Want to shape sustainable, productive, equitable and inspiring built environments? Through the Bachelor of City Planning (Honours), you’ll gain the skills, experience and accreditation you need for a career with impact in urban planning. 

 

Faculty
Faculty of Arts, Design and Architecture
Delivery Mode
Face-to-face (includes blended)
Award
Bachelor of City Planning (Honours)
Commencing Terms
Term 1
Duration (Full Time)
4 Year(s)

Overview

The Bachelor of City Planning at UNSW is a four-year full-time honours degree through which you’ll learn to shape sustainable, equitable, healthy and inspiring built environments.

City planning is an exciting, varied and progressive profession. UNSW’s planning degree will equip you to work at the interface between development, land use, environment and urban design. You’ll gain the knowledge, skills, and career focused experience to turn creativity and critical thinking into real-world solutions - shaping the future of our cities and regions.

Work experience is a defining feature of this degree. As part of the Arts, Design & Architecture (ADA) community you’ll work alongside students and professionals from across the built environment, just as you would in the workplace. In your third year, you’ll undertake a Practice Year, where you’ll focus on practical and professional experience, benefitting from UNSW’s strong ties to industry and world-leading research in urban planning. 

Key features

You’ll explore city planning through key subject areas. These include:

  • Urban society, theory, history
  • City economics and development
  • Environment, sustainability and resilience
  • Planning law and administration
  • Strategic planning
  • Social and community planning
  • Urban design and plan making
  • GIS and city analytics
  • Infrastructure and transport planning
  • Housing policy and urban renewal
  • Rural and regional planning
  • Heritage planning

Why study this degree at UNSW?

  • Increase your employability through an honours level outcome
  • Gain professional accreditation with the Planning Institute of Australia (PIA)
  • Access networking events with the PIA Young Planners 
  • Connect with Australia’s leading urban research centre, the City Futures Research Centre
  • Be supported by our diverse, open and inclusive Arts, Design & Architecture community
  • Study at a Built Environment School that ranks 33rd in the world and 4th in Australia  (QS World University Rankings, 2021)
  • Learn through research-informed teaching
  • Prioritise career success – UNSW won the Australian Financial Review’s Most Employable Students Award in 2020
  • Benefit from strong industry links and partnerships
  • Access world class alumni connections
  • Join a global top 50 university (QS World University Rankings, 2021)
  • Join a community that’s part of the prestigious Group of Eight (Go8) universities
Program Code
3362
CRICOS Code
088837E
Campus
Kensington
UAC Code
423600
Total Units of Credit (UOC)
192
Indicative Enrolments
259

Want to see more from UNSW Arts, Design & Architecture?

Entry requirements

2021 Lowest Selection Rank
80
2021 A levels
13
2021 IB Diploma
29
2021 Lowest ATAR
73.65
    1. The 2021 Lowest Selection Rank (LSR) is the adjusted rank (ATAR plus adjustment factors) you would have needed to gain entry to this degree in 2021.
    2. The 2021 A levels score is based on four Advanced Level (A2) subject. Entry scores are calculated from the best three or four A2 subjects (excluding repeated subjects) using the following values: A*=6, A=5, B=4, C=3, D=2, E=1. At most one Applied A Level subject may be included in the best four subjects used to calculate the aggregate.
    3. The 2021 IB Diploma is an indication of the IB you would have needed to gain entry to this degree in 2021. It is to be used as a guide only.
    4. The 2021 Lowest ATAR is the lowest ATAR (before adjustment factors were applied) to which an offer was made. Where <5 is listed, this indicates that less than 5 ATAR-based offers were made and so the score has not been published. N/A indicates no offers were made on the basis of ATAR.
  • At UNSW, we are committed to ensuring prospective students have all the information they need in order to make informed decisions about their study options.

    To assist you in gaining a better understanding of how Admissions works at UNSW, we have provided you with a summary of ATAR offers and the student profile.

    We hope this information will help you identify the degree that is right for you.

Adjustment Factors


We offer a range of adjustment factor schemes that reward students for academic performance and extra-curricular achievements. These schemes also take into account a range of personal and educational disadvantages that may have affected your studies. 

HSC Plus 
This scheme rewards students who perform well in Year 12 subjects that are relevant to their preferred UNSW degree. You may be awarded up to five points. 

Elite Athletes, Performers and Leaders (EAPL) 
This program recognises achievements in the areas of sport, academia, leadership and music at an elite level. You may be eligible for up to five points.

Educational Access Scheme (EAS)
Factors such as illness, financial hardship, language difficulties or attending a particular school can mean you don't always get the best possible marks in Years 11 and 12. If one of these situations applies to you, submit an application for the Educational Access Scheme (EAS) via UAC. Eligible students can receive between 1 and 10 points towards their chosen UNSW degree.

Admission pathways


Your ATAR is not the only measure of your potential to succeed, which is why we offer a range of pathways into university. Explore your options below and get in touch with our future student advisors to discuss your path to UNSW. 

Gateway Admission Pathway
This scheme is open to students in Years 11 and 12 who attend Gateway schools. It significantly adjusts the ATAR requirements for your preferred UNSW degree and provides you with an early conditional offer to UNSW. 

Entry programs for Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
We offer entry programs for Indigenous Australians, including the Indigenous Preparatory Programs and the Indigenous Admission Scheme (IAS). The entry pathway program you apply for will depend on the degree you want to study. 

English language requirements

 

You may be asked to provide evidence of your English proficiency to study at UNSW depending on your educational background and citizenship. English language skills are vitally important for coping with lectures, tutorials, assignments and examinations - this is why UNSW requires a minimum English language competency for enrolment.

If you’re completing an Australian Year 12 qualification (e.g. NSW HSC or equivalent), you do not need to provide anything extra to prove your proficiency. Your qualification will be used as evidence of your English proficiency.

If you do need to provide evidence of your English proficiency, this will be indicated in your application. You can prove this by providing evidence that you meet one or more of the following criteria:

UNSW Global offers courses and programs designed to help you reach the English language level required for entry into your chosen degree. Different options are available depending on your current English language level. Learn more.

International direct entry

We do not accept secondary qualifications from this country. We may accept tertiary study results, please contact us for more information.

Please contact us for direct entry requirements.

Admission pathways


UNSW Global has university pathway programs that provide seamless transition to UNSW Sydney so you can achieve your academic and career goals. Learn more.

English language requirements


You may be asked to provide evidence of your English proficiency to study at UNSW depending on your educational background and citizenship. English language skills are vitally important for coping with lectures, tutorials, assignments and examinations - this is why UNSW requires a minimum English language competency for enrolment.

If English is not your first language, you’ll need to provide proof of your English proficiency before you can be given an offer to study at UNSW. You can do this by providing evidence that you meet one or more of the following criteria:

UNSW Global offers courses and programs designed to help you reach the English language level required for entry into your chosen degree. Different options are available depending on your current English language level. Learn more.

Check the specific English language requirements for this program

Program structure

The Bachelor of City Planning (Honours) is a 4-year program consisting of 28 courses, a Practice Year and completion of a research thesis in the final year.

The program includes:

  • 15 core courses
  • 3 Prescribed elective courses (choose from within City Planning)
  • 2 Interdisciplinary courses (BEIL)
  • 2 General education courses (choose from other schools)
  • Practice Year includes 5 practice courses completed during 1 year of practical experience
  • Plan Making Studio course
  • Thesis

Full program structure

Each university year at UNSW has three terms and an optional summer study period. You can study full-time or part-time.

Some courses need to be studied in your first and second year, so you’re prepared for courses that can only be studied in later years. Depending on how you plan your study load, you can fit two or three courses into a term and one course in a summer term.

Depending on how you plan your study load, you can fit two or three courses into a term and one course in a summer term.

Below is an example of what you could study in a standard four-year-year, full-time study plan.

First year

  • 6 Core courses
  • 2 Electives

Second year

  • 8 Core courses

Third year (Practice Year)

  • 5 Practice courses
  • 3 Electives

During your Practice Year, you'll apply your skills and knowledge in city planning to real-world work experience and bring insights from this experience back into the classroom.  Our students undertake their work experience in diverse public and private sector organisations, including state government, local authorities, urban consultancies, development companies, private practice and NGOs.

Fourth year (Honours)

  • 1 Research core course
  • 1 Studio core course
  • 2 Electives
  • 1 Thesis

In your final year, you’ll deepen your knowledge through a self-directed research project. You’ll graduate with strong research skills developed through completion of a thesis that will set you apart as you kick-start your career.

See our sample degree structure or for further  information on coursework, course listing, descriptions and timetables please see the UNSW Online Handbook.

Future careers

As a City Planner you’ll build a career that addresses local and global challenges facing our natural and built environments. You’ll graduate with the confidence, knowledge and career-ready skills to turn creativity and critical thinking into real world solutions. You’ll be prepared to:

  • Promote environmental sustainability, address climate change and built resilient cities and communities
  • Manage population growth and plan for new homes, jobs and services
  • Work with communities and stakeholders in fostering fair, equitable and inclusive neighbourhoods
  • Work with the development sector to deliver feasible, people-focused outcomes
  • Work with architects, urban designers and landscape architects to deliver well-designed, healthy and inspiring places  
  • Address major transport, infrastructure building and urban renewal provisions
  • Protect our natural and heritage built environments   

Potential careers

  • Strategic Planner
  • Local Government Planner
  • Social and Community Planner
  • Environmental Planner
  • Urban Consultant
  • Urban Policy Analyst
  • Urban Policy Officer
  • Transport Planning
  • Urban Designer
  • Heritage Officer
  • Property Developer

Accreditation

Planning Institute of Australia, Graduates are eligible for Corporate Membership of the Planning Institute of Australia (PIA), subject to practical experience.

Double degrees

You can combine the Bachelor of City Planning with Law to deepen your expertise and expand your career options. 

How to apply

Applications for undergraduate study from domestic students (Australian citizens, Australian permanent residents, Australian permanent humanitarian visa holders and New Zealand citizens) are processed by the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC).

Visit the Apply section of the UAC website and you can nominate up to five degrees in order of preference, with the first being your most desired degree and university.

On-time applications for admission usually close at the end of September each year for Term 1 admission. Late applications can be submitted, but a late fee will apply. For study starting in Term 1, the majority of offers are made in December and January. Visit the UAC website for key dates for admission outside of Term 1.

Ready to start your application?

For most international students, applications are submitted via our Apply Online service. We encourage you to submit your completed application as early as possible to ensure it will be processed in time for your preferred term.

Some high-demand programs with limited places, may have an earlier application deadline or may have an earlier commencement date. For more information visit our international applicant information page.

*If you are an international student studying an Australian qualification, go to the Universities Admission Centre (UAC) for application and UAC key dates. Note: If you are under 18 years of age, you need to make special arrangements. Read more.

Ready to start your application?

Fees & Scholarships

2022 Indicative First Year Full Fee
$8,160*

Commonwealth Supported Place: Student Contribution Band 2

*The student contribution for a Commonwealth Supported Place is an indication only of the amount payable in Year 1 based on a standard full-time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). The actual student contribution you will be liable for depends on your individual program of study and the calendar year in which you enrol. Actual fees are calculated upon enrolment. Student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the university and may increase each year during your studies (subject to caps determined by the Australian Government), effective at the start of each calendar year.

The indicative fees listed here are based on an estimated average and are for tuition only - other fees and charges are not included.

2022 Indicative First Year Fee
$42,820*
2022 Indicative Fee to Complete Degree
$177,640*

*Fees are subject to annual review by the University and may increase annually, with the new fees effective from the start of each calendar year. The indicative fees listed here are based on an estimated average and are for tuition only other fees and charges are not included. The amount you pay will vary depending on the calendar year to enrol, the courses you select and whether your study load is more or less than 1 Equivalent Full Time Student Load (8 courses per year).

Indicative fees are a guide for comparison only based on current conditions and available data. You should not rely on indicative fees. More information on fees can be found at the UNSW fees website.

Indicative fees to complete the program have been calculated based on a percentage increase for every year of the program. Fee increases are assessed annually and may exceed the indicative figures listed below.

Indicative fees to complete the program include tuition plus an estimate of study-related costs of approximately $1,000 per year. To find out more about other costs, visit UNSW International.

Scholarships


At UNSW, we award over $83 million in scholarships each year. We pride ourselves on rewarding excellence and making university accessible to students from all walks of life. Whether you’re a domestic or international student, our range of scholarships, prizes and awards can support your journey.


  • Top 50
    Worldwide

    QS World University Rankings, 2022.

  • Most
    Employable Graduates

    AFR Top 100 Future leaders Award.

  • Leading
    Innovation

    #1 Australian uni attended by start-up founders.

The student community collectively inspire and encourage my individual career goals.
ADA alumni Shirelle Altona

Shirelle Altona

Current Student

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