The Bartlett School of Planning


BSc Urban Studies

This programme, which accepts only a small number of students each year, has been designed with a range of professional career opportunities in mind. It offers great flexibility for students curious to explore a broader range of studies relating to the built environment, as well as other related subjects offered elsewhere in UCL.

Key Information

Programme starts

September 2022
UCAS code
Full-time: 3 years
Application deadline
26 January 2022
London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A Levels

No specific subjects. At least two A level subjects should be taken from UCL's list of preferred A level subjects.
English Language and Mathematics at grade C or 5.

Contextual offer

BBB more about contextual offers
No specific subjects. At least two A level subjects should be taken from UCL's list of preferred A level subjects.
English Language and Mathematics at grade C or 5.

IB Diploma

A total of 16 points in three higher level subjects, with no score lower than 5.

Contextual offer

32 more about contextual offers
A total of 15 points in three higher level subjects, with no score lower than 5.

UK applicants qualifications

For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:

Equivalent qualification

BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF) or BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (RQF - teaching from 2016) with Distinction, Distinction, Distinction.

Pass in Access to HE Diploma with a minimum of 30 credits at Distinction, 12 credits at Merit and 3 credits at Pass, all from Level 3 units.

D3,M1,M1 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects

ABB at Advanced Highers (or AB at Advanced Higher and BBB at Higher)

Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate plus 2 GCE A levels at grades ABB.

International applications

In addition to A level and International Baccalaureate, UCL considers a wide range of international qualifications for entry to its undergraduate degree programmes.

Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates

UCL Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are intensive one-year foundation courses for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.

Typical UPC students will be high achievers in a 12-year school system which does not meet the standard required for direct entry to UCL.

For more information see: ucl.ac.uk/upc.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency. Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

A variety of English language programmes are offered at the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education.

Degree benefits

  • This programme provides a broad-based education in urbanism and the built environment, offering flexibility to choose additional related modules across UCL and benefit from the wide educational offerings across the university. 

  • The Bartlett has a strong history of research and leading policy advisory work. It places itself at the heart of international debates on the future of cities and regions.

  • Based in London, we are able to offer our students a range of fascinating 'live projects' to use as case studies in their academic work, access to a diverse range of employers, and an unrivalled concentration of professional meetings, seminars, conferences, exhibitions and events.

  • The School has a strong international outlook and provides opportunities for combined study overseas in Europe, North America, Australia and Hong Kong.


This BSc does not lead to eligibility for professional membership of the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) or Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). If students are interested in gaining these accreditations, they would be advised to choose one of our sister programmes, the Urban Planning, Design and Management BSc or the Urban Planning and Real Estate BSc. Alternatively, students can apply for a suitable accredited Master's programme following graduation, which would be an alternative route leading to eligibility for professional membership.

Degree structure

In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual modules, normally valued at 15 or 30 credits, adding up to a total of 120 credits for the year. Modules are assessed in the academic year in which they are taken. The balance of compulsory and optional modules varies from programme to programme and year to year. A 30-credit module is considered equivalent to 15 credits in the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).

The Urban Studies BSc shares common modules with the Urban Planning, Design and Management BSc and the Urban Planning and Real Estate BSc, but it allows a more flexible mode of study. In addition to a specified number of core modules, students are free to choose from a range of eligible modules across the faculty and university in the second and third years.

Core modules are structured around the three streams of understanding, managing and delivering urban change. They include a variety of theoretical and practical modules in the urban planning, social science and design disciplines. 

The programme offers the opportunity to study overseas for a term in the second year. The school has long-established links with many universities in Europe as well as a growing list in the USA, Australia and the Asia-Pacific.

Over the second and third years, Urban Studies students can choose seven eligible and related modules from across The Bartlett and UCL.

Upon successful completion of 360 credits, you will be awarded a BSc (Hons) in Urban Studies.


Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory module(s)

  • Contemporary Cities (15 credits)
  • Beyond Cities: Rural Economies, Communities and Landscapes (15 credits)
  • Introducing Planning Systems (15 credits)
  • Introducing Urban Design: Design Skills (15 credits)
  • Management for Built Environment Professionals I (15 credits)
  • Making Cities: The Production of the Built Environment (15 credits)
  • Planning History and Thought (15 credits)
  • Urban Lab I: Graphic Skills (15 credits)

Compulsory module(s)

  • Economics of Cities and their Regions (15 credits)
  • Green Futures (15 credits)
  • Strategic Planning Project (15 credits)
  • Cities and Social Change (15 credits)
  • Urban Lab II: Spatial Analysis (15 credits)

Optional modules

You will take 45 credits of optional undergraduate modules offered within the School of Planning or other departments of UCL.

Compulsory module(s)

  • Urban and Environmental Politics (15 credits)
  • Real Estate Development (15 credits)
  • Regional Development, Planning and Policy in a Global Context (15 credits)
  • Transport Policy and Planning (15 credts)

Optional modules

You will take 60 credits of optional undergraduate modules offered within the School of Planning or other departments of UCL.

Your learning

The School of Planning advocates and employs a very interactive, hands-on form of learning. Alongside lectures, seminars and tutorials we include field visits, group project work, and laboratory and design work sessions to improve your learning experience.

Students have the opportunity to go on two extended field trips during their degree: a European city in their first year and a UK city in their third year. In addition, many modules include fieldwork or site visits as part of the learning experience.

In the third term of the third year, a voluntary two-week work experience placement is offered, drawing from our pool of employers


Your final marks will reflect your success in a wide range of assessment types including essays, individual and group reports, urban design outputs such as posters and models, presentations, and a small number of exams. This is a distinctive feature of our planning programmes, and of The Bartlett's approach in particular. As an Urban Studies student, the balance of your assessments will depend on the optional modules that you choose in the second and third years.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.


The programme enables you to acquire highly transferable knowledge and skills such as data collection, analysis and presentation, graphic skills, resolution of problems and conflicts, negotiation and mediation, team work and leadership, managing work tasks, preparing and writing professional reports, as well as written, graphic and oral presentation skills.

Graduates work in a vast range of positions in the private, public and third sectors within the built environment and urbanism disciplines (such as planning, property, urban design, economic development, housing, transport, and regeneration), as well as in other sectors where their analytical, negotiating, problem-solving and creative skills are valued. 

UCL is committed to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers and UCL Innovation and Enterprise can help you find employment or learn about entrepreneurship.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2022/23 academic year. The UK fees shown are for the first year of the programme at UCL only. Fees for future years may be subject to an inflationary increase. The Overseas fees shown are the fees that will be charged to 2022/23 entrants for each year of study on the programme, unless otherwise indicated below.

UK students
£9,250 (2022/23)
Overseas students
£29,400 (2022/23)

Full details of UCL's tuition fees, tuition fee policy and potential increases to fees can be found on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/undergraduate/funding-your-studies.

Additional costs

This programme does not have any additional costs apart from purchasing books or stationery, printing or photocopying.

A guide including rough estimates for these and other living expenses is included on the UCL Fees and funding pages. If you are concerned by potential additional costs for books, equipment, etc., please get in touch with the relevant departmental contact (details given on this page).


Various funding options are available, including student loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students whose household income falls below a certain level may also be eligible for a non-repayable bursary or for certain scholarships. Please see the Fees and funding pages for more details.

Funding may be available from the Bartlett School of Planning or the Bartlett Faculty Office.

Departmental scholarships

Funding opportunities relevant to the department may appear in this section when they are available. Please check carefully or confirm with the programme contact to ensure they apply to this degree programme.

Bartlett Promise Scholarship - Undergraduate

Tuition fees plus £15,364 maintenance/yr
Based on financial need

The Scholarships and Funding website lists scholarships and funding schemes available to UCL students. These may be open to all students, or restricted to specific nationalities, regions or academic department.

Application and next steps

Your application

We will look for evidence of your interest in our subject in your personal statement. We hope to see demonstrable interest in, and understanding of, the complex nature of cities, the links between urban planning and design, as well as an ability to write coherently, communicate effectively, think critically, and to understand and solve complex problems. We will also assess your use of English.  

How to apply

Application for admission should be made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Applicants currently at school or college will be provided with advice on the process; however, applicants who have left school or who are based outside the United Kingdom may obtain information directly from UCAS.

Application deadline: 26 January 2022


We aim to invite offer-holders living in or near to the UK to an applicant open day. This will typically include an introduction to UCL and the School of Planning, a presentation on UCL accommodation and finance, a taster lecture delivered by an academic in the School of Planning, lunch and a tour of the campus with current students, and an interactive Q&A session with members of staff and current students.

You may be asked to submit an essay in support of your application.

We welcome applications from people with non-standard qualifications, including mature students who have relevant study or work experience. Please contact the Admissions Officer, George Burridge, if you need further advice about the acceptability of non-standard qualifications.

For further information on UCL's selection process see: How we assess your application.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

Page last modified on 15 September 2022