Urban Design MA
University of Westminster
London, United Kingdom
Full time, Part time
GBP 15,000 / per year *
Earliest start date
* international | UK: £9,500
In an increasingly urbanised world, there is growing international demand for urban design graduates. This course will equip you with the knowledge and skills you need to participate in this rapidly expanding profession. Urban design involves shaping the physical setting for life in cities. The pace of urban change, and the challenge of making cities efficient, sustainable and meaningful, demands creative solutions to design and management. The urban design courses at Westminster provide a coherent approach to issues that face our cities, combining structured academic study with live design projects, allowing you to develop practical skills, a theoretical understanding and an informed approach to sustainable urban development.
Our Urban Design MA is one of the longest established in the UK. It enjoys an excellent reputation, and our graduates are highly respected in the profession. Our students are from a variety of professions and backgrounds, including architecture, landscape architecture and planning, from the UK, Europe, and across the globe. They range from recent graduates seeking to expand their skill base before commencing their career or those considering a shift from an allied profession to established professionals seeking to specialise or develop a more informed critical approach. Our central London location allows you to interact with a huge variety of practitioners and organisations, as well as draw on the city's huge range of resources; you'll be at the heart of the debate over the future of cities.
The course places a strong emphasis on design, practical outputs and a multidisciplinary approach. While focusing on UK examples, the lessons are applicable to a wide range of international and economic contexts. This flexible and student-centred approach is highly valued by former graduates and their employers. The course is delivered by staff with many years' experience in practice, education, training, research, and consultancy in the UK and overseas. Outputs from the course combined into a portfolio demonstrate your ability to deal with the complexities of urban design in a practical and informed manner.
Top reasons to study with us
- Excellent course reputation – Our Urban Design MA is one of the longest established in the UK and has an excellent reputation in the industry.
- Learn from experts – You’ll be taught by staff with many years' experience in practice, education, training, research, and consultancy in the UK and overseas.
- Central London location – Our central London location allows you to interact with a huge variety of practitioners and organisations, as well as draw on the city's huge range of resources; you’ll be at the heart of the debate over the future of cities.
- Live-design projects – The course theory and design modules utilise London and the southeast of England as an urban laboratory where projects are based on active development sites or set within current areas of change, typically experiencing development pressures or other development challenges, similar to work taking place in practice.
Why study this course?
- Central London location
Our central London location allows you to interact with a huge variety of practitioners and organisations, as well as draw on the city's huge range of resources.
- Outstanding facilities
We have vibrant design studios and a cutting-edge Fabrication Laboratory.
- Excellent course reputation
Our Urban Design MA is one of the longest established in the UK and has an excellent reputation in the industry.
The programme is accredited by the RTPI as a Specialist Course. This is effectively half of the accreditation required for eligibility to take the APC (Assessment of Professional Competency) for full membership of the RTPI.
Graduates of this course typically find employment as urban designers in private consultancy or local authorities. Many find the course useful when developing careers in architecture, planning or landscape architecture.
This course has a strong vocational focus with a good reputation within the industry. Employment prospects are excellent for full-time students graduating from this course. Part-time students are usually already employed and promotion and career enhancement usually follow soon after completion.
While it is more common for graduates in urban design to pursue careers in design practice, some do move on to higher study, and this course provides a good grounding for those students who have taken up research degrees.
- Industry knowledge
You’ll be taught by staff with many years' experience in practice, education, training, research, and consultancy in the UK and overseas.
- Stand out from the crowd
With a growing international demand for urban design graduates, this course will equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to participate in this rapidly expanding profession.
- Employers around the world
The University’s Careers and Employability Service has built up a network of over 3,000 employers around the world, helping all our students explore and connect with exciting opportunities and careers.
This course benefits from links with a number of organisations, including:
- Design Council (formerly CABE)
- New London Architecture (NLA)
- The Design Review Panel
- The Royal Town Planning Institute
- The Urban Design Group
This course will prepare you for roles such as:
- Urban designer
- Master planner
- Strategic planner
- Urban design officer
- Conservation officer
- Urban architect
- Environmental planner
- Public realm designer
Graduates from our urban design courses have found employment at organisations including:
- Barton Willmore
- Broadway Malyan
- Broxbourne Council
- DAR Group
- Design Council
- Greater London Authority
- Hawkins Brown Architects
- IBI Group
- Levitt Bernstein
- London borough councils (a number of)
- Proctor & Matthews Architects
- PRP Architects
- Public Practice
- Urban Initiatives Studio
Westminster Employability Award
Employers value graduates who have invested in their personal and professional development – and our Westminster Employability Award gives you the chance to formally document and demonstrate these activities and achievements.
The award is flexible and can be completed in your own time, comprising a set of core and optional extracurricular activities.
Activities might include gaining experience through a part-time job or placement, signing up to a University-run scheme – such as mentoring or teaching in a school – or completing online exercises.
The following modules are indicative of what you will study in this course. Full-time postgraduate students study 180 credits per year.
- The Dynamic City: Urban Design and Planning in Context
- Urban Form and Growth
- Urban Design and Development Process
- Urban Design Project
- Place and Experience in Design of Urban Spaces
- Urban Design Field Trip
- Sustainable Cities and Neighbourhoods
- Dissertation / Major Project
You'll choose one option module to take.
- Information Management Applications for Urban Planning
- Emerging Landscapes and Urban Ecologies
- Environmental Policy, Assessment and Climate Change
- Conservation and Heritage
- Communities Towards Sustainability: Public Engagement
- Housing and Urban Regeneration
- Planning for Urban Risk and Resilience
- Sustainable Neighbourhood Development and Management
- International Spatial Planning Practice
- Streets, Places and Active Transport
- Land Use Planning and Transport
- Destination Development: Case Study Perspective
- Extended Essay Option for Planning, Transport and Urban Design
Program Tuition Fee
Scholarships and Funding
The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.
English Language Requirements
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