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Master of Urban Planning

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M.U.P. Degree Requirements

All students must complete 48 credit hours, which normally involves 4 semesters of full-time study. The required courses are

General (6 credit hours)

UBPL 736 Planning Institutions 3
UBPL 763 Professional Practice 3

Techniques (9 credit hours)

UBPL 705 Economic Analysis for Planners 3
UBPL 741 Quantitative Methods I 3
UBPL 742 Quantitative Methods II 3

Theory (6 credit hours)

UBPL 815 History and Theory of the Planning Process 3
UBPL 850 Urban and Regional Theory 3


The curriculum requires each student to specialize in one of the following substantive areas:

  • Environmental planning,
  • Housing and development planning,
  • Land use planning and urban design, and
  • Transportation planning.

The student should declare a specialization by the third semester of the course of study. In each specialization, the student must complete a course in theory and policy, methods, and implementation. The minimum number of credit hours for the major area depends on whether the student pursues the thesis or the nonthesis option. For the thesis option, the student takes at least 9 hours in the major area. For the nonthesis option, the student takes at least 12 hours in the major area.

The specialty courses are as follows:

Environmental Planning

Theory and Policy

UBPL 765 Principles of Environmental Planning 3


UBPL 738 Environmental Planning Techniques 3


UBPL 773 Environmental Planning Implementation 3

Supplementary Courses

UBPL 730 Introduction to Land Use Planning 3
UBPL 735 Site Planning 3
UBPL 802 Special Topics: Policy and Methods in Environmental Planning 3
POLS 624/EVRN 620 Environmental Politics and Policy 3
ARCH 600 Special Topics in Architecture: Sustainability in Context 3

Housing and Development Planning

Theory and Policy

UBPL 710 Introduction to Housing Policy 3
UBPL 715 “Community” in Neighborhood Planning and Design 3


UBPL 764 Real Estate Development I 3


UBPL 714 Local Economic Development Planning 3
UBPL 716 Community and Neighborhood Revitalization 3

Supplementary Courses

UBPL 760 Historic Preservation Planning 3
UBPL 768 Real Estate Development II 3
UBPL 802 Special Topics: Historic Preservation Economics 3

Land Use Planning and Urban Design

Theory and Policy

UBPL 730 Introduction to Land Use Planning 3


UBPL 735 Site Planning 3


UBPL 766 Urban Design Implementation 3

Supplementary Courses

UBPL 662 Twentieth-Century American Landscape 3
UBPL 739 Issues in Growth Management 3
UBPL 760 Historic Preservation Planning 3
UBPL 764 Real Estate Development I 3

Transportation Planning

Theory and Policy

UBPL 750 Introduction to Transportation Planning 3


UBPL 756 Travel Demand Forecasting Methods 3


UBPL 757 Transportation Planning Implementation 3

Supplementary Courses

UBPL 758 Urban Mass Transportation 3
CE 781 Traffic Engineering Characteristics
CE 881 Traffic Engineering Operations 3

Free Electives

Besides the specialty courses, thesis students must take 3 additional credit hours, and nonthesis students must take 9 additional credit hours of elective courses. 6 of these hours may be outside the Department of Urban Planning.

Thesis Option

The thesis provides an opportunity for the student to apply individual research skills in the context of her or his interest. The thesis is a continuation of the student’s course of study rather than a separate academic effort. The format, medium, and focus of the thesis vary with the problem addressed. 6 hours of academic credit are given for the thesis. A student desiring to prepare a thesis must develop, with the assistance of a faculty adviser, a thesis proposal to be submitted to the faculty thesis committee no later than the first day of classes of the semester before the semester in which the student plans to graduate. The committee’s approval is required before the student may pursue the thesis option. A final general examination on the thesis and course work is held.

Nonthesis Option

The comprehensive examination may be taken as an alternative to the thesis. The examination provides a learning experience that encourages the student to synthesize the knowledge gained through course work and tests the student’s competence as a generalist/specialist planner. The examination consists of the student responding to a scenario or case study in which one is asked to synthesize knowledge gained in one's course work and apply it within a particular context. No academic credit is given for the examination.

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