City scape

Landscape Built Heritage & Design

Drawing on the European Landscape Convention and other instruments, this MA explores the complex interrelationships that exist between built heritage, planning, design and landscape in different places. Anticipating, managing and making decisions about the character of our cities, neighbourhoods and rural areas are difficult challenges everywhere in the world. Also, these decisions are often made within the kind of technical, political and bureaucratic processes that many communities, developers and even specialists find difficult to engage with. Graduates of this MA programme will become effective and persuasive participants within these processes: their real-world and cross disciplinary skills and competencies will help to ensure that the decisions made about built environments, heritage and landscape assets everywhere will be more robust and sustainable.

This programme covers the three main subject areas (Landscape, Built Heritage and Design) through a set of inter-connected teaching modules framed by a solid framework of spatial planning subjects that give it a practical, decision-making focus.

The landscape component (which, for this MA, embraces both urban and rural settings) draws on technical, cultural, aesthetic and procedural perspectives as a basis for teaching and learning. The core modules address landscape context, character, open space and change at both the strategic scale (city, city- region, rural district) and at the local level (neighbourhood, site, open space). Built heritage and design are addressed through problem-solving based modules that cover urban design and conservation as well as a range of skills that cover effective communication, presentation and engagement.

These are complemented by a set of planning modules that address city planning contexts, rural planning contexts, the legal planning processes that govern decision-making about landscape and a range of optional modules from cultural geography, ecology and architecture.

Why Choose This Course

This MA is rather unique in that, rather than focusing on specialist understandings of individual landscape and design topics, it takes a broad approach to the subject in real-world, decision-making contexts. It is suitable for early-career graduates from a wide variety of subject areas and it is particularly relevant now that the European Landscape Convention has widely been adopted. Citizens with a general interest in heritage and the environment would also be welcome and, with certain modules being offered on a stand-alone basis, it will also appeal to established practitioners who have continuing professional development needs in this emerging area.

Students who complete this course will know how various stakeholders can address issues of landscape change in effective ways and be comfortable with the basic principles of conservation, protection and preservation of built heritage. As a key principle they will also have a rounded sense of how new development can respect the character, traditions and quality of existing places while - in appropriate circumstances - facilitating change, improvement and development.

In the final semester, drawing on the learning progression of the other modules, a major research project / dissertation focusing on a real-life practical case study is carried out. Students who wish to leave the programme without completing the dissertation may, if they have passed all of the taught modules, opt to be conferred with a UCC Higher Diploma in Landscape, Built Heritage and Design.

Please click here for more detail of the programme content

Students who pass Part 1 (including those who pass with an aggregate score of less than 50%) may exit the programme and be conferred with a Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape, Built Heritage and Design.Students who progress to Part 2 but neither pass nor complete Part 2 may also be conferred with a Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape, Built Heritage and Design.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have a degree at Second Class Honours level (or higher) in an appropriate subject in the fields of Science, Arts, Humanities, Social Science, Law, Commerce, Engineering, Architecture, or Government or similar.

Selection will be based on academic achievement, written expression of interest, an interview and any relevant work experience.

Applicants who hold a degree at a level lower than Second Class honours may also be considered following a review of their individual qualifications and their experience in a relevant field and admission will be subject to the approval of the College of Arts, Celtic Studies, and Social Sciences

For applicants whose first language is not English, evidence of proficiency in English will be required.

If you are applying with Qualifications obtained outside Ireland and you wish to verify if you meet the minimum academic and English language requirements for this programme please click here to view the grades comparison table by country and for details of recognised English language tests.

Non-EU Candidates

Non-EU candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to Irish university primary degree level. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. To verify if you meet the minimum academic requirements for this programme please visit our qualification comparison pages.

For more detailed entry requirement information please refer to the International website .


Full-time 1 year.

This programme is taken on a full-time basis over 12 months across two 12-week teaching terms. Lectures will be scheduled on two to three days per week and there will also be afternoon studio sessions or tutorials each week, all supported by individual study/reading time. There will be mandatory residential and day fieldtrips, both within and outside Ireland in the year, and students will be asked to contribute towards the cost of these.

Careers or further progression

Skills and Careers Information

Our graduates will have the capacity to be effective in the non-governmental sector, the government or local government sector, the property and business sector and other fields that have a stake in the management and design of built heritage, landscapes and the quality of places. It will be a useful complementary qualification for specialists in architecture, planning, building, environmental science, public policy, infrastructure, energy, community development, archaeology, cultural geography and a range of other fields.

Further enquiries

Contact details for this course
Brendan O'Sullivan
+353 86 2151589

Ms.Tina McSweeney
+353 (0)21 490 4356

Assessment method

All but two of the core modules are assessed through continuous assessment (essays, practical assignments, field reports, group assignments, presentations, design assignments and tutorials) in order to develop practical competencies in the relevant subject areas. Written examinations are held for the remaining core modules and may also be held for some of the elective (optional) modules that are delivered by different departments.

Application date

Closing dates

Closing Dates for Application

Applications for 2018 start dates will open on November 1st 2017.

EU Applicants: UCC operates a rounds closing date system for the majority of postgraduate taught programmes (detailed below).

Some programmes have a specific closing date. Applicants are advised to consult with the postgraduate prospectus for programmes with a specific closing date.

The UCC rounds EU application system closing dates for Postgraduate Taught courses are detailed below. However, we would advise applicants to apply as soon as possible.

Deadline for receipt of Applications: Offers will be made:
For all completed applications received by January 15th 2018 Offers will be made by January 29th 2018

For all completed applications received by March 1st 2018 Offers will be made by March 15th 2018

For all completed applications received by May 1st 2018
Offers will be made by May 15th 2018

For all completed applications received by July 2nd 2018
Offers will be made by July 16th 2018

Late applications may be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis for any courses that have remaining capacity for places.

While there is no official closing date for Research courses applicants are advised to submit their application at least two months ahead of their proposed start date. There are four official Research start dates – September/October, January, April and July.

Non-EU Applicants:

Please visit the following page for further information for Non EU applicants

Enrolment and start dates

Start Date 10 September 2018

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