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Study urbanism

A holistic approach to understanding the urban context
A postgraduate qualification in urbanism will provide you with specialised knowledge in contemporary planning theories and debates while instilling professional expertise in key areas of urban design, planning and policy.

What is urbanism?

The study of urbanism embraces an integrated and multidisciplinary approach to the theory, policy and design of how we make and shape cities.

It is concerned with how the stakeholders and groups that comprise a city create the varying built environments and urban patterns in which we live. This includes the important roles that planning, design and architecture contribute to this process.    

This program is open to a broad range of applicants interested in developing professional careers in urbanism, with a choice of specialisations in urban planning, urban design or heritage conservation.

As a graduate of this course you will be a highly sought-after professional able to work across development, policymaking and design of the built environment. The urban planning specialisation is accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia (PIA).  

Courses in urbanism


This degree is a two‑year, 96-credit-point version of the specialist 18-month master’s programs in Urban DesignHeritage ConservationUrban and Regional Planning. This extended timeframe enables you to experience a cross‑disciplinary approach while still specialising in a specific area of professional interest.

Urban Design

The Master of Urban Design will help you to develop expertise in different types of urban projects, and inform your professional practice with a thorough understanding of the policy environment that drives design and development.

Urban and Regional Planning

The Master of Urban and Regional Planning focuses on developing an understanding of how cities and sites are constructed: physically, socially and environmentally. You will develop the professional communication skills, reasoning and analytical processes required to make valuable contributions to the policy, technical and regulatory aspects of urban and regional planning. The degree is accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia.  

Our inspiring students

Chakshu Bansal

Master of Urbanism 2018

“I decided to specialise in urban design when I developed an interest in the spaces between buildings along with a passion for a community-centric approach to design during my architecture degree. The Master of Urbanism at the University of Sydney offers a holistic approach to understanding the urban context. It combines urban design, urban planning and heritage conservation in one program.”

Gunika Singh 

Master of Urbanism 2017 

"The Urbanism program prepared me to understand the complex dynamics of a city and how our cities have evolved over time. The course provided opportunities to develop theoretical understanding of planning issues and pragmatically test that knowledge in workshops and internships. I had the opportunity to intern with the Strategic Planning Unit of a local government council through the recommendation of my professor. It was an enlightening experience as I developed an appreciation of ‘real world’ planning issues. The practical experience gained during the internship alongside the Urbanism program proved invaluable in developing my career aspirations and obtaining future employment with both private and government organisations. If I hadn’t studied the Urbanism course at the University of Sydney, I would not have found my passion and purpose at such a young age."


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