Sustainable Urbanism MSc

London, Bloomsbury

The Sustainable Urbanism MSc has been designed to bring together urban sustainability theory, policy and design in a ground-breaking programme which is not offered anywhere else in the UK. It is intended for those interested in a career in built environment related professions with a focus on urban sustainability/sustainable development and takes a multidisciplinary approach.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2024/25)
£17,300
£8,650
Programme also available on a modular (flexible) basis.
Overseas tuition fees (2024/25)
£34,400
£17,200
Programme also available on a modular (flexible) basis.
Duration
1 academic year
2 academic years
5 academic years
Programme starts
September 2024
Applications accepted
Applicants who require a visa: 16 Oct 2023 – 05 Apr 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

Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree (or higher) from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. There is no particular subject requirement as the MSc provides an 'initial' planning education for graduates with cognate or non-cognate degrees. Where candidates fail to meet the standard requirement (i.e. they hold a degree of a lower classification), the department will take into account professional experience in planning or a related field when deciding whether to admit a candidate. Applicants who do not hold a first degree may, in exceptional cases, be admitted to the programme if they are able to demonstrate considerable senior-level professional experience in planning or a related field. In such situations, a special qualifying essay will be set

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

This MSc offers urban professionals a theoretical understanding of the range of disciplines that together contribute to the delivery of sustainable urbanism, and explores the conceptual and technical skills necessary to create sustainable urban environments.

Who this course is for

The programme is directed at urban professionals from a range of fields including planning, property, design, landscape and transport, seeking to enhance their understanding of sustainable processes and practices. It will also be valuable to graduates completing their initial professional training who wish to specialise in this field.

What this course will give you

The UCL Bartlett School of Planning has a strong history of teaching and research, and has been at the forefront of planning research and teaching for almost 100 years. It is one of the foremost planning schools in the United Kingdom, and students are taught by a range of top theorists and practitioners working in the field of sustainable urbanism. UCL is ranked #1 in the UK for Construction, Surveying and Planning according to The Guardian Good University Guide 2024.

This MSc programme is fully accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). It is also accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) if taken as a specialist year following an accredited three-year undergraduate planning degree.

The foundation of your career

This programme is ideal for those who have no relevant work experience and want to forge a planning career right through to those who have extensive relevant work experience but want to consolidate their skills and knowledge. Students are taught by a range of theorists and sustainable urbanism practitioners including Professor Yvonne Rydin, Professor Jo Williams, Professor Robin Hickman, Professor Matthew Carmona, Professor Lauren Andres and Professor Catalina Turcu.

Employability

Graduate students from The Bartlett School of Planning have been very successful in gaining subsequent employment. At present there is a growing demand for our Master's graduates from a wide range of both public and private employers around the world. While a main source of employment remains in local government and central government planning and in planning-related consultancy (Arup, Aecom, BioRegional, WWF, Future of London, etc), graduates are also employed in the housing and transport sectors; planning, urban regeneration and environmental agencies; public and private utility companies; urban design consultancy (various planning, engineering and architecture firms); and teaching and research.

Networking

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.

The programme provides students opportunities for networking with academics, practitioners, and others who share an interest in sustainable urbanism. In addition to interactions on taught modules, the field trip offers the chance for exchange, and free extra-curricular events (such as co-design workshops and BSP hosted public events) will be announced throughout the year.

Accreditation

Successfully completing the Sustainable Urbanism MSc (as a full MSc rather than a PG Diploma) will make you eligible for graduate membership of the RICS.

If you hold an RTPI accredited Undergraduate degree then successfully completing the Sustainable Urbanism MSc (as either a full MSc or a PG Diploma) will make you eligible for 'licentiate' membership of the RTPI.

Teaching and learning

The School of Planning advocates for engaged and interactive learning. Alongside lectures, seminars and tutorials we include field trips, group project work, presentations and individual assessments. We also have significant input from industry experts and external contributors. These diverse approaches to teaching and learning are developed to enhance your experience on the Sustainable Urbanism MSc.

The programme is delivered through theoretical discussions, focused case study methods and hands-on project work. Depending on travel restrictions, it may include a field trip to an overseas location, including site visits, field exercises and guest lectures. Assessment is through individual and group work, essays, examination, skills-based practical work, and the personal project.

In terms 1 and 2 full-time students can typically expect between 8 and 15 contact hours per teaching week through lectures, workshops and tutorials. In term 3 students will be completing their own dissertation research, keeping regular contact with their dissertation supervisors.

Outside of lectures full-time students typically study the equivalent of a full-time job, using their remaining time for self-directed study and completing coursework assignments.

Modules

You will undertake modules consisting of five compulsory modules, elective module(s)  and a research project/dissertation.

The Sustainable Urbanism MSc is organised around three core themes: sustainable thinking, sustainable places, and delivering sustainability. Each theme includes 30 credits worth of modules, the first being theoretical or lecture-based and the second being practical or project-based. Two further elective 15 credit modules are chosen from the Bartlett or wider at UCL. A 60 credit dissertation or major research project completes the programme.


As a part-time student you will typically take your seven taught modules over a period of two years (four teaching terms), and will complete your dissertation/major research project in term three at the end of your second year.

The Sustainable Urbanism MSc is organised around three core themes: sustainable thinking, sustainable places, and delivering sustainability. Each theme includes 30 credits worth of modules, the first being theoretical or lecture-based and the second being practical or project-based. Two further elective 15 credit modules are chosen from the Bartlett or wider at UCL. A 60 credit dissertation or major research project completes the programme.

Modular/flexible students can take their seven modules during term time and after completing these will move to their dissertation research. The modular/flexible approach can be completed in 2 - 5 years.

The Sustainable Urbanism MSc is organised around three core themes: sustainable thinking, sustainable places, and delivering sustainability. Each theme includes 30 credits worth of modules, the first being theoretical or lecture-based and the second being practical or project-based. Two further elective 15 credit modules are chosen from the Bartlett or wider at UCL. A 60 credit dissertation or major research project completes the programme.

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 Sustainable Urbanism.

Fieldwork

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.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. 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 Part-time
Tuition fees (2024/25) £17,300 £8,650
Tuition fees (2024/25) £34,400 £17,200

Programme also 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: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Additional costs

The purchase of books may constitute an additional cost, but there is no requirement to purchase any book as part of the programme. Travel and accommodation for the compulsory fieldtrip is paid by the Bartlett School of Planning.

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

Centenary Scholarships are availalbe to Sustainable Urbanism MSc students through The Bartlett School of Planning. 

In our faculty, The Bartlett Promise Scholarship aims to enable students from backgrounds underrepresented in the built environment to pursue master's studies. Please see the UK Master's scholarship and Sub-Saharan Africa Master's scholarship pages for more information on eligibility criteria, selection process and FAQs.

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

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 £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Sustainable Urbanism at graduate level
  • why you want to study Sustainable Urbanism 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 with your degree

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.

International students who require a Tier 4 visa are strongly advised to submit their application before June.

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

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