Semester 1 – PGCert awarded upon completion of modules
- Design Studio: Contemporary approaches to master-planning and the design of the public realm applied to a live site. As in practice, master-planning engages group discussions, negotiations and a communal effort to produce. This progresses to individual design projects for detailing the public realm of a section of the masterplan.
- Theory: Current theories on the shaping of urban form are integrated and tested in the design proposal:
- Practice: Tools for critical and reflective analysis are introduced and used in the design process:
- Output: This stage produces portfolio quality masterplans which address contemporary issues of concern across a range of settlement types and scales. It integrates theories and practical tools for the production of urban form which are applied in the professional field. The individual projects allow for the detailed design of a public realm taking the masterplan a stage further and in a different design scale.
See 'Intensification of Huangpu' by Thomas Jephson, Syafiqa Hanim Sharuddin, Savini Rajapakse, Ye Lu, Rakesh Muthah, Sujai Chandira Sekaran
See 'Dobson Square Oxpens' by Owen Reading
Semester 2 – PGDip awarded upon completion of modules
- Design Studio: Urban form in challenging context. This studio expands urban design to the international and future context of settlements focusing on urban intensification. Cities from all over the world are analysed for qualities and principles that deliver good places when undergoing intensification. The group masterplan tests urban form undergoing a range of densities and is analysed for the threshold for urban quality and intensity. Individual public realm design projects are worked on at the level of street detailing and the building scale.
- Theory: International urban theories for design and planning:
- Research: Methods for engaging in urban design research:
- Output: Masterplan and public realm design of an international or UK site addressing urban intensification; essay covering international theories on urban form applied to your city or issues of choice; design project focusing on advanced theories of urban form; research proposal for dissertation stage.
See 'Mexico Masterplan' by Alec Parcell, Charis Boulton, Ciaran Gallen, Farissa Salmanzadeh, Mikel Spooner, Snehal Oswal
See 'Beirut Masterplan' by Lucas Docherty, Siddartha Thomas, Robert Cresswell, Isabel Raad, Sarju Patel
See 'Vertical Public Space' by Petya Tsokovan
Summer Term – MA in Urban Design awarded upon completion of dissertation
- Dissertation – Research by advancing and testing design studio project OR your own selected topic or urban issue which can be located in any country or city of choice.
See 'Access to Nature and the Extinction of Experience' by Matthew Laidman
Teaching and learning
The MA in UD includes a variety of activities that enable us to deliver theoretical and practice-based content to develop your knowledge and skills for engaging in dialogues of urban futures for a range of professional practices including architecture and planning.
- Peer-learning is encouraged through group work and the critical assessment of individual projects
- Studio set-up and design based learning which engages a mixed group of students from different backgrounds, cultures and professional affiliations mirrors real environment in practice
- Theory and Practice modules are merged and applied in the Design studio projects
- Problem based learning allow an in depth understanding of urban issues and proposed solutions
- International projects as well as the diverse international student cohort provides exposure to a range of different cultures and urban phenomena
- Independent research to develop critical thinking and creative approach to problem solving; focus on specific area of research interest
- Use of multi-media for developing skills for communicating and work on strengths of individuals
- Field trips and site visits provides a live-in experience and sense of scale for spatial forms
For full time students, all teaching is delivered in two days which allows the rest of the week for independent studio project development. Part time attendance is one day per week.
Approach to assessment
Assessment combines group work and individual projects with a range of mediums to include reports, design posters, videos, oral and visual presentations. Studio tutors and professional practitioners engage with the students in the process of delivering assessed work. This process allows for professional quality output.
UK field studios – London provides a rich field resource for understanding the sense of scale, new interventions and the live-in quality of the public realm. Field studios becoming teaching references for the design process as well as a means for testing urban theories.
International field trip – organised yearly to expose students to specific urban qualities such as housing and social equity, regeneration, creative cities and economic rise, participation and planning. Cities visited have included Amsterdam, Lisbon, Rotterdam.
Please note that whilst we try to keep costs to a minimum, you will be required to pay for materials and printing associated with course work. These should amount to no more than £150 over the programme.
No specific equipment is required, although a reasonable laptop may be useful to undertake assignments off campus.
For students taking the full-time programme, normally two full days of attendance is required during semester time; and for the Masters stage, fortnightly or equivalent tutorials with the dissertation supervisor.
For part-time students, attendance is normally one day a week during the teaching semesters.
In addition, students are expected to attend for a three day induction spread over the week prior to the start of teaching and the first week of semester one.
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published
on the website. For more information, please visit our
Changes to programmes