MS Urban Planning FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Check out our frequently asked questions for answers to the most common questions about the Master of Science in Urban Planning, or contact us with any other questions.

Academics

Yes, it is possible to attend on a part-time basis. You will work closely with the graduate coordinator and your faculty advisor to develop a specific part-time schedule.

Students are strongly encouraged to start the program in the fall, but some students do join the program in January.

Yes, although you do not need to choose a concentration when you first enter the program. You will start working on major and minor concentration courses during your second semester. You may choose from three predefined concentration areas.

Students will be provided a list of approved electives. If a student wishes to take an elective outside of CAPLA, it must be approved by the faculty advisor. View all MS Urban Planning courses.

Yes, there is an internship requirement that must be completed in order to graduate. This is done in coordination with a faculty advisor, and is usually taken the summer between your first and second year in the program.

Yes, planning students may join architecture and landscape architecture students for summer study abroad opportunities and guided international studies and research projects. Previous international trips have included destinations such as South Africa; Orvieto, Italy; Copenhagen, Denmark; Prague, Czech Republic; Oman, Jordan; and Panama.

The school and our Graduate Planning Society student organization have close ties to planning professionals in the region. The Friends of Planning is a group of practicing planners who work closely with the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning to create meaningful, professional experiences for students, including internships. In addition, the college hosts a career fair which is attended by local and national employers. At the university level, opportunities exist to take workshops in resume creation, professional speaking and interviewing skills.

Many employers post open positions to Handshake, the University of Arizona’s job board and career development platform. The School of Landscape Architecture and Planning also receives regular notifications from employers looking to hire planning graduates and these notices are distributed to students. The Friends of Planning group is another good place to make employment connections. The American Planning Association website lists many planning jobs available around the country, as well.

Admissions

You can apply at www.grad.arizona.edu. Click on “Apply now”. Review the application process and additional information on our Admissions & Cost page first.

Students applying to the program must meet University of Arizona Graduate College admissions standards.

  • Applicants must hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited United States college or university, or equivalent in a non-US institution of higher learning. The undergraduate degree can be in any field of study. A cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 in the last 90 graded quarter credit hours or last 60 graded semester credit hours is required.
  • Applicants who do not meet the required 3.0 GPA can apply as Graduate Non-Degree Seeking. After completion of 12 consecutive semester units of 500 level courses, and a 3.0 GPA or higher, applicants can apply as graduate degree seeking using their graduate GPA.
  • Those applicants who possess a bachelor's degree in landscape architecture or a closely related professional field may apply for advanced standing.
  • International students must demonstrate English language proficiency and submit scores from the TOEFL exam. 

FALL 2021
November 30:
 Priority Admissions Deadline
January 10: Round 2
February 4: Round 3
March 7: Round 4 (Deadline for Graduate Assistantship Consideration and International Students without Visa)
April 4: Round 5
May 15: Final Deadline (Domestic/International with Visa, WRGP-Eligible)

Contact Emilio Romero, graduate student services coordinator, at eromero@arizona.edu or 520-621-9819.

Yes, international students must also provide:

Financial Guarantee: Applicants must submit a Financial Guarantee form certifying they have sufficient U.S. funds for their first year of education. If family members are to accompany the student, additional funds are required. If the student receives a fellowship or an assistantship, the amount of the award will constitute part of the financial guarantee.

Proof of English Language Proficiency: TOEFL scores are required of applicants who speak English as a second language unless they have completed at least two years of full time academic study in the United States, English-speaking Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand or other official English speaking countries at an accredited institution, culminating in the receipt of a bachelors or graduate degree that is awarded within two years of the term of enrollment. Students must have 48 graded semester hours of upper division, undergraduate work or 30 graded semester hours of graduate work. If the student has been residing outside the English speaking country for more than 2 years since completing studies and earning a degree, he or she will be required to submit current TOEFL or IELTS scores as part of the admissions process. TOEFL results are valid for two years only. Only scores of 79 or greater on the TOEFL and 7 or greater on the ILETS are acceptable. The Center for English as a Second Language (CESL) at The University of Arizona offers full-time English-language training for students who have not attained an acceptable score on their TOEFL. 

Cost to Attend and Financial Aid

In-state and WRGP tuition and fees:
$11,938 tuition + $3,000 program fees + $1,334 university fees
Out-of-state tuition and fees:
$32,125 + $3,000 program fees + $1,334 university fees
Subject to change. Learn more about WRGP pricing for out-of-state students from the West.

To see current tuition and fees, please view the Estimated Cost of a UA Education.

Students are responsible for paying 75 percent of both program fees.

Financial aid is available to qualified students based on the program, merit and financial need. Many of our students receive some form of financial aid excluding loans.

  • The program provides financial support to offset tuition for its students in the form of: Graduate Tuition Waivers; Fellowship Funds; Program Fee Set Aside Funds; Graduate Teaching and Research Assistantships; Program level scholarships; Graduate Access Fellowships; UA Peace Corps Coverdell Fellowships eligible for returning Peace Corps Volunteers; Qualified Tuition Reduction (QTR) Waivers for UA employees and affiliates; and student travel support offered by the program.
  • The University of Arizona and the College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture have an array of scholarships available to qualified students. Awards are based on need, merit, program, class year, and/or other specifications. Students can apply for additional scholarships through Scholarship Universe. Admitted students will be notified of the opportunity to apply through Scholarship Universe.
  • Applicants are eligible to apply for federal financial aid through Free Application Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Please visit the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid for more information.

Miscellaneous

There are computers available in the studio and computer lab, however, they are often used for courses. It is strongly recommended that you bring your own laptop computer to campus. Personal computers must meet specific computer requirements in order to run the necessary software.

Please contact the Graduate Coordinator, Emilio Romero, at eromero@arizona.edu, or at 520-621-9819. He can arrange a tour of our facilities and set up meetings with faculty and students in the planning program. You can also take a virtual tour of CAPLA, or experience the University of Arizona campus through a Virtual Visit.

Tucson is a welcoming and diverse community surrounded by five majestic mountain ranges. The Tucson basin boasts a rich cultural heritage, a UNESCO World City of Gastronomy designation, and offers nationally renowned events such as the Tucson Gem and Mineral ShowAll Souls Procession/Day of the Dead, and the Tour de Tucson bike race. The SunLink Streetcar connects the University of Arizona campus to Fourth Avenue, Tucson’s downtown, and the Westside Mercado District. Southern Arizona, with 350 days of sunshine each year, is known for its abundant outdoor opportunities including hiking, biking, birding, and rock climbing. 

Ready to shape a more resilient future?

Learn more about the Master of Science in Urban Planning by contacting Emilio Romero, graduate services coordinator, or review the admissions process and begin your application now:

Start Your Application