Planning at Macquarie University

At Macquarie University, the Department of Geography and Planning offers two unique planning programs that are accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia: the Bachelor of Planning and the Masters of Planning.  Join us to learn how to shape cities, support communities and do ecologically sustainable development. We offer the leading programs in Sydney integrating social policy and environmental science into land use planning.  Our degrees are for both domestic and international students, and we prepare you to work in Australia and internationally.

What is planning?

Planners work on the social and environmental fabric of our cities and regions, creating places to live, opportunities for employment, for recreation, and for community.  Some work to shape what gets built where. Some work to shape major infrastructure, like road and rail networks.  Some work to shape social infrastructure, for healthcare, education and community services. Some work to protect the environment and to protect people from environmental impacts. There are many different ways in which planners work on the underpinnings of our communities and places.  You can follow your interests through planning!

Planners work for governments, in the private sector, and for non-profits; they write policy and plans, lead consultations, do research, and contribute to designs and masterplans.  We will help you develop skills in all these areas.

Why study planning at Macquarie?

Our degrees give you the skills and knowledge to work as a professional planner.  We teach innovative approaches to contemporary social, urban and environmental issues in urban and regional planning, and we help you develop skills in social planning, sustainability and environmental protection. Our degrees are unique in Sydney in their interdisciplinary focus on integrating social and environmental sciences into the planning and design of sustainable cities and regions.

At Macquarie you learn from academics and practicing professionals who have strong professional skills and innovative research programs in the fields of urban studies, environmental management, social justice and sustainability in urban and regional settings.  Macquarie University is in one of Sydney's major economic development zones, with complex planning issues on your doorstep.  It’s a great location from which to explore the challenges of urban planning.

Bachelor of Planning

How we plan our cities and regions today will profoundly affect future generations in a climate-changed world.  The Bachelor of Planning will equip you with the theoretical and practical skills to work in the planning profession. Innovative in its approach to understanding contemporary social, urban and environmental issues in urban and regional planning, this degree focuses on recognising the social and cultural diversity of places, and the importance of cross-cultural approaches to research, plan making and impact assessment. It will not only prepare you for a career in which you have the power to shape more liveable and sustainable urban and regional futures but also give you a distinctive and innovative edge among your peers

Program highlights

Planning students do not just learn inside the classroom but are engaged in practical activities that enhance learning throughout their degree. Students participate in field trips and learn from planning professionals from both the public and private sectors.  Some of the experiences and opportunities for you to do planning related research, community engagement and work-integrated learning include:

  • A focus on research methods and the opportunity to participate in the Geography and Planning field school.
  • A focus on planning knowledge and skills taught by professional planning practitioners and experienced urban researchers.
  • The opportunity to work on real-world planning case studies throughout your program.
  • The opportunity to do a planning-related Professional and Community Engagement workplace unit in your final year.

Master of Planning

The Master of Planning prepares you for a wide range of professional roles in planning - in urban planning, social planning, place management, regional planning, natural resource use, and environmental impact assessment, for example.  For those changing careers, it is a 2 year degree with foundation and core subjects, and specialisations.  For those with a relevant undergraduate degree, e.g. students building professional skills on top of a generalist environmental or social science degree, it is an 18 month program.  If you already have some professional experience, you can use the Master of Planning to extend your knowledge in areas of particular interest with a 1 year program.

We bring together social and environmental science, and practitioners’ know-how, to create a rich professional development experience for established and aspiring planners.

Program highlights

  • Training in foundations of planning, including planning law, strategic planning, assessing development proposals and decision making
  • Major planning project, and an opportunity to work as part of a small student consultancy group for a local client
  • Establish yourself as a professional urban and regional planner with an accredited qualification and core professional knowledge
  • Extend your planning knowledge by following interests in a wide range of areas, e.g. social policy, sustainable development and environmental protection
  • Develop skills for working on the interface between planning and law with the environmental law specialisation
  • Focus on biophysical / socio-political challenges with the environmental planning specialisation
  • Focus on the challenges of building liveable communities with the social policy and planning specialisation.

Come study planning with us and build your career in planning!

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Last updated: 18 Dec 2019