The production, reproduction and transformation of urban space via socially, economically, and environmentally just methods presents a complex challenge for professionals. This MSc combines cultural, social, economic, political and spatial analysis to recalibrate the urban design project, presenting a holistic response in which informality and marginality are central features.
The programme will equip students with a political economy understanding of space; a comprehension of the needs, abilities, aspirations and forms of resistance of urban dwellers; the ability to respond with strategically co-ordinated proposals to leverage local abilities to meet local needs; and an ability to critically engage with the practice of urban design and architecture in developmental processes – particularly in the Global South.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of three core modules (90 credits), either one or two optional modules (30 credits) and a development and planning dissertation (60 credits).
Please note, the availability of some modules may be dependent on student numbers
All MSc students submit a 10,000-word report on a topic related to the main themes of the programme. The topic can be chosen to enhance career development or for its inherent interest.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of weekly lectures, seminar presentations, group exercises and workshops. The BUDD studio includes a fieldwork project in an urban reality of the Global South, developed in partnership with local organisations, networks of communities, slum dweller federations, universities and governments alike. Students are encouraged to explore different tools, concepts and ideas throughout the programme and test these during the field project. Assessment is through coursework, design work, written examinations and the 10,000-word report.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Building and Urban Design in Development MSc
The programme enables graduates to work in NGOs and local government – facilitating community organisations and households to improve their living conditions. Graduate destinations range from UK-based organisations in the public, private and community sectors, to governmental, inter-governmental and non-governmental organisations, which operate in a development capacity in the South. Recent graduates have also been employed by international NGOs and aid and development agencies and architectural and design practices. Some graduates return to their home countries and engage in urban design and architecture practice, teaching, or research of urban development there; others have successfully sought employment away from their own countries.
Recent career destinations for this degree
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
The UCL Bartlett is the UK's largest multidisciplinary faculty of the built environment, bringing together dozens of scientific and professional specialisms required to research, understand, design, construct and operate the buildings and urban environments of the future.
The Development Planning Unit is an international centre concerned with promoting sustainable forms of development, understanding rapid urbanisation and encouraging innovation in the policy, planning and management responses to the economic, social and environmental development of cities and regions, especially in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Its programmes are supported by international agencies as well as by national and provincial governments.
The Building and Urban Design in Development (BUDD) programme in particular reflects on the necessity of design practices to contribute to changing the mainstream paradigm of working with the urban poor, with communities and the city itself.
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Development Planning Unit
81% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
The MSc Technical Architecture provides advanced level study in contemporary technical, environmental and professional issues for architecture. You work on design-led projects focusing on the creative and technical consideration of architecture, and carry out a range of applied projects to develop professional skills.
Core modules provide key knowledge and skills, which are then applied to design projects. Lectures and projects look at emerging theory and practice in architectural design, technology and construction for new and existing buildings within the UK and global contexts.
All modules address contemporary issues in architecture. There is a focus on environmental and sustainable design and how they are achieved through inventive thinking, creative technical design, scientific understanding and computer aided predictive modelling. You learn to use design software including REVIT, ArchiCad and Ecotect.
The course assessments are flexible so you develop your own areas of interest and expertise. Projects can be located in your home country, either in the UK or internationally, or you can explore alternative locations.
The part-time route enables you to work and study at the same time, and you can link your projects to your practice.
In the final stage of the course you produce an original and significant piece of research-led design in the major project module, supported by a research module. This is usually in a subject relevant to your area of architectural interest, technical specialism or practice. You use these concluding modules to identify and develop critical expertise for your chosen career.
The course has a strong professional focus. A key feature is an international field trip as part of the interdisciplinary practice module, which you study alongside students in associated professions such as planning, regeneration, real estate and surveying. Other professional modules allow you to work as a consultant to a real client or to study new or alternative forms of computer aided design.
The course is versatile in its teaching approaches and provides educational and professional development opportunities for a range of applicant profiles. These include UK and international students with architecture, construction or environment related degree qualifications and mature applicants with a proven track record in practice.
You are taught by an expert team of staff that includes experienced architectural, digital and environmental practitioners and academics. We also have teaching links with leading consulting engineers such as ARUP and Price and Myers.
This programme has been recognised by the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT) as meeting established standards in terms of course content and qualifies the holder for associate membership of the institute (ACIAT).
CIAT recognises Sheffield Hallam University as an accredited Centre of Excellence for learning and teaching in architectural technology.
Full time – September start – typically 12 months
Full time – September start – typically 16 months
Part time – September start – typically 36 months
The course provides knowledge and skills for a range of careers. These can include senior positions in architectural practice, setting up your own company or moving into college or university level teaching.
Specialist careers include • architectural conservation • practice management • digital design • environmental design and consultancy.
You can also use the course to move from your current career into a more architecture-related one. This is particularly relevant if you currently work in areas such as building surveying, construction or some forms of engineering.