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Urban Planning (*)
Community Development (*)
*Courses Taught by George K. Chou at Northrop University
American Planning Association Southern California Planning Congress
Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning Urban Institute
National Association of Regional Councils Resources on Urban Planning
UCLA School of Public Affairs (Urban Planning Top in Nation) Urban Planning
San Francisco Redevelopment Agency World Bank Urban Development Web site

San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association

Term Papers on Urban Planning

Association of Bay Area Governements

Norton Professional Books

Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Hall

Resource for Urban Design Information

Planner's Network

The PLanning & Development Network

Urban Land Institute Case Studie

Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA)

Planning education
University-level planning education is offered as an academic degree in urban, city or regional planning, awarded as either an Associate's degree, Bachelor's degree, Master's degree, or Doctorate.
Since planning programs are usually small, they tend not to be housed in distinct "planning schools" but rather, as part of an architecture school, a geography department, or a public policy school, since these are cognate fields. Generally speaking, planning programs in architecture schools focus primarily on physical planning and design, while those in policy schools tend to focus on policy and administration.
As urban planning is such a broad and interdisciplinary field, a typical planning degree program emphasizes breadth over depth, with core coursework that provides background for all areas of planning. Core courses typically include coursework in history/theory of urban planning, urban design, statistics, land use/planning law, urban economics, and planning practice. Many planning degree programs also allow a student to "concentrate" in a specific area of interest within planning, such as land use, environmental planning, housing, community development, economic development, historic preservation, international development, urban design, transportation planning, or geographic information systems (GIS). Some programs permit a student to concentrate in real estate, however, graduate real estate education has changed giving rise to specialized real estate programs.
The Planning Accreditation Board (PAB) accredits university programs in North America leading to bachelors and masters degrees in planning. The accreditation process is based on standards approved by the PAB and its sponsoring organizations: the American Planning Association (APA); the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) (the professional planners’ institute within the American Planning Association); and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP).
Also, with accreditation, a planning program allows their graduates the benefit to sit for the AICP Exam earlier, compared to a fellow student with a degree from a non-accredited program or school.
Programs that desire accreditation through the PAB (Planning Accreditation Board) must meet strict guidelines, first to be considered for a candidate, then to actually be accredited. First the program in question must apply to be a candidate, which is a multiphase process.The first step is to make sure the program has successfully completed the five preconditions for accreditation. The five preconditions are:
  • Program graduation of at least 25 students in the degree to be accredited.
  • Program's parent school must be accredited by institutional accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
  • Formal title of program and degree offered must include the term "Planning".
  • Undergraduate programs must offer 4 full time years of study or equivalent, while graduate programs must be 2 full time years of study or equivalent.
  • Program's primary goal is to educate students to become a practicing planning professional
Once these conditions have successfully been met by the program, the next step to be completed by the program is completion and submitting of the Self-Study Report.This report serves as the basis of review for the Planning Accreditation Board, which ends in an meeting with a representative of a program before the PAB for questions about their program and review. There is also an application fee of $1,925.
If candidacy is awarded, the Planning Accreditation Board will send a three member team to visit and formally review the program during a semester. The three member team will meet with faculty, staff, students, and members of the local planning community. The team will then submit a report to the Planning Accreditation Board, in which the program will have a chance to question and comment on the report in the final interview in front of the PAB. The board then decides if the program is awarded accreditation.
Accreditation length is dependent on the extent the program complies with requirements of the Planning Accreditation Board, with the maximum length awarded is 7 years.Programs can be awarded re-accreditation upon another review, similar to that of initial accreditation.
Master of City Planning
The Master of City Planning (MCP) or is a one- to two-year academic/professional Master's degree that qualifies graduates to work as urban planners. Some schools offer the degree as a Master of Community Planning (MUP), Master of Community Planning, Master of Regional Planning (MRP), Master of Town Planning (MTP), Master of Planning (MPlan), Master of Environmental Planning (MEP) or in some combination of the aforementioned (e.g., Master of Urban and Regional Planning), depending on the program's specific focus. Some schools offer a Master of Arts or Master of Science in planning. Regardless of the name, the degree remains generally the same.
A thesis, final project or capstone project is usually required to graduate. Additionally, an internship component is almost always mandatory due to the high value placed on work experience by prospective employers in the field.
Like most professional Master's degree programs, the MUP is a terminal degree. However, some graduates choose to continue on to doctoral studies in urban planning or cognate fields. The PhD is a research degree, as opposed to the professional MUP, and thus focuses on training planners to engage in scholarly activity directed towards providing greater insight in to the discipline and underlying issues related to urban development.
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PROSPERITY CONSULTING GROUP

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www.e-Architect.us

www.e-Engineer.us

www.e-Planner.us

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