Urban Design MArch is a design-oriented and project-based programme, with a strong research component. Students work within a studio environment to explore how our our cities can be improved with innovative design, informed by theoretical research on the special structure of urban form.
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.
This programme is now full for 2020 entry and we are not accepting any more applications.
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.
A minimum of a second-class UK degree in an appropriate subject or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with extensive experience in the field may also be considered. A design/creative portfolio is also expected. Applicants will be asked to submit a portfolio of their design work once their completed application has been received, and should not send or upload work until it has been requested.
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: Standard
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 aims to bridge the gap between architecture and urbanism, and has a strong emphasis on physical design and radical experimentation, combined with rigorous analysis and state-of-the-art theories and methodologies. Students explore design decisions at both a strategic level and the more detailed level of urban regeneration.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of four core modules (105 credits) and an urban design final project (75 credits).
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MArch in Urban Design.
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.
- Introduction to Urban Design Theory (15 credits)
- Design Thesis Report (30 credits)
- Bartlett Architecture Skills Elective (B-Pro Courses) (15 credits)
- Urban Design Thesis Initial Projects (45 credits)
- Urban Design Thesis Final Project (75 credits)
- There are no optional modules for this programme.
Research project/design project
The programme culminates with students undertaking a major design project, the 'Urban Design Final Project' in combination with an individual written submission, the 'Design Thesis Report'.
There is one field trip (optional) annually as part of the programme.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops, case-study presentations, site visits and field trips. As a project-orientated programme, all theoretical research work and experimental design exploration culminates in physical design propositions for specific design projects. Assessment is through design portfolio, essays, oral presentations and a written design report.
There is an optional field trip for this programme annually, which costs students a maximum of £500 each. We estimate that students spend between £250-£500 on specialist materials throughout the programme.
All students work differently so costs incurred depend on the approach they take to the brief given. The school encourages students to use recycled materials in their models and presentations – not only is it sustainable, but also cost effective and potentially innovative. The school also offers subsidies for exhibition costs.
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.
The Bartlett School of Architecture is recognised as one of the world's leading schools of architecture and graduates from our Master's programmes are highly sought after.
Having built up a specialist expertise in urban design, gradates from this programme enjoy a reputation as forward thinkers in cities around the world. Recent graduate destinations have included design agencies and architectural practices, as well as further academic research.
Why study this degree at UCL?
The programme brings together designers and thinkers from across the world for design-led research into the challenges of urban living. Students explore new ideas for the city through the development of design experiments, which speak to the most pressing contemporary issies, such as climate changeand the role of digital technologies.
Students work with internationally renowned experts in cutting-edge design and fabrication. They are encouraged to pursue an experimental approach, which combines design techniques, theoretical investigations and digital skills, using specialist tools and technology. They develop an awareness of computation as a cultural condition shaping our culture, and a powerful paradigm for generating design proposals.
The architecture coming out of the UCL Bartlett is characterised by a high level of invention and creativity. The school is internationally known as a centre for innovative design.
Department: Bartlett School of Architecture
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?
The programme is designed for both recent graduates and qualified professionals who wish to be part of an experimental design environment dealing with the future of our cities. The majority of candidates come from an architecture background, but a small percentage come from other disciplines including social sciences, planning, engineering and geography.
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Urban Design at graduate level
- why you want to study Urban Design at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
- what your intellectual ambitions are
- your understanding of working practices in the field
- your awareness of issues relating to the subject
- 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.
UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.