Graduate programs

With over half of the world’s population now living in urban areas, the challenge of creating and maintaining urban places as high quality, healthy, vital places for people has never been more important. Our expectation is that recipients of the graduate degrees and certificates offered by the Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning will be in the forefront of those efforts, contributing professional leadership and new knowledge in support of this first “urban century”.

Graduate assistantships

Admission requirements




Urban Studies Ph.D.

Urban Studies—Regional Science Ph.D.

Program Rules


The Master of Urban Studies provides training for students seeking employment in public and private urban research organizations.

The M.U.S. degree requires a total of 52 credits. M.U.S. students pursue a common core of courses dealing with the analysis of urban phenomena (25 credits). Each student also defines a field area which is pursued through coursework (21 credits) and individual research leading to a thesis or research paper (6 credits). In addition, the degree provides for a specialized option in social and policy research.

Core-area requirements

The urban core-area requirements for the M.U.S. degree include the following courses:


USP 613Urban Economic and Spatial Structure


USP 614History and Theory of Urban Studies


USP 617The Sociology and Politics of Urban Life


USP 630Research Design


USP 634Data Analysis I


USP 683Qualitative Analysis


USP 697Urban Studies Seminar


The first four are normally taken in the first year, with USP 697 taken at the beginning of the second year. Students in USP 697 produce a fully developed research paper as a requirement for continuation in the program

Field-area requirements

The student selects a pattern of coursework that equips him or her for research in areas of applied interest. Field areas may focus on urban aspects of social science theory in one of the fields emphasized in the urban studies Ph.D. program or on a substantive issue of particular concern to the student. Relevant courses are available within the School of Urban Studies and Planning and in many other departments within the University. Twenty-one credits of field-area coursework are required.

Research requirements

The M.U.S. degree provides for thesis and nonthesis options. The thesis option requires registration for 6 credits of USP 503 Thesis and completion of a formal thesis. The nonthesis option requires preparation of a substantial research paper (involving registration in 6 credits of USP 501 Research) and successful completion of a written field area examination.