Scholarships and Awards
A wide range of scholarships and awards are available to environmental design students. They are sponsored by the program, the campus, the professions and other foundations and donors.
In addition to these scholarships, interested students may participate in faculty-student research projects funded by the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) programs, or in other research opportunities provided by the campus or in cooperation with the program's faculty.
Recognition of Academic Achievement
As a preprofessional program, the Program in Environmental Design provides an atmosphere for study and creative investigation. The program holds academic rigor and quality in the highest esteem. In recognition of high academic achievement and professional attainment, the program grants scholarly honors at graduation.
Students achieving a grade point average of 3.50 to 3.749 (honors) and 3.75 to 4.00 (special honors) are recognized at commencement. Honors are based on coursework completed at the University of Colorado. A minimum of 70 credit hours of coursework must be completed at CU to be eligible for honors.
Thesis Honors in Environmental Design
Environmental design students may graduate with Latin honors (summa cum laude, magna cum laude or cum laude). Students with a high GPA propose a project to work on under the guidance of a primary advisor. Students defend their thesis to a committee of faculty in their senior year.
Latin Honors candidates present work that is student initiated and student directed well beyond the requirements for required class work. Program in Environmental Design Latin Honors projects fall into two major categories: research and design.
- Research projects present a heretofore-unanswered question then seek to answer it, relying on a variety of data or types of evidence. The product is a paper, the length of which is determined by the topic in conversation with the advisor.
- Design projects present a problem and propose a solution to that problem. The product is a design or object, presented with a critical introduction. Design theses go beyond designing a building, landscape, urban district, or planning problem that responds to conventional programmatic assumptions, to propose a new response to a problem identified by the student. The scope of the project and the design presentation are determined in conversation with the advisor.
Student Rights and Responsibilities
The Program in Environmental Design is part of an academic community whose mission requires an open learning and working environment for students, faculty, staff and administrators. An open learning and working environment values and protects individual dignity and the integrity of human relationships and is based upon mutual trust, freedom of inquiry, freedom of expression and the absence of intimidation and exploitation. Any infringement upon these freedoms and rights may be cause for review by the program and/or by other university offices for retention in the program. Students in the program are subject to the policies and procedures governing student rights and responsibilities. See the campuswide Student Conduct & Colorado Creed section.
Ethics and Academic Dishonesty
Students in the Program in Environmental Design are subject to the Boulder campus Honor Code and are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the highest standards of honesty and integrity. Any act of academic dishonesty may result in sanctions from individual faculty and also be reported to the Honor Code Office for their review and action.
For a full description of Honor Code expectations and policies, see the campuswide Academic Integrity section.
GPA Requirements, Probation and Scholastic Suspension
Students who fail to meet the minimum cumulative grade point requirement of 2.00 are still permitted to continue their studies on a provisional basis.
First semester freshmen students who do not achieve a 2.0 will be placed on academic alert for the following semester and are required to submit an academic recovery plan with their advisor. Scholastic records of students are evaluated at the end of the second semester, if the student has not achieved an overall 2.0 the student will be placed on probation or suspended depending on an evaluation of meeting the academic recovery plan.
Continuing students who fail to meet the minimum cumulative grade point requirement of 2.00 in a given semester are permitted to continue their studies the following semester on a probationary basis. Scholastic records of students are evaluated at the end of the probationary semester, if the student has not achieved an overall 2.0 the student will be placed on suspension.
Students on suspension are not allowed to register on any campus within the University of Colorado system while on suspension, with the exception of continuing education courses or main campus summer sessions. A suspended student may take classes through Continuing Education or on any University of Colorado campus during the summer in order to raise their cumulative CU grade point to a 2.00 or higher to be eligible for re-admittance into the program. Suspended students may petition for early re-admittance, which are reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the program administration.
Students are notified of their academic status (e.g., alert, probation, suspension) in writing, with a copy of the letter placed in the student's file, directing the student to contact their advisor and prepare an academic recovery plan approved by their advisor.
Students in the Program in Environmental Design who withdraw from all their registered courses two semesters in a row will have a hold placed on their account prohibiting them from further registration with the exception of registration in Summer Session classes, which are not counted in the regular academic year. Students will not be readmitted for return to CU Boulder before one full academic year has elapsed (not including the semester of withdrawal).
Students suspended a second time are reinstated only under special circumstances. Students who believe that their situations warrant a departure from these normal stipulations may petition for reinstatement. The program looks with favor on such petitions only if the student has shown marked improvement in academic work or if there are remarkable circumstances that have contributed to the student's academic difficulties.
Students are expected to subscribe to attendance and participation guidelines specified by instructors for individual courses in a manner that complies with university protocol. Given that a considerable portion of the ENVD curriculum is offered via studio courses, students are fully expected to comply with guidelines that may be different and more onerous than traditional lecture or seminar courses (e.g., attending skill sessions, lectures, juries and presentations).
The Program in Environmental Design currently offers specializations in architecture, landscape architecture, planning, and design studies. Policy questions may be directed to 303-492-7711 or ENVDoffice@colorado.edu.
Requirements for Admission
High School Students
Candidates for admission to the Program in Environmental Design are expected to meet the general requirements for admission to the university. See Admissions for specific requirements. Applicants to the program should possess a strong high school or equivalent background, including four years of english and math, and at least three years of natural science (including physics and/or biology) and social science. Additional coursework in math, social studies and the arts and humanities is recommended.
Transfer students entering the program are admitted through CU Boulder's admission process directly into the Program in Environmental Design. A college-level GPA of 2.75 or higher is required. Preference is given to students who have taken college-level courses in the areas of architecture, planning or environmental studies. Completion of courses in related fields of social science, natural science, fine arts or humanities is also considered in admission review. All coursework except the last term, if in progress, must be completed and must be listed on the official transcript sent for admission consideration.
Students are encouraged to transfer as early as possible in their undergraduate career due to the required sequence of design courses in the first two years of the curriculum. Students may declare their specialization in architecture, landscape architecture, planning or design studies when they transfer or after they complete the core program. While transfer students are admitted for the fall and spring terms each year, it is important to note that the core curriculum sequence begins in the fall semester with only limited opportunities to begin study out of sequence. Students who start the sequence in the spring semester will be required to complete summer classes in order to stay on track in the curriculum. All transfer students are required to take a minimum of 30 credit hours in the Program in Environmental Design.
A maximum of 60 credit hours taken at a two-year college may be applied toward the baccalaureate degree. In general, credit hours in vocational-technical courses are not accepted for transfer. Transfer agreements between the University of Colorado and all Colorado community colleges outline approximately one year of prescribed general education courses that may be completed as preparation for transfer into the Program in Environmental Design. As noted above, students should plan to transfer to the University of Colorado as soon as possible to start the sequential curriculum. See Transfer of College-Level Credit for admission standards for transfer.
Transfer Students from Other University Design Programs
Transfer students from other universities offering preprofessional or accredited professional degree programs in one of the program's specializations who enter CU Boulder may apply for equivalency and advanced standing. A portfolio review will be required for these students. In order for transfer credit to meet core degree requirements, a grade of B or better is required in the transferring class. For more information, visit the Academic Center for Excellence webpage.
Intra-University Transfer (IUT)
University of Colorado students in good standing who are interested in pursuing a degree in environmental design may apply for transfer into the program. Students should contact the program office for meeting dates and application deadlines for specific semesters. We highly encourage prospective students to attend an Environmental Design Program tour, which are offered Monday–Friday at 12:30 p.m. in the lobby of the Environmental Design building on main campus.
For more information, visit the Intra-University Transfer Students section of the program's Transferring to CU webpage.
Advanced Placement (AP) and college-level credit may be granted on the basis of the College Board's Advanced Placement tests. For students who have completed AP coursework in high school and received scores in the AP examination that meet university standards, then AP as well as college credit is granted. Granted college credit is treated as transfer credit without a grade but counts toward graduation requirements and could meet other specific degree requirements when applicable.
The Program accepts incomplete agreements between faculty and students who have satisfactorily completed a substantial amount of coursework but are unable to complete the course requirements due to extenuating circumstances. In all cases, students must present evidence of circumstances beyond their control that prevent them from completing the class. The student and faculty member must complete an Incomplete Agreement outlining the terms of course completion and submit this agreement to their advisor in the Center for Academic Excellence.
Ordinarily, only students at 3000 or 4000 studio level and who hold at least a 3.00 GPA are permitted to register for Independent Study (ENVD 3909) or Independent Study (ENVD 4909). Independent study credit is supervised by a faculty member and may not be used to substitute for any required core or design studio courses.
Additional requirements may be established depending on the proposed topic. No more than 3 credit hours of independent study credit during one semester and no more than a total of 6 are given for the entire time the student is enrolled in the program, unless an exception is granted by the program.
A complete description of the scope of the independent work, a summary of how it will be carried out, and a definition of the intended outcomes must be submitted to the supervising faculty member no later than five days after the official beginning of a semester. Approval of the description must be by the faculty member and by program administration before permission is granted for enrollment in the independent study course. Students should make arrangements for the independent study course details during registration or well before the semester begins.
Credits for Teaching Assistant (ENVD 3919), Research Assistant (ENVD 4929), Professional Design Internship (ENVD 4939), Exploratory Internship (ENVD 3939) and for Independent Study (ENVD 3909) or Independent Study (ENVD 4909) are all guided by the same standards. Credits earned are subject to a 3 credit-hour limitation per course, Independent Study is graded while teaching assistantships, research assistantships, and internships are offered on a pass/fail basis.
A student may elect to take up to 6 credit hours toward the BEnvD degree on a pass/fail basis but these credit hours must fall in the category of general electives and may not include coursework taught within the Program in Environmental Design. Courses within the Program in Environmental Design that are only offered as pass/fail are not subject to this policy.
Students matriculating in the Program in Environmental Design are eligible to participate in the ROTC programs on the Boulder campus.
Students interested in such programs should contact the professor in charge of the ROTC program of their choice (Army, Navy, Air Force) and also their ENVD academic advisor for information on residence and curriculum requirements for graduation. No more than 8 credit hours of ROTC courses may be may be applied to the BEnvD degree.
Credits transferred from other institutions are limited to the number of credit hours given for similar work in regular offerings at the University of Colorado and must meet the quality level expected at the University of Colorado Boulder. The program faculty, in conjunction with the Advising Center for Excellence, may make exceptions to this policy.
The program does not accept vocational/technical coursework in design, graphics or construction as meeting specific course requirements of the program; nor does it consider such coursework as acceptable in fulfilling the program's elective requirements. Only in exceptional circumstances may a student petition the program to request a transfer of such credits.
A grade of C- or better is required in any course for which credit is granted in transfer from another institution to the university. However, in order for transfer credit to meet specific core degree requirements, a grade of B or better is required in the transferring class. Grades earned in other institutions (excluding other campuses of the University of Colorado system) are not factored in the CU grade point average.
For more information on transfer credit policies, see the Transfer of College-Level Credit section.
In order to graduate from the University of Colorado with a Bachelor of Environmental Design a student must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours within the Program in Environmental Design as well as complete their last semester in residence as a full-time student.
Academic advising for students presently enrolled or anticipating enrollment in the program is provided in a variety of forms. High school students or prospective transfer students from other universities are encouraged to participate in "Be a CU Student for a Day" or other visitation programs co-sponsored by the program and the CU Boulder Office of Admissions. For more information, see the Admission Visit Programs or ENVD Transfers.
Students already enrolled in Boulder campus programs who are interested in intrauniversity transfer (IUT) into the Program in Environmental Design should refer to the ENVD IUT process.
Students enrolled in ENVD receive academic advising from professional staff in the Advising Center for Excellence through both appointments and open drop-in office hours.
New Student Welcome
Incoming freshmen and transfer students are invited to attend New Student Welcome programming during the summer prior to the start of the fall semester. Visit the New Student & Family Programs website to learn more.
All students are required to attend an ENVD information session during New Student Welcome Week in August to receive an overview of educational opportunities and the philosophy of the program, and to meet other new students and the faculty of the program. If you are starting your educational career in the spring semester, all students are required to attend an ENVD information session during New Student Welcome Week in January to receive an overview of educational opportunities and the philosophy of the program, and to meet other new students and the faculty of the program.
Retention of Student Work
As a condition of admission, the Program in Environmental Design may retain student work submitted in fulfillment of class requirements. This retained work may be used to provide outside agencies with tangible evidence of performance, to serve as additional visual aid material in presentations to other students, and to contribute to possible educational exhibits and publications requested by the university community and the general public. The program does not claim any copyright and intellectual ownership of the material, but does retain rights to display student work for marketing and promotion, or for academic purposes.
Students are responsible for recording their work for future use in their portfolios. When the program retains students' materials for displays or presentations, the program will ensure that students have the opportunity to reclaim and record their work for portfolio use.
The Program in Environmental Design requires that all incoming undergraduate students have and use their own computers and software applications in their studies. Suggested computer specifications and standards are posted on the Office of Information Technology (OIT)'s Recommended Software and Hardware List webpage.
Neither the Boulder campus nor the Program in Environmental Design endorse nor require students to buy a computer from a particular manufacturer. The configurations suggested by OIT establish high performance requirements that can be found in many different computers. Specialized software requirements for different classes in the Program in Environmental Design appear on the syllabi for those classes, and that software is generally available at discounted student rates.