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  MSc Urban and Regional Planning

University of Sheffield    Department of Urban Studies and Planning

Full time September MSc 1 year full time Award winner

About the course

Equip yourself for the planning profession by examining the factors that shape cities and rural areas and exploring how research is used in policy-making and evaluation.

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.

This MSc is innovative and intensive, with your study carefully structured. The first semester focuses on developing core skills and knowledge in planning, focusing on theories and practices of planning and policy making in the UK, Europe and the fast developing Global South.

Read more about this course

Entry Requirements

Minimum 2:1 undergraduate honours degree.

We may also consider your application if you do not meet the standard academic requirements but you have relevant professional experience.


Home (2023 annual fee) : £10,800
Overseas (2023 annual fee) : £22,000

Students applying for this accredited masters programme are eligible for the RTPI Future Planners bursary.

 Course Content

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Student Profiles

Alice May

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!

Helen Blenkharn

The MA was a valuable experience that provided me with the knowledge and skills to work in planning and the opportunity to apply for jobs across a wide range of sectors.

Kajol Maheshwari

The most important reason for shortlisting Sheffield for my master’s degree was that the course is fully RTPI accredited, and this enables me to pursue a wide range of career opportunities. The University’s reputation and highly regarded research focussed coursework also contributed to my decision.
As for my Degree choice, My undergraduate degree in Architecture introduced me to the basic principles of Urban Planning, which I found to be my calling after gaining two years of work experience in the field. Also, the dynamic and wide range of courses at Sheffield has made my curriculum and passion for the subject more fun and interesting than ever before.

I have been enjoying my time at the University, and there are several things that stand out to me as my favourites. One of the things that I find particularly interesting is the freedom we are given to choose sub-topics for our assessments. This has allowed me to explore a range of research interests in different contexts. Additionally, I love the fact that the professors are approachable and the entire department is very understanding and helpful. While all of the coursework has been fascinating and diverse in terms of subject matter, sub-topics, and choices, my favourite module so far has been Urban Development in the Global South. This module was incredibly engaging and interesting, and I enjoyed the small readings that we had to complete every week. I particularly enjoyed the continuity of the module and the detailed feedback that every student received, which allowed me to improve my work and deepen my understanding of the subject matter.

After I finish my course, my goal is to work in a social impact organisation where I can use my previous work experience and the skills that I have gained during my time at the University of Sheffield. I am particularly interested in council jobs, research opportunities, and urban consultancies, as I believe these roles will allow me to make a meaningful contribution to society. The employability team at USP has done great work providing all the essential help for preparing CVs, applications, and interviews and this has made me more confident and well-prepared.

Sheffield is a fantastic city to live in especially as a student. The city has a brilliant mix of nightlife and outdoor activities, while also being pocket friendly!

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