Spatial Planning Degree Apprenticeship MSc

London, Bloomsbury

The Spatial Planning Degree Apprenticeship MSc combines the educational elements of UCL's existing Spatial Planning MSc with supported workplace learning and practical experience meeting the requirements of the RTPI's Chartered Town Planning Apprenticeship standard. Successful completion of the apprenticeship will give you a Spatial Planning MSc and the status of being a Chartered Town Planner (MRTPI) having gained practical experience in the workplace.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2024/25)
Programme only available on a modular (flexible) basis.
Overseas tuition fees (2024/25)
Programme only available on a modular (flexible) basis.
Not applicable
Up To 5 Years
Programme starts
September 2024
Applications accepted
Applicants who require a visa: 16 Oct 2023 – 28 Jun 2024
Applications close at 5pm UK time

Applications open

Applicants who do not require a visa: 16 Oct 2023 – 30 Aug 2024
Applications close at 5pm UK time

Applications open

Entry requirements

Candidates must have a sponsoring employer based in England who will employ them in a planning role and is prepared to provide a work place mentor and enter into an employer agreement with UCL. Applicants who do not have this arrangement may be interested in applying for the Spatial Planning MSc instead. All candidates must hold a Level 2 award (e.g. GCSE graded A*-C) in Mathematics and English. Ordinarily, candidates must also hold an undergraduate degree in any discipline classified 2:1 or above (or equivalent). However, the programme is open to applicants who do not have a 2:1 or above or do not hold a first degree at all where they are able to demonstrate senior-level professional experience in planning or a related field. In such situations, evidence of prior knowledge and experience will be required and will be assessed via completion of a qualifying pro-forma assessment of this prior knowledge and experience.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 2

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level.

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

Equivalent qualifications

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. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

Students analyse the definition of, and solutions to, urban and regional planning problems and the nature of existing planning systems and practices in the United Kingdom. We focus on the British tradition of planning in the programme. Emphasis is placed on the importance of a spatial and comparative perspective to planning and the need for integrated solutions to planning problems and the achievement of sustainable development.

As a degree apprenticeship, learning at the university is complemented by 'on the job' learning in the workplace to become a chartered town planner.

Who this course is for

The apprenticeship is primarily for graduates of any undergraduate degree who wish to make a career in planning or gain professional status as a chartered planner. In order to join the programme, an applicant will need to have an offer of employment from a sponsoring employer in England, who will employ them as an apprentice and provide a mentor for the workplace learning element of the apprenticeship, or already be employed by a sponsoring employer in England who will support them to attend the course and upskill. An employer agreement needs to be made between the employer and UCL in relation to this. Applicants MUST already have the sponsoring employer in place. UCL does not currently offer a service for applicants to find employers.

What this course will give you

The Bartlett School of Planning (BSP), UCL has a strong history of teaching and research. It has been at the forefront of planning research and teaching for 100 years and is one of the foremost planning schools in the United Kingdom, with an international reputation. UCL is ranked #1 in the UK for Construction, Surveying and Planning according to The Guardian Good University Guide 2024. Based in the heart of London there is much for students to learn from being at the cutting-edge of policy-relevant critical debate, empirical study and research-led teaching. The staff profile is multidisciplinary and teaching staff are actively involved in shaping the theories and debates covered in their teaching. Our annual public lectures attract pre-eminent speakers from around the world and our student body has a broad, international profile.

Although situated within global and European contexts, the focus for the programme is primarily the UK, and particularly London. London is a complex setting that provides the natural and most accessible laboratory for BSP students. An emphasis on understanding the social and physical world will lead to a greater appreciation of how action or intervention shapes place. There is also a concern with ethical issues as a framework for planned intervention.

As a degree apprenticeship, this programme combines the excellent educational inputs of the long established Spatial Planning MSc degree with workplace experience and learning, leading to the fulfilment of all the knowledge, skills and behaviours necessary to become a fully chartered town planner in England (MRTPI).

The foundation of your career

The programme equips graduates with a wide range of skills beneficial to employability including planning-specific skills, for example, an appreciation of policy-making and implementation, of spatial analysis, basic principles of urban design, social research and plan-making and decision-making processes. Graduates will also gain transferable skills such as group work, independent research, communication skills including presentation and writing, and problem solving skills.


Graduates of the Spatial Planning MSc have been very successful in gaining subsequent employment, including core public and private sector planning careers (such as local government and local, national and international consultancies), as well as the housing and transport sectors; planning, urban regeneration and environmental agencies; public and private utility companies; think tanks and public policy organisations; environmental campaign groups; and teaching and research.


The Bartlett School of Planning and UCL’s dedicated Careers Network are here to assist you in exploring your career options, gaining valuable skills and experience, and guiding you through the job application process. You will be given the opportunity to participate in various events and training tailored to your industry, such as alumni and industry insight panels, career taster sessions, masterclasses, careers fairs and more.


MSc Spatial Planning Degree Apprenticeship incorporates an MSc degree fully accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) ( and an End Point Assessment which involves the assessment of professional competence to become a fully chartered town planner as a Member of the Royal Town Planning Institute (MRTPI)

Teaching and learning

The programme offers a multi-disciplinary education that spans the social sciences along with elements of urban design. The programme is delivered through a range of teaching and learning methods, including lectures, seminars and tutorials, project work and field study visits, and rounded-off by an individual piece of dissertation research. Group-work is designed to develop a broad range of planning and design-relevant skills and knowledge.  It is a principle- and theory-driven programme which gives students both conceptual understanding, and the skills needed to tackle practical problems of urban and regional planning in practice.

The programme is delivered through individual and group project work, skills-based practical and IT work, lectures, field-trips, tutorials and seminars. Assessment is through individual and group work, essays, examination, skills-based practical work, and the dissertation.

A usual requirement is to attend UCL one day per week for contact time and self-directed study.


Students are generally expected to complete in three years but may take up to five years if personal circumstances require.

Years one and two involve part-time completion of the MSc Spatial Planning modules, and the apprenticeship specific skills module. Students take five modules in year one (BPLN0037, BPLN0042, BPLN0043, BPLN0047, BPLN0107) between October and June. Students take BPLN0002, their two specialism modules and the dissertation (BPLN0039) in year two between October and September. In the third year, students focus on workplace learning and working towards the completion of the End Point Assessment to become fully chartered town planners.

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 are subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded an MSc in Spatial Planning Degree Apprenticeship.


The programme includes a residential field trip during which themes relevant to the course are explored in different place contexts. This is an opportunity to consider built environment issues in real world settings and network as a course community. The cost of travel and accommodation for the field trip are covered by UCL although students will need to cover visas, meals and other personal expenses.


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

Online - Open day

Graduate Open Events: Bartlett School of Planning Taster Lecture

Join us for a virtual open day where you can experience what it's like to be a student at The Bartlett School of Planning with a taster lecture from Dr Michael Short, Associate Professor (Teaching) in Planning.

Online - Open day

Graduate Open Events: School of Planning

Whether your ambition is to design better buildings, plan better cities, build sustainable communities or help meet the challenge of climate change, The Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment could be a big step towards it. Join this session to learn about the master's courses offered by our School of Planning.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time
Tuition fees (2024/25) £22,700
Tuition fees (2024/25) £22,700

Programme only available on a modular (flexible) basis.

The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Where the programme is offered on a flexible/modular basis, fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website:

Additional costs

The cost of the field trip (flights and accommodation) will be covered by UCL.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

As a degree apprenticeship, the costs of the programme can be covered through central government's apprenticeship levy, with the student apprentice also undertaking paid work for a planning organisation alongside their studies. To be eligible, students must have a sponsoring employer in England, who will employ them in a planning related role for the three year duration of the apprenticeship.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Bartlett Promise Sub-Saharan Africa Masters Scholarship

Deadline: 3 April 2024
Value: Fees, stipend and other allowances (Duration of programme)
Criteria Based on financial need
Eligibility: EU, Overseas

Bartlett Promise UK Master's Scholarship

Deadline: 31 May 2024
Value: Tuition fees plus £15,364 maintenance/yr (Duration of programme)
Criteria Based on financial need
Eligibility: UK

Next steps

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Spatial Planning at graduate level
  • why you want to study Spatial Planning at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme 
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme 
  • where you would like to go professionally by becoming a chartered town planner

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Choose your programme

Please read the Application Guidance before proceeding with your application.

Year of entry: 2024-2025

Got questions? Get in touch

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.