City and Regional Planning MS


About the Program

The MS in City and Regional Planning is the terminal degree for the planning profession. The primary purpose of the program is to develop skilled practitioners for dynamic career opportunities in the government, nonprofit and private sectors. The program’s areas of strength are in sustainability, environmental planning and community engagement. The program provides a broad-based understanding and awareness of the physical and economic aspects of planning, sensitivity to the social and environmental impact of planning decisions, and a knowledge of governmental structures as they apply to planning.

Time Limit for Degree Completion: 5 years

Campus Location: Main

Full-Time/Part-Time Status: The degree program is designed for full-time study, allowing students to complete the program in two years. Students may elect, however, to complete the program on a part-time basis.

Affiliation(s): The Department of Architecture and Environmental Design is a member of the American Planning Association (APA) and Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP).

Study Abroad: The department has a formal agreement with Beijing Forestry University, where study abroad is possible.

Accreditation: The MS program in City and Regional Planning is accredited by the Planning Accreditation Board (PAB). The PAB accredits university programs in North America leading to bachelor’s and master’s degrees in planning. The accreditation process is based on standards approved by the PAB with input from the public and our sponsoring organizations: the American Planning Association (APA); the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), which is the professional planners’ institute within the American Planning Association; and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP).

Areas of Specialization: Two optional concentrations are available to students in the MS in City and Regional Planning degree program:

  • Sustainable Community Planning

  • Transportation Planning

Graduate certificates in Sustainable Community Planning and Transportation Planning are available to non-matriculated students and students in other Temple University graduate programs, with the approval of their graduate advisor. For more information, see the certificate descriptions on the Department of Architecture and Environmental Design website.

Job Prospects: A graduate degree in city planning is recognized by the profession as the terminal degree. The majority of students graduating from the program find employment in the greater Philadelphia region, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and beyond. The majority of the program’s graduates have found employment in planning or a related field within one year of graduation. Private, public and nonprofit employment opportunities in planning are strong for graduate degree holders based on current need and projected growth over the next decade.

Licensure/Certification: The American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) provides nationwide, independent verification of planners’ qualifications. While not required to practice, AICP certification ensures academic qualifications, work experience, mastery of essential skills, and commitment to a professional code of ethics. As a Planning Accreditation Board (PAB) accredited program, Temple University’s Master of Science in City and Regional Planning provides the fastest path to AICP certification, with two years' professional planning experience required. To be eligible for the certification exam, graduates must also be a current member of the American Planning Association (APA) and be engaged in professional planning, either currently or in the past, as defined by AICP. For more information, visit

New Jersey offers its own license for professional planners. This is in addition to, not instead of, the national AICP. Graduates who plan on working in New Jersey can opt to sit for the Professional Planner (PP) exam. Details can be found at

Non-Matriculated Student Policy: Non-matriculated students are permitted to take a maximum of 9 graduate credits at Temple University prior to applying to the program. Please contact the Department of Architecture and Environmental Design for details.

Financing Opportunities: The Department of Architecture and Environmental Design has a limited number of scholarships for graduate students. Students should also check the Tyler School of Art and Architecture and Student Financial Services websites for financial aid opportunities. Students should complete a FAFSA application to determine eligibility for student financial aid, work-study employment within the department, or other on-campus jobs.

Admission Requirements and Deadlines

Application Deadline:

Fall: January 6
Spring: November 1

Applications are reviewed as they are received up through the priority deadline. Applications received after these dates may be considered for admission. See the Tyler School of Art and Architecture website for the most up-to-date application information.

APPLY ONLINE to this graduate program.

Letters of Reference:
Number Required: 3

From Whom: Letters of recommendation should be obtained from college/university faculty members, planning professionals and others in a position to evaluate the applicant's past work and/or ability to do graduate work. The letters should be submitted with the application at, along with the statement of goals.

Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline: All applicants must hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, but the bachelor's degree need not be in a related field of study. Official transcripts from all universities/colleges attended, whether or not a degree was awarded, must be sent to the Tyler School of Art and Architecture, Graduate Admissions Office, 2001 N. 13th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19122-6016.

Statement of Goals: In approximately 500 to 1,000 words, share your reason for pursuing a degree in City and Regional Planning, your interest in Temple's program in particular, and your future career goals.

Standardized Test Scores:
GRE/GMAT: Due to testing limitations related to COVID-19, the Tyler School of Art and Architecture is temporarily waiving submission of GRE scores for applicants to the MS in City and Regional Planning degree program. Applicants may still voluntarily submit GRE test scores, but scores will only be used as a supplement to required application materials. All other admission requirements, including submission of scores for a standardized test of English, if applicable, still need to be met. In some circumstances, the Graduate Admissions Committee may request additional supplemental application materials or an interview as part of the admissions process.

Applicants who earned their baccalaureate degree from an institution where the language of instruction was other than English, with the exception of those who subsequently earned a master’s degree at a U.S. institution, must report scores for a standardized test of English that meet these minimums:

  • TOEFL iBT: 79
  • IELTS Academic: 6.5
  • PTE Academic: 53

Resume: Current resume required.

Transfer Credit: The City and Regional Planning Admissions Committee recommends the awarding of transfer credits on a case-by-case basis as applications are reviewed. The student may not receive transfer credit for coursework taken as part of any other awarded graduate degree. The maximum number of credits a student may transfer is 9.

Program Requirements

General Program Requirements:
Number of Credits Required to Earn the Degree: 45

Required Courses:

Core Courses
CTRP 5014Planning Politics and Administration3
CTRP 5413Planning Communications3
CTRP 5513Planning Analysis3
CTRP 5524Spatial Analysis Techniques/Geographic Information Systems 13
CTRP 8013Planning History and Theory3
CTRP 8016Planning Law3
CTRP 8213Environmental Planning3
Electives 218
Capstone Course
CTRP 9889Planning Studio6
Total Credit Hours45

Students may undertake one of two transcripted optional concentrations in fulfilling the coursework requirements for the MS degree:

Sustainable Community Planning

Core Concentration Courses
CTRP 5256Sustainable Community Design and Development3
CTRP 8276Regional Development3
Select two from the following: 16
Ecological Planning and Development
Neighborhoods, Cities, and Regions
Sustainability in Suburban Communities
Environmental Policy
Sustainable Business Practices
Environmental Infrastructure Planning and Management
Collaborative Planning
Introduction to Emergency Management Planning
Total Credit Hours12

Transportation Planning

Core Concentration Course
CTRP 8655Transportation Planning3
Select three from the following: 19
Regional Development
Integrated Transportation and Land-Use Planning: Context-Sensitive Design Solutions
Non-motorized Transportation Planning
Travel Demand Modeling
Total Credit Hours12

Internship: A supervised 180-hour internship is required. The internship emphasizes the acquisition and application of practical skills in planning. Placements are made at public agencies, nonprofit institutions and private firms, with designated onsite and Planning and Community Development faculty supervisors. Internships may require interim reports and must culminate in a written report regarding the experience. Students have the option of registering for CTRP 9885 Internship in Planning for 3 elective credits. If the student has relevant professional experience, the internship requirement is waived and CTRP 9885 may not be taken for credit toward the degree.

Culminating Events:
Capstone Course:
All students must complete CTRP 9889 Planning Studio (6 credits), which involves undertaking a planning project in cooperation with a local or regional client. Students synthesize the knowledge gained from previous courses in the development of an integrated approach that is appropriate to their project.

Thesis Option:
The master's thesis is substantial in length and follows a knowledge-enhancement model, based on planning theory, methodology and history. Requirements are specified in the Graduate School’s Dissertation and Thesis Handbook, found at Up to 6 elective credits may be earned for taking CTRP 9995 Thesis in Planning.

The student's Master's Committee is responsible for evaluating the thesis and its defense. No thesis should go to defense unless it is ready for public scrutiny. The committee evaluates the student's ability to express in writing and orally their research question, methodological approach, primary findings and implications. Committee members vote to pass or fail the thesis upon conclusion of the public defense. If the student must make revisions, those changes must be approved as arranged by the Master's Committee.


Program Web Address:

Department Information:

Tyler School of Art and Architecture

Graduate Admissions Office

2001 N. 13th Street

Philadelphia, PA 19122-6016


Mailing Address for Official Transcripts:

Tyler School of Art and Architecture

Graduate Admissions Office

2001 N. 13th Street

Philadelphia, PA 19122-6016

Submission Address for All Other Application Materials:

Department Contacts:

Graduate Admissions Office:

Tyler School of Art and Architecture


Planning and Community Development Program Head:

Jeffrey P. Doshna, PhD, AICP

213 Architecture Building


Department Chairperson:

Sasha W. Eisenman

201 Dixon Hall