Program Overview

The Master of Urban Planning balances theory, hands-on skills development, planning specializations, and studio collaboration to equip students for success as professional urban planners. Through rigorous coursework and a studio capstone project, students become advocates for diverse neighborhoods, cities, and regions. Elective concentrations, made possible by our exciting course offerings, give students specializations that today’s employers highly value. A mix of full-time faculty and highly qualified part-time instructors teach our classes, leveraging New York’s extensive planning networks.

Our successful graduates work as planners in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, with a high percentage in full-time planning roles. Please click here to see a selected list of current alumni positions, and click here to read extended features on recent alumni. Our students help organize social and educational events for their colleagues at the graduate student association.  Many planning students also contribute to the student-run Urban Review. Many of our students secure highly competitive internships in agencies like the MTA, the NYC Department of Transportation, and the NYC Department of City Planning.

Each student works closely with a full-time faculty advisor to design a two-year curriculum plan and is encouraged to define and refine academic and professional objectives. With permission from the Program Director, students may also take in-person courses at other CUNY campuses to help meet their educational and professional goals. The department regularly offers free tutoring to students for their GIS and urban data courses.

The MUP program is accredited by the Planning Accreditation Board (PAB). Following PAB guidelines regarding access to outcomes-related information, click here for a quick snapshot of the 2022-2023 public information regarding our MUP program. In 2024, the PAB reaccredited the MUP program for the maximum seven-year term, highlighting “many areas of excellence . . . a program with a long history and distinctive focus on advocacy planning; highly qualified faculty actively engaged in the community and helpful to students throughout their careers; and notable efforts in creating a climate of inclusiveness.”

We offer students a high-quality education at impressively affordable tuition rates. Hunter is known for affordable excellence.

New Paris Exchange! The Hunter College Department of Urban Policy and Planning will send its first cohort of graduate students to Paris in 2024 as part of an exchange program with France’s leading urbanism school, the École d’Urbanisme de Paris. Up to four students may go in the fall semester, and the program is in English. All courses will count toward program electives; students pay standard (and low) Hunter tuition.

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Program Director: Nicholas Dagen Bloom, PhD

Curriculum/Course Requirements:

The Master of Urban Planning requires 54 credits of graduate study, 39 of which must be taken within the Urban Policy & Planning department. With the department’s approval, 15 credits may be elected from other graduate programs. The credit requirements are broken down and described in greater detail below.

The MUP Degree Requirements Worksheet is available as a PDF.

  • Core Courses (21 Credits)
  • Areas of Concentration (12 Credits)
  • Planning Studio (6 Credits)
  • Internship (3 Credits)
  • Unrestricted Electives (12 Credits)

Core Courses (21 Credits)

Theories and Process of Urban Planning (6 Credits)

Urban Structures (6 Credits)

Planning Methods and Information Management (9 Credits)

and choose two courses from:

*Formerly URBP 787.1Y

Planning Studio (6 Credits)

To solidify knowledge and skills gained in the core curriculum and other courses, students must participate in a 6-credit planning studio. This requirement is satisfied by the completion of URBP 737 (6 credits) or URBP 738 (Planning Studio I, 3 credits) and URBP 739 (Planning Studio II, 3 credits), which are taken consecutively. Ordinarily, students take the Planning Studio in their second year of study or after completing at least 27 credits. Please visit our studio page for final reports from recent studio classes.

Internship (3 Credits)

Each student must complete one 3-credit internship. As interns, students may work for city, suburban, or regional planning agencies, neighborhood development groups, banks, municipal housing or budgeting units, planning journals, or other groups approved by the department. For many students, field experiences have led to full-time employment after graduation. Click here for the syllabus that accompanies the internship.

Unrestricted Electives (12 Credits)

Students may pursue up to 12 credits of unrestricted electives outside the department. Unrestricted electives must be urban-planning-related. Students have opportunities to fulfill electives by studying abroad, including an exchange program with The Bartlett School of Planning in London, UK. Students should consult with their advisor if they plan to take courses outside the department to be sure they qualify.

Syllabi from selected electives:

Advanced Geospatial Methods for Environmental Planning
Cities and Health
Community Planning in New York City
Designing Resilient Cities
Diversity and the City
Economics of Real Estate Development
Environmental Impact Review
Environmental Justice
Governing the City
Graphic Communication
Green Infrastructure and the Waterfront
Introduction to Housing
Introduction to Transportation Planning
Introduction to Urban Design
Land Use Law
Leading in the US Nonprofit Sector
Placemaking: Introduction to Place Design and Management
Planning for Economic Development
Popular Participation in Planning and Development
Public Transit Planning
Resilience and Infrastructure Planning in New York City
Sustainable Environments
Site Planning Workshop
Transportation Policy and Advocacy
U.S. Immigration and Immigration Policies

Areas of Concentration (12 Credits)

The MUP graduate program offers the following areas of concentration:

  • Community Planning and Advocacy
  • Sustainability and the Environment
  • Transportation and Infrastructure
  • Housing and the Built Environment (including Urban Design and Historic Preservation)
  • Economic Development
  • General Practice

Each concentration is designed to give students a working knowledge of specific foci within the planning field. To fulfill the concentration requirement, students select four elective courses related to the concentration in consultation with their advisor, from the suggested list. For more detailed information and classes that can be taken for each concentration, please see page two of the MUP Degree Requirements Worksheet. Many recent electives are linked with their syllabi on this page.

Students with special interests may create a custom concentration. In developing their programs, students may combine Hunter courses with the resources of the larger City University community or other approved institutions. Some individually tailored specializations may include Education Planning and Policy, Immigration and Global Change, and Urban Information Systems.