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MSc/Dip Urban Regeneration

The MSc/Dip Urban Regeneration addresses the challenge of urban decline and the planned renaissance of our cities.

About the course

The MSc in Urban Regeneration has been created in response to a great challenge facing urban professionals in Britain and around the world: the decay and deterioration of our cities and their planned renaissance.

The challenge, however, is even greater than restoring and rebuilding the physical fabric of cities: it is to provide a new economic base to replace the one that has been lost, to restore hope to communities that have been shattered, to provide children and adults alike with a better chance in life.

It is a massive task that requires 'out of the box' thinking, intellectual rigour and collaboration. The programme aims to develop three qualities necessary for urban professionals:

  • the ability to understand and critically analyse complex urban issues
  • the boldness to address those issues in a creative, strategic manner
  • the confidence to propose appropriate and realistic implementation plans

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Who should apply?

People looking to re-tool for the urban renaissance challenge.


Accreditation

The MSc in Urban Regeneration is fully accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI).

The programme offers a one-year conversion route to become eligible for membership of both professional bodies if your first degree is not in planning and you’re pursuing a career in urban regeneration as MRTPI (by choosing specific elective modules) and MRICS. The Diploma and the MSc also offer you RTPI accreditation eligibility via the 3+1 years route.

More information on routes to membership can be obtained from the RTPI and RICS websites.

The Institute of Economic Development (IED) also welcomes membership applications from graduates of the programme.


Why choose The Bartlett?

We offer:

  • a programme delivering hands-on, multidisciplinary education with input from globally distinguished theorists and practitioners
  • a course that draws on the best of UK and international planning and regeneration experience
  • colleagues with diverse professional and academic backgrounds from around the world, all with a passion for urban regeneration

More information

Structure

To graduate from the programme you will need to take and pass 180 credits (120 for the Diploma). More specifically, you will take six modules of core studies (6x15=90 credits) and another 30 (2x15) credits of elective courses to develop your own particular interests. You will also write a dissertation (60 credits). If you decide to study for the Diploma then you do not need to do a Dissertation.

Depending on which electives you choose you can pursue:

(a) the RTPI stand-alone accreditation route. You will need to take 'BPLN0055 Planning Practice' and either 'BPLN0037 Spatial Planning: Concepts and Context' or 'BPLN0038 Comparative Planning Systems and Cultures' as electives.

(b) the liberal studies route. You can select electives from a wide range of modules taught throughout The Bartlett School of Planning, the Faculty of the Built Environment and UCL. Indicatively, these may include modules on economic development, the Global South, urban sociology, politics, the environment, sustainability and management.

(c) the specialisation route. You can choose a specialism from those offered in The Bartlett School of Planning such as sustainability, real estate, housing, international planning, transport, urban design etc

All 3 routes allow you to apply for RICS and IED membership.

The table below indicates the programme structure for each term. You can get more information about each module by clicking on the module code.

Urban Regeneration Structure Diagram

Compulsory modules

There are a number of different routes to the MSc in Urban Regeneration: one year for full-time students, or two years (and up to five years) for part-time students. Individual modules may also be taken as free-standing training elements and accumulated towards intermediate certificate and diploma qualifications, as well as the master's degree. We make every effort to accommodate modular students, however the MSc UR is not a day release programme (see FAQ section). 

BPLN0065 Urban Problems and Problematics
Credits: 15

BPLN0042 Urban Design: Place Making
Credits: 15 credits

BPLN0064 Case Studies in Implementing Regeneration Projects
Credits: 15

BPLN0062 Development Projects
Credits: 15

BPLN0063 Case Studies in Preparing Regeneration Projects
Credits: 15

BPLN0066 Critical Debates in Urban Regeneration
Credits: 15

Dissertation

BPLN0039 Dissertation in Planning
Credits: 60

Field trip

The programme combines rigorous teaching with hands-on experience of regeneration projects. Site visits in the UK and a field trip to mainland Europe combine talks from key stakeholders with visits to local projects. Recent destinations have included Amsterdam, Athens, Berlin, Brussels, Hamburg, Madrid and Turin.

The trips are an occasion for learning, socialising and networking. For example, the 2009 visit to Athens was combined with a seminar and debate hosted by the Greek UCL alumni group followed by drinks at the Hilton Galaxy Bar. The 2014 trip to Madrid was combined with a Regeneration Workshop with ETSAM and led to a submission for the WSB14 Universities Competition in Barcelona.

Content

Compulsory Modules

BPLN0062 Development Projects provides an understanding of the development process, with emphasis on urban regeneration projects. The module looks at the different thought processes, the considerations of risk and return, and the variety of risk management strategies employed by those engaged in the development process.

BPLN0063 Case Studies in Preparing Regeneration Projects addresses specific localities, developing the students’ skills in diagnostic analysis of local conditions, the elaboration of strategies and negotiation between conflicting interests, and the presentation of project scenarios and budgets.

BPLN0064 Case Studies in Implementing Regeneration Projects requires students to understand the issues surrounding the implementation of urban regeneration policies and proposals. The module explores the complexity involved in putting into practice concepts and ideas such as purchasing power parity (PPP), private finance initiative (PFI), community participation, joint ventures and programme evaluation. The first half of the module focuses on community participation, the second looks into funding, finance, project management mechanisms and evaluation with particular emphasis on regeneration projects.

BPLN0065 Urban Problems and Problematics introduces some of the key theoretical perspectives on urban regeneration and local economic development with examples of how these theories have come to bear directly on or relate to practice in the UK and internationally.

BPLN0042 Urban Design: Place Making draws on the extensive theoretical underpinning of urban design as a means to explore approaches appraising the character of the built environment. As a result, the module focuses on putting forward practical proposals aimed at beneficially influencing the overall quality and liveability of urban space.

BPLN0066 Critical Debates in Urban Regeneration offers structured reading and reflection around key themes in urban regeneration. It develops themes introduced and knowledge gained in other core modules, drawing on theory and practice from the UK and around the world.

Dissertation Module

BPLN0039 Dissertation in Planning aids students to develop their research skills and critical thinking. It involves finding out about, understanding, theorising and reporting creatively on an issue of the student's own choice, whether at international level, or through the study of small-scale national projects, from the sub-region to the individual estate or locality.

Elective Modules

You can select electives from a wide range of modules taught in the Bartlett School of Planning, in the Faculty of the Built Environment or throughout UCL. Common sets of options have included an additional specialism from those offered in the Bartlett School of Planning, such as:

  • the sustainability specialism consisting of modules BPLN0058 Sustainable Urban Development: Key Themes and BPLN0059 Sustainable Urban Development: Project 
  • the housing specialism consisting of modules BPLN0044 Planning for Housing: Process and BPLN0045 Planning for Housing: Project
  • the urban design specialism consisting of modules BPLN0056 Urban Design: Layout, Density and Typology and BPLN0057 Urban Design: Guidance Incentive and Control
  • the international planning specialism consisting of modules BPLN0013 Planning Practices in Europe and BPLN0015 Comparative Urban Projects

Others have opted for:

  • modules on urban sociology and economics, politics and policy theory, from the http://www.ucl.ac.uk/spp/
  • modules on European planning and institutions, urban development and urban projects
  • modules on property markets and property development
  • economic development modules from the Development Planning Unit

If you want to seek RTPI accreditation you can not take any elective module you want, but instead you have to take and pass two extra core courses:

BPLN0055 Planning Practice
And a choice of one of the following two modules:

BPLN0037 Spatial Planning: Concepts and Context
BPLN0038 Comparative Planning Systems and Cultures

Staff

Programme Director

Dr Claudio de Magalhães
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Staff teaching on the programme currently include

Diane Burridge
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Professor Matthew Carmona
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Dr Nikos Karadimitriou 
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Professor Mike Raco
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Professor Fulong Wu
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Careers and employability

Additional activities

The programme places great emphasis in fostering creativity and in promoting alternative means of expression. Students have the opportunity to participate in a variety of additional activities:

  • Seminars on making films about the built environment. These are usually combined with the field trip and/or the BPLN0063 module, thus enabling students to exercise their film-making skills in practice. View samples of student films here.
  • Workshops with academic and professional partner organisations in the UK and overseas. Qualifying students spend time working with local stakeholders, academics and other postgraduate students on addressing real-life regeneration issues. In the last few years students and staff from the MSc Urban Regeneration have participated in the UCL Just Space Network, the Gardens of Art workshop, the Ateliers Cergy 2009 and the UN Habitat EUSS Workshop.
  • Collaborations with the private sector. In 2011 students of the Msc taking the BPLN0063 module, worked together with Buro Happold on two case study projects aiming at answering the questions "Do the benefits of Crossrail go to those that need them?" The outcomes were presented in a workshop attended by UCL staff, students and Buro Happold staff.
  • The CB Richard Ellis (CBRE) Graduate Exchange Programme (supported by the RICS). This offers a unique opportunity for up to five selected UK-based students in real estate to gain overseas work experience in the fastest growing regions of the world. The successful candidates spend six to twelve weeks during the summer gaining general practice work experience in a CBRE office. Air fares, accommodation and basic expenses will be covered by CBRE.

Employment

Graduates who are not already employed are expected to take jobs in a wide variety of public and private offices in the UK and around the world, especially in consultancy firms, voluntary sector organisations and local, regional or national agencies.

First destinations of recent graduates include:

  • Foster & Partners: Urban Strategist
  • Regeneris Consulting: Research Consultant
  • Colombian Green Building Council: Technical Director
  • Mott McDonald: Graduate Planner
  • Fudan University Urban Planning and Architectural Design Institute (Shanghai): Planner
  • Santiago (Chile): Freelance Planning and Regeneration Consultant
  • The Glass House: Senior Project Manager
  • Circle Anglia Housing Association: Business Growth Communications Manager

Since 2014, several MSc Urban Regeneration students and graduates have joined the MOAT internship scheme, to gain hands-on frontline experience by getting involved in Pollard's Hill regeneration project.

Alumni

UCL boasts a very dynamic alumni network of more than 150,000 members. In addition to the UCL network, once you graduate from the MSc programme you will have the opportunity to join the MSc Urban Regeneration alumni networks on LinkedIn and Facebook. These platforms allow previous students to stay in touch, exchange information, network and attend events specially organised for the MSc Urban Regeneration alumni.

FAQs

Can I study for the MSc in Urban Regeneration on a part-time basis or as part of my CPD?

We offer a number of different routes to the MSc in Urban Regeneration: one-year full time or two years (and up to five years) for part-time students. Individual modules may be taken as free-standing CPD training elements, and accumulated towards intermediate Certificate and Diploma qualifications, as well as the Masters degree. Students taking the course part-time or those taking individual modules on a CPD basis are charged fees on a pro-rata scale.

How big a time commitment does studying for the MSc in Urban Regeneration involve?

If you wish to study on a full time basis you should count on dedicating at least 1800 hours for lectures and self-guided study. If you wish to study on a part-time basis then your time commitment will vary depending on the number of credits you choose per year. You need to keep in mind a rough equivalence of at least 150 hours of committed per 15-credit module.

Is the MSc in Urban Regeneration a 'day-release' programme?

We make every effort to bundle teaching for the core modules on two days per week (usually on Mondays or Tuesdays and Fridays) and have been able to do so since the beginning of the programme. This would mean that students studying on a part time basis could attend lectures on one day per week. Due to timetabling and venue availability restrictions no guarantee can be given that we will be able to offer this every year. There is also no guarantee that the electives you may wish to choose will be offered on the same day as the rest of your classes. Your coursework may require you to dedicate more than one slot per week on fieldwork or study.

Does UCL offer financial support to MSc students?

Yes, several. Please visit the ‘Admissions’ tab on this webpage for more detailed info.

What professional accreditations does the MSc in Urban Regeneration offer?

Please visit the 'Overview' tab on this webpage for more detailed info.

What do I need to do in order to study abroad?

Studying abroad depends on possessing appropriate language skills, satisfying the host institution’s admissions criteria for exchange students and on a host institution having staff available to supervise visiting students between May and September. If you wish to study abroad you should notify your course director as soon as you join the programme.

What type of tutorial and personal support is offered to students of the MSc Urban Regeneration?

UCL operates a very helpful student support service. In addition each student of the MSc Urban Regeneration programme is allocated a personal tutor whom they can meet both in regular intervals and upon request in order to discuss academic progress and personal issues. Especially for Overseas students the Bartlett School of Planning has appointed an Overseas Student Advisor (Dr Jung Won Sonn). 

Still can't find what you're looking for? Get in touch with Programme Director and Admissions Tutor Professor Claudio de Magalhaes or Programme Administrator Ben Tasker.

For administrative inquiries about your application, please contact the Graduate Faculty Office: bartlett.pgclerk@ucl.ac.uk

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