The Master of Urban Planning program has four integrated components: a core curriculum, an area of concentration, an internship, and a studio. Its purpose is to train planners who, like their counterparts throughout the nation, have general expertise in planning theory and methods, an understanding of urban structure, specialized knowledge of a chosen planning concentration, and the skills and intellectual maturity to operate in the professional arena.
The 54-credit program is structured to provide students with the expertise essential to professional practice and to allow for flexibility to accommodate individual professional and academic aspirations. The core curriculum (21 credits) provides basic training in planning. It has a dual purpose: to place planning in its societal and theoretical context and to teach the skills of the profession. The area of concentration (12 credits) allows for in-depth training in a specific subfield of general planning practice. The studio (6 credits) provides experience in applied planning. Unrestricted electives (12 credits) allow for the exploration of a range of planning topics in elective courses and through independent research.
In organizing their programs, students work closely with faculty advisers.
Each student must also take one 3-credit internship. As interns, students may work for city and suburban planning agencies, neighborhood development groups, banks, municipal housing or budgeting units, planning journals, and other groups approved by the department. For many students, field experiences have led to full-time employment in their internship agencies after graduation.
In addition, the department has several internal work opportunities generated by the faculty and the Center for Community Planning and Development, which count towards the internship requirement. Faculty members routinely include in their research grant proposals funds to support graduate research assistants.
The Hunter College graduate program in urban planning is accredited by the Planning Accreditation Board (PAB), which is the national accrediting body of urban planning degree programs. The PAB is sponsored by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP), the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), and the American Planning Association (APA). Students with multiple professional interests may wish to pursue joint degree programs with other New York universities. For example, a joint master of urban planning/juris doctor, available through a cooperative program with Brooklyn Law School, allows students to earn the two degrees in four years of full-time study.
Requirements for Admission to the Planning Program
Traditionally, most applicants come from the social sciences (economics, geography, sociology, political science, and urban and American studies), engineering, and architecture. English majors and students of religion, art history, and business have also enrolled. While many students enter Hunter directly from undergraduate study, a large percentage have spent time away from school and return to develop their knowledge and expertise or to prepare for a new career. Applicants must meet the general admission requirements for Hunter graduate programs, except for the Graduate Record Examination, which is not required. These requirements include the submission of transcripts and two letters of recommendation, along with a completed application form obtained from the Hunter College Graduate Admissions Office. Applicants are encouraged to visit the department during scheduled open house sessions and to contact the program director by e-mail with specific questions. Applicants are also encouraged to reach out to individual faculty members who may share their professional or research interests.
Requirements for the Master of Urban Planning
The degree requires 54 credits of graduate study. Of these, 42 must be selected within course offerings of the Hunter College graduate program in urban planning. With the approval of the department, 12 credits may be elected from other graduate programs.
Credits are distributed as follows:
|Area of Concentration
Areas of Concentration
Areas of Concentration
The graduate program offers the following areas of concentration: Community Planning and Advocacy (including Human Services), Sustainability and the Environment, Transportation and Infrastructure, Housing and the Built Environment (including Urban Design and Historic Preservation), Economic Development, and General Practice. Each concentration is designed to give students a working knowledge of specific foci within the field of planning. To fulfill the concentration requirement, students select four courses related to the concentration in consultation with their adviser, from the suggested list.
Students with special interests may create their own concentration. In developing their programs, students may combine Hunter courses with the resources of the larger City University community or other approved institutions. Some individually tailored specializations may include Education Planning and Policy, Immigration and Global Change, and Urban Information Systems.
Representative Courses in the Areas of Concentration
Community Planning and Advocacy (including Human Services)
Sustainability and the Environment
Transportation and Infrastructure
Housing and the Built Environment (including Urban Design and Historic Preservation)
To solidify knowledge and skills gained in the core curriculum and other courses, students are required to participate in a 6-credit planning studio. This requirement is satisfied by completion of URBP 73700 (6 credits) or URBP 73800 (Planning Studio I, 3 credits) and URBP 73900 (Planning Studio II, 3 credits), which are taken consecutively. Ordinarily students take the studio course in their second year of study or after completion of at least 30 credits of work.