CONTINUING FOR A MASTER OF PLANNING DEGREE
Bachelor of Urban & Environmental Planning students may consider pursuing the Master’s Degree. This may be accomplished in fewer than four graduate semesters if course planning is done carefully.
The Master of Planning degree program is a two year course of study oriented toward students coming from arts and science or design backgrounds. The graduate curriculum consists of core courses, specialized courses concentrating in functional areas of planning, applied courses emphasizing the synthesis of planning analysis and values in specific settings, and a professional internship.
The core curricula of the undergraduate and graduate programs are similar in focus and subjects. The differences are found in the breadth and depth of material covered in individual courses depending on the level of offering. The elective courses focusing on the functional planning elements are offered to both upper level undergraduate and graduate students. Graduate students choose a Planning Concentration from existing ones, or design a specialty in consultation with a faculty member. Undergraduates are not required to have a Planning Concentration or an internship.
Admission to the Master’s Program with advanced standing will be determined through the regular formal graduate admissions procedure. The same information (GRE’s, Letters of Recommendation, and a Letter of Intent) will be required. Careful attention will be given to the Letter of Intent which should indicate the rationale for a specific course of study. The program is intended for students with strong undergraduate records.
Prospective students may apply for advanced standing in the Master’s Program after graduating from the University of Virginia BUEP Program, or other recognized or accredited Bachelor of Planning Programs.
Students may apply for advanced standing of up to 20 hours. The number of hours to be advanced is based on an evaluation by the faculty of the student’s proposed program and undergraduate planning work. Only students having a cumulative overall GPA of 3.5 will qualify for advanced standing. Those not meeting this requirement for advanced standing would still be able to waive specific courses by following the procedure for waivers (see below). The grade in an individual course for which a waiver is granted must be at least a B.
General Curriculum Requirements for Students Receiving Advanced Standing:
A program permitting advanced standing to holders of undergraduate degrees in Planning would retain all of the main components of the Master of Planning curriculum, but it would reduce the total credits required beyond a Bachelor’s Degree. The Advanced Standing Program would require students to complete:
- The five core courses, or their equivalents, required for the Master of Planning Degree (Planning Process and Practice, Legal Aspects of Planning, Methods of Planning Analysis, Urban Theory and Public Policy, Planning Theory and Practice).
- Twenty (20) hours of 5000-level credits taken at the undergraduate level.
- A functional Planning Concentration of six courses or more, including the application of appropriate planning processes to real situations.
- A professional internship.
- Two or more Planning application courses, at least one after receipt of a Bachelor of Urban & Environmental Planning Degree.
- A minimum of 30 Credit hours of graduate work taken after receipt of a Bachelor of Urban & Environmental Planning Degree.
- PLAN 6090 (Planning Theory) taken as a graduate student.
- The Common Course, unless waived due to schedule conflicts
- Fifty or more credits at the 5000 (graduate) level or above for the Master of Urban & Environmental Planning Degree.
- The minimum 30 credits of post-Bachelor course work in regular graduate courses, independent study, or thesis not in professional practice, work-study, or fieldwork.
A Planning Concentration is to be completed from advanced planning courses taken in the last year of the Bachelor of Urban & Environmental Planning degree and the year of graduate study.This concentration should be among those defined by the Planning Department or worked out with an advisor largely from planning courses. The Planning Concentration shall consist of at least 6 courses, including 5000-level courses taken for the BUEP, and at least one Planning Application Course taken in the graduate year in the Planning Concentration. The student also must complete a summer internship of ten weeks or a work-study program amounting to 10 hours per week for two semesters.The internship usually would be taken during the summer between the final undergraduate year and the graduate year.
When a student has previously completed a course, earning a grade of B or better, which has a demonstrated counterpart core course at U.Va., the student’s advisor - (or the Admission Committee which is understood to include the Department Chair), upon consultation with the instructor of the course to be waived - may eliminate the requirement for that student to take the U.Va. core course. No reduction in hours for the Master’s degree results from waiving a course.
Graduate Financial Aid will be awarded in the same manner as to all graduate students. Application for financial aid from the Department of Planning should accompany the application. Application to the Office of Financial Aid also should be made.
This curriculum could permit students to start on a second Master’s Degree. Admission and acceptance of such courses must be approved by the administrators of the second Master’s Degree.