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Professional Doctorate in MA Town and Regional Planning

About This Professional Doctorate

Course Description

About the course

Accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI)

Our one-year masters will help you get started in the planning profession.

The course examines the factors that shape cities and rural areas. We’ll show you how research is used in policy-making and evaluation. You’ll develop research and design skills, and specialise in an aspect of planning.

Where your masters can take you

Our graduates work in planning, real estate and related professions with private sector planning and real estate consultants, local authorities, policy analysts and international development and design agencies.

How we rate

The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) says we’re the best RTPI-accredited planning school in the UK. 85 per cent of our research is classed as ‘world-leading’ ‘internationally excellent’ with ‘outstanding impacts’.

How we teach

Nothing is more important to us than your career. We work closely with industry to make sure our courses are up-to-the-minute and relevant so you’ll learn the skills you need to make it to the top in your chosen profession.

You’ll go on site visits and and take part in exercises that simulate real global challenges. Past field trips have included trips to London, Seoul, Cairo and Istanbul. We also organise work placements with planning agencies.

There are lectures, seminars, computer workshops and tutorials. You’re assessed on your coursework and a dissertation.

Autumn semester

Core modules:

  • Perspectives on Spatial Planning and Development
  • Values in Planning
  • Research Methods
  • Spatial Planning Systems or Urban Design in the Global South

Spring semester

Core module:

  • Integrated Project or International Planning Project.

Examples of optional modules

  • Cities of the South: Planning for Informality
  • Planning Law
  • Issues in Housing
  • Sustainable Development in Practice
  • Advanced Software
  • Skills for Urban Design

Study in Europe

You have the option to spend the spring semester at one of our European partner universities.

Visit the MA Town and Regional Planning page on the University of Sheffield website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Alice May

2513.jpg For me, the best aspect of the course has been gaining an understanding of the theoretical background behind the day to day practice of planning. I had a good grasp of the day to day processes by which planning works as a result of my previous work experience, but it was really beneficial to understand the historical evolution of the planning system and get to grips with why we do the things we do to control the development of our built environment.

Each of the modules was challenging in different ways, and used a number of different learning techniques in the delivery of that particular aspect of the course which kept it interesting and fun. A personal favourite was the ‘simulation exercise’ which we undertook in the autumn term, which consisted of a mock-up planning inquiry, with different members of the course forming the planners, developers and the community group. As the ‘planners’ we had to put together a strong case as to why the decision should be upheld. The fact that the appeal was dismissed and the planners won I’m sure had nothing to do with how much we enjoyed it! I also particularly enjoying researching and carrying out my dissertation during the summer term; it was extremely demanding at times but the satisfaction at the end of it was huge!

I now have a firm understanding of the theoretical background behind the planning system we have in place today which puts me in a confident position to talk about the complexities in the planning and property industry, and apply them to everyday situations which is essential

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Entry Requirements

For UK students, the usual entry requirement is a 2:1 degree or evidence of equivalent achievement (for example, a professional qualification combined with work experience).

You’re welcome to apply with a 2:2 degree, although we would normally expect to see evidence of work experience or other relevant activity.

English language requirements
Overall IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or equivalent.

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