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UCL Urban Laboratory

Teaching

The UCL Urban Laboratory provides an exciting culture of interdisciplinary urbanism with which all UCL undergraduate, postgraduate and research students can engage. Please see below for the wide range of urban programmes on offer at UCL.

Undergraduate

Architecture BSc

This degree programme aims to inspire students in a diverse range of experiences so as to develop an independent, creative and rigorous approach to design within a vibrant culture. 

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Architectural and Interdisciplinary Studies BSc

This programme addresses architectural space from an interdisciplinary perspective, exploring alternative approaches to design and creative practice. Students can tailor a flexible programme suited to their interests both within and outside the built environment. 

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Arts and Sciences BASc

This innovative new programme at UCL allows students to design their own interdisciplinary degree, with a major in one of four Pathways: Cultures, Health and Environment, Sciences and Engineering, or Societies. 

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Geography BA or BSc

This is an integrated geography programme which combines physical and human geography as well as offering opportunities for specialisation. Those choosing the BA will usually have studied social science or humanities subjects at A level or equivalent, and those choosing the BSc will have usually studied science subjects.

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Planning and Real Estate BSc

This BSc builds on the core programme offered within the School of Planning focusing on urban planning and design and combines it with a focus on property markets, investment decisions and real estate economics. 

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Urban Planning, Design and Management BSc

Urban planning is concerned with the complex management of change within the built and natural environment. This BSc gives students the skills to work in both traditional planning careers and in various related professional and specialist areas.

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Urban Studies BSc

This programme offers great flexibility for students curious to explore a broader range of studies relating to the built environment, in combination with other subjects with a different focus offered elsewhere in UCL and other University of London institutions. 

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Postgraduate

Adaptive Architecture and Computation MSc 

Provides a comprehensive understanding of the skills required to create generative, emergent and responsive forms through exposure to real programming environments.

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Architecture MArch

Encourages a rigorous professional approach to architecture within a highly speculative and creative context.

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Architecture and Digital Theory MRs

Explores digital theory, history, and cultures in all their guises: from design and fabrication, to many related fields that are being affected and transformed by the new digital paradigm. 

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Architecture and Historic Urban Environments MA

This new programme pioneers the development of a more diverse and creative approach to the reinterpretation and reuse of historical environments in cities around the world, such as through imaginative architectural designs and urban strategies, and including issues of cultural heritage.

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Architectural Design MArch

Encourages students to discover their individual expression via continuous discussion of their work in tutorials and reviews.

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Architectural History MA

Provides a coherent and intensive forum where students develop and test their own approach to the subject, engaging with established and emerging subjects, theories and methodologies.

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Building and Urban Design in Development MSc

Combines building and urban design related to the concerns and conditions of developing countries, linking the methods and practice of ‘design’ with complementary ‘developmental’ processes.

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Civil Engineering MSc

Equips students with the analysis and design skills necessary for employment as professional civil engineers, providing a solid academic background for becoming chartered engineers.

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Construction Economics and Management MSc

Designed to equip students with the economics and management skills to analyse the problems that confront senior managers, policy advisers and decision-makers in the construction industry.

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Environment and Sustainable Development MSc 

Examines conventional approaches in development planning, and the environmental conflicts generated by them, with specific reference to developing countries and urban regions.

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Environmental Design and Engineering MSc

Interdisciplinary programme that aims to improve the energy, health and environmental performance of new and existing buildings.

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Environmental Systems Engineering MSc

Brings together systems engineering and environmental engineering to devise and implement solutions working towards the goal of sustainable development and resource efficiency.

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International Planning MSc 

Aims to broaden students’ appreciation of planning and urban theory while providing the necessary skills to engage in critical and creative problem-solving, with a strong international and comparative focus.

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International Real Estate and Planning MSc

Offers a unique focus on the relationship between the property development process and the planning systems of Europe and beyond.

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Light and Lighting MSc

A holistic approach to lighting design, considering the human response to light and lighting, science and technology, together with the design of lighting as an integrated part of architecture and the built environment.

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Mega Infrastructure Planning, Appraisal and Delivery MSc

Designed to equip students with the multidisciplinary competences required to plan, appraise and deliver large-scale and complex infrastructure programmes and projects.

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Project and Enterprise Management MSc

Teaches concepts, tools and techniques employed in managing projects from their earliest stages of definition and development through to operations and maintenance.

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Science and Public Policy MPA and Engineering and Public Policy MPA

Focused on developing the skills to leverage scientific and engineering knowledge and expertise within public decision-making processes surrounding societal challenges, not least those of local government.

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Smart Cities MRes

This new programme incorporates various methodologies to study urban systems, reflecting on how technology is shaping cities. It is unique in its focus on the core research challenges relating to the infrastructure of smart cities - from their operational functions and planning through to management and control, and optimisations to explore the notion of a city as a laboratory for innovation.

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Smart Cities and Urban Analytics MSc

This new programme is unique in its focus on the core challenges relating to the infrastructure of smart cities, from their operational functions and planning through to management and control. The programme reflects the challenges that technology is making to the operation of, and our understanding of, the city.

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Spatial Design: Architecture and Cities MRes

Using the theoretical and analytical framework of space syntax, this programme involves the study of architecture from the scale of buildings to small-scale urban design through to planning entire cities.

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Spatial Design: Architecture and Cities MSc

A course that mediates between the desire of architects and urban designers to produce high-quality designs and the imperative of architecture to provide a better place for society.

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Spatial Planning MSc

Aims to build students’ appreciation of planning and urban theory while providing them with the necessary skills to engage in critical and creative problem-solving.

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Sustainable Urbanism MSc

Offers urban professionals a theoretical understanding of the range of disciplines that together contribute to the delivery of sustainable urbanism.

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Transport and City Planning MSc

Draws on the latest thinking and debates in transport and urban planning, providing an interdisciplinary consideration of transport planning as part of the development of the sustainable city.

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Urban Design B-Pro MArch

A design-oriented and project-based programme, with a strong research component, aiming to enhance the quality of cities by bringing together innovative design and the latest theoretical research on the structure of urban form.

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Urban Design and City Planning MSc

Focuses on urban design as a creative planning tool and the interface between urban design and city planning. Offers a comprehensive understanding and exposure to urban design theory and practice, and its interface with city planning.

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Urban Development Planning MSc

Explores the challenges of urban governance in the global south, seeking to expand the room for manoeuvre for socially and spatially just urban development planning.

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Urban Economic Development MSc

Explores how economic solutions can contribute to urban sustainability and well-being and aims to train professionals who are equipped to manage sustainable and viable cities in both developed and developing countries.

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Urban Regeneration MSc

Engages with the decay of cities and their planned renaissance. Provides the opportunity to critically analyse complex urban issues and address them in a creative, strategic manner through appropriate implementation plans.

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Urban Sustainability and Resilience MRes

Introduces students to the radical new technologies and materials available to shape the future of the urban environment.

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Urban Studies MSc

An advanced interdisciplinary urban-studies programme, set up as part of the UCL Urban Laboratory in 2008. The programme is aimed at students from a professional background who seek an opportunity for critical reflection and skills enhancement for their career development and also for students who wish to consider embarking on a research career in the urban field. The M.Sc. is a useful first step towards independent writing and research at Ph.D. level. The programme’s director, Andrew Harris, serves on the Urban Laboratory Steering Committee and Directors’ Advisory Group. Ben Campkin, Urban Laboratory Director, and Nick Phelps, Urban Laboratory Steering Committee member, are co-convenors on the M.Sc. programme. Pushpa Arabindoo, Lecturer in Urban Studies and Geography, also runs core modules on the M.Sc., and many other Steering Committee members teach occasional classes.

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MPhil/PhD

UCL has excellent arrangements for interdisciplinary supervision for PhD and postdoctoral study across a wide diversity of urban topics. If you are interested in applying to study for an urban-related PhD at UCL, please contact the relevant department directly. The Urban Laboratory can provide advice if you are unsure of which department to contact, or if you would like to discuss a proposal that would link directly to our work. Please contact urbanlaboratory@ucl.ac.uk

MPhil/PhD Architectural Design

This programme allows designers who are especially able and reflective to undertake research in keeping with the Bartlett School of Architecture's speculative and experimental ethos.

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MPhil/PhD Architectural History and Theory

The Bartlett School of Architecture's MPhil/PhD Architectural History & Theory programme allows students to conduct an exhaustive piece of research into an area of their own selection and definition.

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MPhil/PhD Advanced Spatial Analysis

The Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis accepts students who wish to follow a PhD in the areas that CASA is expert in, which is generally the application of computers and simulation methods to urban and regional problems and the built environment.

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MPhil/PhD Built Environment

The Bartlett School of Graduate Studies offers research degrees across a full range of built environment disciplines including: Energy, Environmental Performance, Light and Lighting, Sustainable Heritage, Facility Management and Workplace Innovation. 

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MPhil/PhD Development Planning

PhD research areas at the Development Planning Unit embrace issues of direct and current relevance to development processes in a range of countries around the world. 

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MPhil/PhD Energy

At the UCL Energy Institute, students work alongside experienced researchers in a dynamic, multidisciplinary environment. The best students are hand picked for first-class training and prepared to hit the ground running as the energy pioneers of tomorrow.

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Engineering Doctorate (EngD) in the Bartlett

UCL Engineering Doctorate Centre in Virtual Environments, Imaging and Visualisation (EngD VEIV) studies natural, artificial and social phenomena using computational modelling and simulation in support of decision-making processes in built environment.

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Engineering Doctorate (EngD) in Urban Sustainability and Resilience

The centre provides funding opportunities for industry to carry out sustainability and resilience research with UCL. The centre offers students the chance to study for their doctorates, designed in collaboration with industry.

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MPhil/PhD Geography

The UCL Department of Geography invites applications from suitably qualified students for PhD opportunities. Contact the appropriate member of staff directly to propose a research topic or to request further details of a specific project.

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MPhil/PhD Planning Studies

The MPhil/PhD in Planning Studies is designed for graduates of any discipline who wish to make a career in planning or in related fields (such as housing, urban regeneration, transport planning, urban design), in teaching or research. 

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