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November 14, 2011

Contact: Rachel Garrett

Cal Poly Architecture, Design Programs Earn Top Honors Again from DesignIntelligence

SAN LUIS OBISPO – Cal Poly continues to lead the nation’s architecture and design programs in an annual survey by the monthly journal DesignIntelligence.

DesignIntelligence ranks Cal Poly’s landscape architecture program first in the Western region and third in national undergraduate programs in preparing students for success. Cal Poly tied with Purdue University and Texas A&M. Louisiana State and Penn State ranked first and second, respectively.

The landscape architecture program also earned top honors in the category of cross-disciplinary teamwork.

“It is a tremendous honor and tribute to the talents and passion of our students, faculty and alumni to be ranked third in the nation,” said Joseph Ragsdale, head of Cal Poly’s Landscape Architecture Department. “We are particularly proud to maintain our top ranking in the 13-state Western region and to receive top honors in the skill area of cross-disciplinary teamwork.”

Cal Poly’s architecture program ranks fourth, following Cornell University, the University of Texas at Austin, and Virginia Tech, and it earned top honors for the fifth consecutive year in the methods and materials category.

In his article “Fostering Better Schools, Challenging Conventions,” James P. Cramer, publisher and founding editor of DesignIntelligence, points out that over time, Cal Poly ranks more consistently than other schools included in the research. “It is impressive to see a school so highly regarded year after year,” he said.

Henri de Hahn, head of the Architecture Department at Cal Poly said the report gives resonance to the integrity of his program’s pedagogical responsibilities.

“Our Learn by Doing philosophy combines common sense and intellectual curiosity, and our graduates are well positioned to become the next team players in a world of increased complexity,” de Hahn said. “The 2012 DesignIntelligence rankings send a clear message that practitioners recognize the importance of a polytechnic education. The Architecture Department remains ambitious in educating creative leaders who can work in an integrative and interdisciplinary manner, a professional path that continues to be demonstrated successfully by our alumni.”

DesignIntelligence is a monthly journal that follows U.S. trends and opportunities in architecture, design, building technology and engineering. Its publication, America’s Best Architecture & Design Schools 2012, takes into account more than 2,300 student surveys, as well as the perspective of 277 industry practitioners and 111 leaders of academic programs who review their own and peer institutions.

For more information on DesignIntelligence, visit

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