Institution / Queens University Belfast
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Planning & Development

This Masters degree, which is accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), is designed to take graduates from a broad range of disciplines, and through an intensive programme of project work, lectures, seminars, study visits and supervised research, prepare them for a career in planning and development.

The degree programme is overseen by professional Partnership Boards of practitioners, academics and members of the Institutes, which ensures that the knowledge, skills and value awareness imparted during education and training are up to date and cutting edge.

Why Queen's?
This MSc is professionally accredited and has a strong emphasis on the practical skills and knowledge required for theoretically-informed practice. The degree incorporates a week-long study visit to a venue outside Northern Ireland during the Semester 2, and work shadow experience in Northern Ireland on the planning appeals process after the end of Semester 2 examinations.

Additionally a two-day planning practice study visit will be made to a venue in Great Britain or Ireland in early July. Students are expected to contribute to the costs of these study visits.

Entry requirements

Normally a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University.

Typically, entrants to the programme come from backgrounds in geography, sociology, estate management, environmental science, architecture and economics, although recent entrants have included those with backgrounds in arts and humanities.

Applicants with qualifications below 2.2 Honours standard (or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University) will be considered on a case by case basis, if they can demonstrate appropriate experience, acceptable to the School.

International Qualifications
For information on international qualification equivalents please select Your Country from the list on our International Students website.

Additional Information for International Students
International students (for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their studies. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes. Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required.
*taken within the last 2 years

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see:

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this programme, our partner INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability to entry to this programme.

For additional information, please visit our website.
• English for University Study - an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level.
• Pre-sessional English - a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English
• See Also The Into Graduate Diploma In Finance Which Combines Academic Study, Intensive English Language Teaching And Study Skills To Prepare You For Entry Into A University Masters Degree.


1 year full-time or 2 years part-time.

Learning and Teaching
This programme involves project-based team-working and field studies outside formally allocated lecture times. Full-time teaching is spread across 5 days (Mon-Fri) and part-time is designed to facilitate day-release with teaching on 1 day per week.

Contact Teaching Hours (per Week)
18 hours full-time and 9 hours part-time

Careers or further progression

Career Prospects
Graduates are employed in a wide range of public, private and voluntary sector careers, within the UK and Ireland, and also overseas. The programme includes career guidance and briefing sessions by practitioners and professional institute representatives.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

Further enquiries

Dr Brendan Murtagh
School of Natural and Built Environment
Tel: +44 (0)28 9097 4742

Subjects taught

Modules include
Semester 1:
• Introduction Planning Theory and Practice
• Environmental Planning & Governance
• Planning Skills & Ethics
• International Planning Studies
• GIS & Spatial Analysis

Semester 2:
• Design in the Built Environment
• Property Development
• Professional Practice Project
• Community Planning & Regeneration
• Planning Law and Practice

Semester 3:
• Independent Specialist Research Project

Assessment method

Assessment is by formal examination, individual and group project submissions, and a 60 credit 20,000 individual dissertation that combines oral presentation and written submission.

Application date

Postgraduate Taught
In general, there are no closing dates for the majority of courses (those with closing dates will be highlighted in the Course Finder). However we advise you to apply as early as possible, particularly for those courses where there is a high demand for places. Early application is also important for international applicants to allow sufficient time to obtain a student entry visa.

Postgraduate Research
There is no standard closing date. You should however check both the University’s website and refer to the relevant School/Institute webpage for information on deadline dates for postgraduate funding applications, as these will also determine when your application for admission should be submitted.

Enrolment and start dates

Year of entry: 2017

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