Urban Planning

Columbia University

24 months
58980 USD/year
58980 USD/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Master of Science in Urban Planning offered by Columbia University is a two-year accredited professional degree actively engaged in the practice of urban planning.

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The Urban Planning program offered by Columbia University connects the study of the urban built environment with grounded analysis of socioeconomic and political conditions in order to explore the tensions that arise between market forces, civil society, and the goals of planning. The program pays special attention to the potential of urban analytics and the importance of advocating for social justice through planning. In fact, it is one of the first planning programs in the United States to engage data science and visualization alongside spatial analysis to tackle today’s urban problems and inform possible planning solutions for the future.

The Master of Science in Urban Planning program is rooted in a global outlook. By studying the impact of global linked processes (for example, immigration and climate change) locally, in our cities and communities, the program aims to foster new creative planning and policy approaches that will improve processes and outcomes in cities around the world. The curriculum emphasizes real-world problems and insists that planners are central to confronting them and to improving the life of urban dwellers—and in doing so, the program positions planners as social activists. The program’s graduates work in critical and leading roles in government, private firms, nonprofit organizations, advocacy groups, multilateral institutions, and international NGOs.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • History and Theory of Planning
  • Geographic Information Systems
  • Planning Methods
  • Economics for Planners
  • Planning Law

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 24 months

Start dates & application deadlines


IELTS or TOEFL needed


30 alternative credits


On Campus

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA Your GPA, or Grade Point Average, is a number that indicates how well or how high you scored in your courses on average. Usually a GPA scales between 1.0 and 4.0, however different countries and universities can have different grading systems.
GRE admission requirements GRE® The GRE® General Test is a widely administered admissions test that measures the skills needed in today's graduate and business school programs worldwide. It contains three sections - Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing. Three scores are reported: a Verbal Reasoning score on a 130 - 170 score scale in one-point increments, a Quantitative Reasoning score on a 130 - 170 score scale in one-point increments, and an Analytical Writing score on a 0 - 6 score scale in half-point increments.
GMAT admission requirements GMAT The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a test intended to assess certain analytical, writing, quantitative, verbal, and reading skills in written English for use in admission to a graduate management program, such as an MBA. GMAT contains 4 sections - Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative and Verbal. The score has a range from 200 - 800.

English requirements

IELTS admission requirements IELTS The International English Language Test System (IELTS) tests your English-language proficiency on a scale of 1 – 9. The score refers to the combined average score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading).
TOEFL admission requirements TOEFL® IBT The TOEFL iBT® is given online through the internet at desiganated testing site. The test measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The score refers to the total score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading), each subject has a range of 0 - 30.
PTE Academic admission requirements PTE Academic PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic) is a language test that enables students to demonstrate their writing, listening, speaking, and reading skills when applying to study in English. The score refers to a total score which ranges between 10 and 90.

Other requirements

General requirements

  • Online Application
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement
  • Transcripts
  • Resumé/CV
  • All applicants whose native language is not English must submit TOEFL scores (with the exception of Introduction to Architecture applicants). At this time there is no minimum TOEFL score required for admission. We do not accept the TOEFL ITP. We do not accept the IELTS in lieu of the TOEFL.

Tuition Fee

  • International

    58980 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 58980 USD per year and a duration of 24 months.
  • National

    58980 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 58980 USD per year and a duration of 24 months.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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Urban Planning
Columbia University