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MPlan Planning with Professional Placement

Year of entry: 2021

Overview

Degree awarded
Master of Planning (MPlan)
Duration
5 years
Typical A-level offer
ABB
Typical International Baccalaureate offer

34 points overall.  6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects.

Changes to International Baccalaureate Diploma Mathematics Courses from September 2019, first examination 2021.

We are aware of the planned changes to the IB Mathematics curriculum. IB students will be able to choose from Mathematics: analysis and approaches and Mathematics: applications and interpretation from September 2019.

Applicants studying the International Baccalaureate Career Related Programme (IBCP) should contact the academic School prior to applying so that their academic profile can be considered.

Full entry requirements

How to apply
Apply through UCAS

Course overview

  • Gain an additional year of Master's level professional training, on top of the three-year BSc Planning and Real Estate degree.
  • Study a degree accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) and Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), in a world-famous city where widespread urban development is on your doorstep.
  • Experience planning, environment, urban design and real estate in action through a year-long placement.

Open days

The University holds regular open days (usually in June, September and October) where you will have the opportunity to tour the campus and find out more about our facilities and courses.

On this day, you will find out more about the School of Environment, Education and Development and our resources, and meet academic and admissions staff who will be able to answer any questions you have.

For more information, see Open days .

Fees

Tuition fees for home students commencing their studies in September 2021 will be £9,250 per annum. Tuition fees for international students will be £21,000 per annum. For general information please see the undergraduate finance pages.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Scholarships/sponsorships

We are committed to attracting and supporting the very best students from all backgrounds to study this course. You could be eligible for cash bursaries of up to £2500 to support your studies.

Find out more at Funding opportunities .

Contact details

School/Faculty
School of Environment, Education and Development
School/Faculty overview
See: The School .

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Compare this course

Entry requirements

A-level

ABB

Contextual offer

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AS-level

AS level results are not considered as part of the standard admissions process at The University of Manchester.

Subjects welcomed but not normally included as part of the standard offer

General Studies

Unit grade information

The University of Manchester welcomes the provision of unit information where available.  Like all other information provided by applicants this may be taken into consideration when assessing your application.  Unit grades will not normally form part of an offer conditions.

GCSE

Applicants must demonstrate a broad general education including acceptable levels of Literacy and Numeracy, equivalent to at least Grade C or 4 in GCSE English Language and Mathematics. GCSE English Literature will not be accepted in lieu of GCSE English Language.

International Baccalaureate

34 points overall.  6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects.

Changes to International Baccalaureate Diploma Mathematics Courses from September 2019, first examination 2021.

We are aware of the planned changes to the IB Mathematics curriculum. IB students will be able to choose from Mathematics: analysis and approaches and Mathematics: applications and interpretation from September 2019.

Applicants studying the International Baccalaureate Career Related Programme (IBCP) should contact the academic School prior to applying so that their academic profile can be considered.

Other international entry requirements

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements including English language see the  accepted entry qualifications from your country .

                          

Scottish requirements

We normally require 5 Scottish Highers for entry onto our programme: grades AABBC / ABBBB.

Applicants presenting a combination of Scottish Highers and Advanced Highers are welcomed and should contact the academic school directly to discuss their portfolio of qualifications.  

English Language and Mathematics not taken at Higher/Advanced Higher must have been achieved at SCQF level 5 (minimum National 5 grade C / Intermediate 2 grade C / Standard Grade Credit level grade 3).

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the Academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

Welsh Baccalaureate

The University welcomes and recognises the value of the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma/Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and usually requires two A Levels or equivalent to be included within this.

The minimum grade required will normally be the same as the lowest grade listed in the A Level entry requirements.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

European Baccalaureate

The University of Manchester welcomes applicants with the European Baccalaureate. Acceptable on its own or in combination with other qualifications, applications from students studying for this qualification are welcome and all applicants will be considered on an individual basis.We normally require 80%.

AQA Baccalaureate

The University recognises the benefits of the AQA Baccalaureate and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills. 

In making offers, the University will focus on the three A Levels taken within the AQA Baccalaureate. Students need to check the standard A Level requirements for their chosen course.

The units of broader study, enrichment activities and the Extended Project are considered to be valuable elements of the AQA Baccalaureate and we would therefore strongly encourage students to draw upon these experiences within their personal statement.

Foundation year

The University recognises a number of foundation programmes as suitable for entry to this undergraduate programme:

Applicants completing the INTO Manchester in partnership with The University of Manchester international foundation programme are required to achieve ABB and an EAP score of B Overall, B in writing and speaking and C in reading and listening.

Applicants completing the NCUK International Foundation year are required to achieve ABB and an EAP requirements score of B Overall, B in writing and speaking and C in reading and listening.

Applicants studying other Foundation programmes should contact the academic School to check if their qualification is recognised for entry to this programme and for specific entry requirements.

Pearson BTEC qualifications

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma

We consider the National Extended Diploma for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Extended Diploma with grades DDM. 

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma

We consider the National Diploma for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.   Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Diploma with grades DM plus an additional level 3 qualification such as an A Level at grade A.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma

We consider the National Foundation Diploma for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.   Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Foundation Diploma with grades M plus additional level 3 qualifications such as A Levels at grade BB. 

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate

We consider the National Extended Certificate for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Extended Certificate with grade D plus additional Level 3 qualifications such as A Levels at grades BB. 

The University of Manchester welcomes applications from students who have achieved legacy BTEC qualifications (pre-2016) such as the BTEC Extended Diploma, BTEC Diploma, BTEC Subsidiary Diploma, and BTEC Certificate.  The grades required are likely to be the same or vary similar to the new BTEC qualifications (first teaching 2016, awarded 2018). Please contact the Academic School for clarification.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

OCR Cambridge Technical qualifications

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Diploma (CTEC)

We consider the Technical Extended Diploma for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.   Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Extended Diploma with grades DDM.  

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Diploma (CTEC)

We consider the Technical Diploma for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Diploma with grades DM plus an additional level 3 qualification such as an A Level at grade A.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Foundation Diploma (CTEC)

We consider the Technical Foundation Diploma for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Foundation Diploma with grades MM plus additional level 3 qualifications such as A Levels at grades BB. 

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Certificate (CTEC)

We consider the Technical Extended Certificate for entry provided it is in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Extended Certificate with grade D plus additional Level 3 qualifications such as A Levels at grades BB. 

The University of Manchester welcomes applications from students who have achieved legacy CTEC qualifications (pre-2016) such as the CTEC Extended Diploma, CTEC Diploma, CTEC Subsidiary Diploma, and CTEC Certificate.  The grades required are likely to be the same or vary similar to the new CTEC qualifications (first teaching 2016, awarded 2018). Please contact the Academic School for clarification.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the Academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

Access to HE Diploma

We require a QAA-recognised Access to HE Diploma (a minimum of 60 credits overall with at least 45 at Level 3), with merit or distinction in a subject area relevant to the chosen course.

The specific course requirements are 60 credits overall with 45 at Level 3. Minimum of 30 credits with a distinction grade, with the remaining level 3 credits at merit. You must have GCSEs in English and Mathematics at grade C or 4 .

Cambridge Pre-U

We consider applicants offering Pre-U Principal Subjects, or a mix of Pre-U and A-level subjects, provided a minimum of three distinct subjects overall is taken.

Candidates are expected to achieve D3, M2, M2.

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

The University recognises the benefits of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills. Although the Extended Project will not be included in the conditions of your offer, we strongly encourage you to provide information about the EPQ in your personal statement and at interview. A number of our academic Schools may also choose to take your performance in the EPQ into account should places be available in August for applicants who narrowly miss the entry grades for their chosen course.

Core Maths

The University recognises the value of Level 3 Core Mathematics qualifications. Core Mathematics is not a compulsory element of post-16 study and as a result we will not normally include it in the conditions of any offer we make. However, if a student chooses to undertake a core mathematics qualification this may be taken into account when we consider a student's application, particularly for courses with a distinct mathematical or statistical element that does not require A Level Mathematics. Academic Schools may also choose to take a student's performance in Core Mathematics into account should places be available in August for applicants who narrowly miss the entry grades for their chosen course.

Where a course requires applicants to have at least grade 6/B or higher in GCSE Mathematics we would be likely to consider a pass in Core Mathematics at a minimum grade C or B as an alternative way to fulfil this requirement. Where an A Level in Mathematics is required then Core Mathematics will not be accepted in lieu of an A Level.

A Level and GCSE Mathematics requirements for our courses vary according to subject so we advise students to contact the academic School, who will clarify whether a student's portfolio of qualifications is acceptable for entry onto the chosen course.

Home-schooled applicants

If you are a student who has followed a non-standard educational route, e.g. you have been educated at home; your application will be considered against the standard entry criteria of the course for which you are applying. You will be required to demonstrate that you meet the specified academic entry requirements of the course. We will also require a reference from somebody who knows you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. If you are a home schooled student and would like further information or advice please contact the academic School for your chosen course who will be able to help you. 

Non-standard educational routes

Mature students are some of our most well-equipped learners, bringing skills and attributes gained from work, family and other life experiences. Students come from a whole array of backgrounds, study every kind of course, undertake full-time and part-time learning and are motivated by career intentions as well as personal interest. There is no such thing as a typical mature student at Manchester. The application process is the same as for other prospective undergraduates. If you require further clarification about the acceptability of the qualifications you hold please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to. Further information for mature students can be found here ( http://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/mature-students/ )

English language

All applicants to the University (from the UK and Overseas) are required to show evidence of English Language proficiency.  The minimum English Language requirement for this course is either:
  • IELTS 6.5 overall, 6.5 in writing, no sub-section below 6.0, or;
  • An acceptable equivalent qualification.

The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requires that every student from outside the UK and the EU must show evidence of a minimum level of English Language in order to be granted a UK visa (Tier 4 visa) to study at undergraduate or postgraduate level. This level is often referred to as the 'B2 level'.

Additionally, our individual Schools may ask for specific English Language proficiency levels that are necessary for their academic programmes. In most cases these requirements are likely to be higher than the B2 level. Further information about our English Language policy, including a list of some of the English Language qualifications we accept, can be found  here

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

How your application is considered

Academic attainment but the personal statement and potentially work experience/volunteering can be assessed in conjunction with this assessment.

Skills, knowledge, abilities, interests

Work experience or volunteering in a planning, environment, urban design or real estate would be beneficial but is not required, as opportunities are embedded within the programmes to gain work experience.

Returning to education

Return-to-learn students are those who have had a substantial period away from any formal learning. Often such learners have pursued careers or raised a family.

We understand that students come from many different backgrounds, with varying qualifications, careers and skills, but they often bring to their studies a high degree of motivation and experience. 

We recognise that standard selection measures and procedures may not enable these learners to demonstrate fully their suitability for their chosen course. 

Where appropriate, admissions officers will seek and consider alternative evidence in order to give such learners equivalent consideration. Where they deem this alternative evidence meets entry criteria fully, the learner will not be required to meet the standard academic entry requirements.

Overseas (non-UK) applicants

Students from the UK, EU and International locations can apply for the programme. Placements in Year 3 though can only be undertaken with UK based organisations.

Policy for applicants who resit their qualifications

We will consider applicants who have re-sat individual modules.

If you have re-sat your final examinations, we will consider your application but may require further information in order to make an informed academic judgement on your application.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry.

In your new application, you should demonstrate how your application has improved. We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.

If you are applying for a place for the same year of entry through UCAS Extra, you should provide additional evidence of your suitability for the course.

If you are applying through clearing, you are required to meet the clearing requirements. In both UCAS Extra and clearing the places will be subject to availability.

Course details

Course description

MPlan Master of Planning with Professional Placement is a five-year enhanced undergraduate degree, which gives you real-world experience and key employability skills, and is accredited by both the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) and the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). 

The curriculum of Years 1, 3 and 4 are the same as our BSc Planning and Real Estate, in which you will consider the issues faced by professionals in dealing with the planning, development and management of all aspects of our built and natural environments.

In the third year of study you will embark on a paid work placement with an organisation engaged with planning, environment, urban design and/or real estate to apply the conceptual, digital and communication skills you practice.

The fifth year of study is at taught master's level and provides professional training in planning.

However, if you change your mind about your future career, you can choose to exit the MPlan after four years and graduate instead with a BSc Planning and Real Estate degree.

Effective planning, development and management of our towns, cities and natural environment is crucial in an age when governments and societies all over the world are struggling to deliver sustainable development.

Understanding and engaging with the problems facing the communities and places in which we live, work and play is at the heart of what we do in the Department of Planning and Environmental Management at The University of Manchester.

The Master of Planning (MPlan) satisfies the spatial planning curricula for initial qualification with the RTPI and the RICS Planning and Development pathway.

Manchester is a great place to study planning.

It is a major UK city undergoing rapid urban change, which provides an ideal base for exploring urban development pressures and how these shape economic, social and environmental futures.

Developing an appreciation of the interaction of people, the economy, and the politics of development are central to this process and your studies in Manchester. 

The city is also ideally placed for you to learn about a wide variety of rural environments which have interesting implications, including three spectacular National Parks, areas of intensive farming and impressive coastlines.

Aims

  • Gain a framework of knowledge and understanding relating to the fields of urban and environmental planning.
  • Thrive in an intellectually challenging and stimulating learning environment.
  • Gain an appropriate range of skills for the development and delivery of the emerging spatial planning system.
  • Gain experience of applying conceptual, communication and digital skills in a real-world focussed placement.

Special features

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Portugal field trip

Accreditation

This course is accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) - meaning you'll be well set-up for a professional career in planning or real estate after you graduate.

International fieldwork

Take part in international fieldwork in Portugal or another European country during your second year, where you can put what you've learnt so far into practice.

Local fieldwork

Conduct fieldwork on a local scale, exploring the city of Manchester - and its surrounding areas - to supplement your studies and assessments.

Year in practice

Spend 12 months working within the dynamic world of planning, environment, urban design and real estate putting into practice the skills you learn on the degree helping you to gain your professional accreditation.

Teaching and learning

We combine traditional lecture-based teaching with tutorials, seminars and workshop sessions.

Practical subjects, such as Geographical Information Systems (GIS), Photoshop and SketchUp - as well as general computer skills - are taught primarily in the Humanities computer suites.

This work is accompanied by group work and the occasional lecture session, giving you an overall hands-on learning experience.

Project-based learning, incorporating studio-based design work, field research and study visits are integral to our MPlan course.

These projects provide an excellent opportunity for you to integrate your knowledge and skills, and apply them to real situations - exposing your to professional practice.

Coursework and assessment

We place strong emphasis on coursework and continuous assessment, and less than half of your total assessments throughout the course consist of formal written examinations in traditional essay formats.

Coursework takes a variety of forms - from essays and reports, to posters, oral presentations, team promotions, and project demonstrations (sometimes to practising professionals).

Your dissertation, taken in the second and third years, will draw together the different strands of the course and allow you to study a subject that really interests you.

You will work with an individual supervisor to conceive, plan, execute and write up an independent and novel piece of research.

Course content for year 1

Year 1 is a broad introduction to the fundamentals of planning.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Designing Sustainable Futures PLAN10031 20 Mandatory
Introduction to Planning and Development PLAN10041 20 Mandatory
Applied Project PLAN10092 20 Mandatory
Introduction to Real Estate PLAN10201 20 Mandatory
Introduction to Urban and Environmental Economics PLAN10352 20 Mandatory
Rural Planning PLAN10362 10 Optional
Leases & Letting PLAN10382 10 Optional

Course content for year 2

In Year 2, you will begin to specialise.

You will spend time on fieldwork in Portugal (or equivalent) and can also apply to spend one semester studying abroad at one of our exchange partners in Europe, the US, South East Asia and Australia.

Course content for year 3

In Year 3, you will undertake a 12-month paid work placement.

You will work in a planning, environment, urban design and/or real estate organisation to gain experience of applying the conceptual, digital and communication skills you have learned in real-world situations.

Placements in Year 3 can only be undertaken with UK-based organisations.

Students will research potential employers with the support of Planning staff.

To facilitate securing a placement, staff will utilise our database of existing contacts in local and national organisations. 

However, there will be an expectation that students will research potential placements themselves, with Planning staff and the University Careers Service providing additional support to obtain their chosen placement.

Information regarding placements is currently disseminated via Programme Director emails from potential placement providers.

Placements in Year 3 can only be undertaken with UK-based organisations.

In addition, you will receive guidance via a non-credit bearing set of seminars/lectures in Year 2 to outline the process of obtaining a placement.

This will be delivered in both Semester 1 and 2 with the emphasis being placed on student searches in Semester 1, and Planning guidance in Semester 2.

Course content for year 4

In Year 4, you will develop further specialism.

You will focus on career development and applying the planning concepts and skills to real-world situations.

Course content for year 5

In Year 5, you will continue developing your specialism and professional-related studies in spatial planning, environment, urban design, real estate, urban regeneration or international planning.

Scholarships and bursaries

We are committed to attracting and supporting the very best students from all backgrounds to study this course. You could be eligible for cash bursaries of up to £2500 to support your studies.

Find out more at Funding opportunities .

Facilities

You can develop your practical skills in our project studio, model-making workshop, and computer suites with specialist design and spatial analysis software.

For more information, see Facilities .

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk

Careers

Career opportunities

MPlan Master of Planning graduates are popular with employers, particularly in consultancy, where the ability to analyse and propose policies and implement strategies is vital.

After London, Manchester hosts the largest number of planning and environmental consultancies in the UK. Our graduates have gone on to successful careers in areas including:

  • planning consultancy;
  • urban design;
  • environmental management or consultancy;
  • local government;
  • nature conservation;
  • research;
  • project management;
  • engineering.

Top employers of our MPlan Master of Planning graduates include AECOM, ARUP, Wildlife Trusts, Atkins, BP, EDF Energy, Groundwork, the Environment Agency, Jacobs, Rolls-Royce, and the National Trust.

If you decide not to follow a vocational career, your wide knowledge base and transferable skills in problem-solving, strategic thinking, teamwork, creativity and communication fit what most employers are seeking.

For more information, see Careers and employability

The University has its own dedicated Careers Service that you would have full access to as a student and for two years after you graduate. At Manchester you will have access to a number of opportunities to help boost your employability .  

Accrediting organisations

  • Royal Town Planning Association (RTPI)
  • Royal Institutions of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)