MRUP Regional & Urban Planning

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 120)

In today’s complex and rapidly changing world, with the threats posed by climate change, economic crisis and rapid urban growth, planners face the challenge of creating places that combine environmental quality with a vibrant economy, quality of life and distributive justice.

This two-year professional planning degree develops the requisite conceptual knowledge and practical skills required by planners in this increasingly complex environment.

You will develop an understanding of the administrative, legal and policy frameworks in which spatial planning operates and the social, political,
economic and environmental challenges facing planning. You will become familiar with the use and application of GIS methodologies and will
develop skills for plan making and transportation planning.

Depending on your interests, you choose to specialise in either development and design, or environmental planning. 

  • A structured combination of theoretical discussion, practical studio-based learning and independent research.
  • Intensive learning experience which is policy relevant and practice related.
  • Potential in year 2 (based on competitive selection process) for 1 semester exchange with the Master in Urban Planning Program at the University of Illinois in Chicago.
  • Accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute and the Irish Planning Institute, which are internationally recognised qualifications

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Applications are welcome from graduates from any discipline, though undergraduate disciplines with a thematic link to Planning are preferred. The programme is also suitable for those with a professional background in a field related to Planning who might wish to develop and broaden their skillset.

The Master of Regional and Urban Planning programme is a two-year professional planning programme, providing graduates with the requisite skills and knowledge to begin a career as a professional planner, with specialisation in either development and design or environmental planning. The MRUP is aimed at providing an integrated and inclusive understanding of the challenges required to create places that combine environmental quality, with a vibrant economy, good quality of life and distributive justice. The programme is underpinned by a critical and questioning approach aimed at equipping our students with intellectual confidence and the professional and ethical judgement to make decisions, which promote and ensure sustainable spatial development and manage environmental change.  The programme fosters a learning environment that draws on the research and expertise of our academic staff, combined with insights from innovative practitioners in the planning, development and environmental field. Uniquely, we can draw on our location in Dublin and Ireland to reflect on the challenges of a rapidly developing vibrant city and modern economy set in an unsurpassed natural environment.  The MRUP utilises a mix of lectures, hands on computer lab based work, group projects in a studio setting, regular student presentations, independent research and academic and professional writing, to provide graduates with the requisite skills and knowledge needed in the rapidly changing global environment facing planning.

  • On successful completion of the programme students should be able to: Understand how spatial planning operates within the context of political, institutional and legal frameworks, and understand the wider social, economic, political and environmental context for planning sustainable environments
  • Appreciate planning and environmental policy research, exhibit the skills of autonomous researchers and recognize the value of research as an input into improved planning policy and practice.
  • Apply their knowledge and research skills to generate integrated and well substantiated responses to spatial planning challenges at various spatial scales.
  • Work effectively both on their own and as part of a team in an interdisciplinary context.
  • Demonstrate effective research, analytical, evaluative and appraisal skills and the ability to reach appropriate evidence based planning decisions.
  • Communicate effectively verbally, graphically and through written documents and to communicate ideas, concepts, knowledge and conclusions to peers, specialist and non-specialist audiences within an interdisciplinary environment.
  • Diagnose problems, define solutions and make decisions based on balancing a range of competing professional and stakeholder interests.
  • Understand the challenges and responsibilities of balancing competing economic, social and environmental requirements in shaping space, will be open to critically assessing these, reflecting on them and acting in a professional and ethical manner in the interests of the common good.
  • Appreciate societal diversity and recognize the importance of equality and equality of opportunity in spatial planning processes.

Graduates of this Masters are to be found working in roles such as a professional planner, GIS consultant, researcher, policy advisor, property consultant or community delelopment co-ordinator. These graduates find employment with a wide variety of companies including international planning institutes, national planning agencies, government departments, local authorities, transportation agencies, planning consultancy firms, or utility companies to name but a few.

MRUP Regional & Urban Planning (W032) Full Time
EU          Year 1 - € 7310
EU          Year 2 - € 7310
nonEU    Year 1 - € 18300
nonEU    Year 2 - € 17900

MRUP Regional & Urban Planning (W178) Full Time
EU          Year 1 - € 8330
EU          Year 2 - € 8330
nonEU    Year 1 - € 23800
nonEU    Year 2 - € 22900

***Fees are subject to change
Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website. Please note that UCD offers a number of graduate scholarships for full-time, self-funding international students, holding an offer of a place on a UCD graduate degree programme. For further information please see International Scholarships.

  • Applicants should present an undergraduate degree with at least a lower class honours or equivalent (GPA at least 2.8), in any academic field, with a preference for fields of study related to Planning and/or equivalent relevant professional experience. 
  • Applicants whose first language is not English must also demonstrate English language proficiency of IELTS 6.5 (no band less than 6.0 in each element), or equivalent.

Trevor Newman

I had always heard stories about the great culture, beautiful landscape, and hospitality of the Irish people, so Ireland had always been a place I wanted to visit. When it came to choosing a masters programme, Ireland was the first place I looked. I chose the MRUP at UCD, because of my interest in the module titles and the international accreditation by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). The focus of  the school on international examples and the opportunity to write a thesis about any planning related subject was also of interest to me. The knowledge and quality of teaching within the MRUP programme really stood out and the diverse subject matter covered throughout the course gives a great deal of flexibility for future interests and job opportunities.

The following entry routes are available:

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised