This two-year long full time Master's programme encourages students to think independently and critically about city and regional planning problems both domestically and internationally. It specifically emphasizes the importance of both a spatial and comparative perspective to planning.
Covid-19 programme updates
Due to COVID-19, there may have been updates to this programme for the 2020 academic year. Where there has been an update, these are indicated with a red alert and a link which will provide further information.
Modes and duration
Full-time students study for 37.5 hours per week during term time. Typically, lectures and seminars occur on two days per week.
Tuition fees (2020/21)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website. The programme comprises 300 credits in total. The full-time fee quoted is for the first year only (150 credits); the fee in the second year will be subject to UCL's annual fee increase.
A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard is required.
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.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
The programme equips students theoretically and practically, engaging them academically and in practice with planning and related fields of knowledge. Students will learn how to think critically, creatively and analytically across different spatial scales, from strategic to local - and across urban design, city planning, place-making, real estate and sustainability arenas - as they seek integrated solutions to defined planning problems.
Students undertake modules to the value of 300 credits.
MSc students must take seven compulsory modules (135 credits), one optional module (45 credits), two elective modules (30 credits), all assessed by either coursework or exam or both, and submit a 15,000-word dissertation or major personal project (90 credits).
Upon successful completion of 300 credits, you will be awarded a MPlan in City Planning.
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.
- Year One
- Pillars of Planning (30 credits)
- Plan Making Studio I (30 credits)
- Spatial Planning: Concepts and Context (15 credits)
- Urban Design: Place Making (15 credits)
- Planning Practice (15 credits)
- Year Two
- Comparative Planning Systems and Environmental Justice (15 credits)
- Dissertation in City Planning (90 credits)
- Plan Making Studio II (15 credits)
- Land Use, Sustainability and Environmental Justice (15 credits)
Students choose one of the following:
- Work Placement in City Planning (45 credits)
- Study Abroad in City Planning (45 credits)
Additionally, students choose elective modules to the value of 30 credits, from across UCL. These are subject to availaibilty and home department approval.
All students undertake an independent research project comprising a proposal of 2,000 words and culminating in a dissertation of 15,000 words.
For students commencing their studies in September 2020, we cannot guarantee that field trips will be permitted, or can be made safe and viable. We are working on the basis that non-UK group travel will be highly unlikely, but we will continue to explore possibilities for UK-based trips later in the year. We are also exploring options to provide alternative enhancements to your programme if travel is restricted. Once we have more information, we will contact all involved, but you should not anticipate non-UK travel being a part of your programme in 2020-21.
Term two of year two is spent either as study abroad or in an industry placement.
Teaching and learning
Methods of delivery will vary (because of the flexible nature of the programme) but a student might encounter studio teaching, formal lectures, analytical modelling, small-group tutorials and discussion, formal presentations, and site visits. Student performance is assessed through individual and group work, essays, and project work.
The purchase of books many constitute an additional cost, but there is no requirement to purchase any book as part of the programme. Optional modules may incur additional expenses.
The option to study at a partner university or take a UK work placement incurs no extra cost but students will be expected to pay for their own travel.
UCL offers a range of financial awards aimed at assisting both prospective and current students with their studies.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- This scheme is now closed for 2020/21
- £15,000 (1 year)
- Based on both academic merit and financial need
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
Why study this degree at UCL?
In the second term of Year 2, students will have the option to study outside of the UK in one of our partner universities. Alternatively, you can take a work placement in the UK.
UCL Bartlett School of Planning has a strong history of teaching and research at all levels. The school has been at the forefront of planning research and teaching for more than 100 years and is one of the foremost planning schools in the United Kingdom, with an international reputation.
Located in the heart of London, which offers unique opportunities to study the complexities of contemporary urban design and planning processes, the school encourages students to engage with practitioners, alumni and academic guests through its programme of seminars, site visits and workshops.
Department: Bartlett School of Planning
What our students and staff say
"These past two years have been some of the most enriching, inspiring and intellectually challenging years of my academic career. Coming from a Sociological and Geographical background, I did not have many technical or design skills. Having the chance to undertake a placement in practice, but also to participate in the multiple group urban design studios that the course offers, I can now say that I feel confident in starting a career in urban planning. Not only was the content of the modules stimulating, teachers encouraged us to think outside the box and challenge our preconceived ideas. This prepared us to the practicalities of the professional world, but also to continuously question ideas that we might encounter throughout our career. Studying alongside other curious and motivated students made my experience even richer. We had the chance to travel on two fieldtrips outside London, which exposed us to different ways of practicing planning, and opened our mind to new systems. "
Lucy BretelleCity Planning MPlan (2020)
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £80 for online applications and £105 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
This degree programme will be particularly suitable for students from architectural, planning, urban design, landscape, real estate or civil engineering backgrounds, although others might also be considered.
- All applicants
- 24 July 2020
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.