The required core curriculum provides students with a foundational education in Planning.
Through the selection of electives, students may pursue a generalist planning degree or identify a specific area of Planning in which to develop further expertise.
Some examples include: environmental planning, housing and community development, international development planning, land use planning and transportation. Students develop a curriculum that fits their professional aspirations and meets program requirements in consultation with the Department’s faculty members and the Graduate Coordinator. A professional report, practicum, thesis or written comprehensive examination is the capstone requirement to be successfully completed in the second year of study.
For most Planning students, the professional report is the preferred capstone requirement, because the professional report allows students to develop and hone practice-related skills. A professional report is an analysis of a real-world planning issue or process, completed in a manner that demonstrates professional judgment and competence.
Today's complex urban, social and environmental issues can best be understood by researchers who can work across disciplinary boundaries, and who understand the relationship of research to action. The Planning, Policy, and Design doctoral program at the University of California, Irvine (Ph.D. brochure) trains scholars for national and international prominence in the analysis of social problems related to the built, natural and institutional environments. Our faculty members and students combine perspectives from urban planning, public policy, and design behavior. The Planning, Policy, and Design Ph.D. is based on the department's internationally prominent research and teaching strengths, including design-behavior research, environmental policy, health promotion and policy, and urban and community development.
Students in the Ph.D. program take a common core of classes, then specialize in study related to their research interests. Students may design their own specialization or may follow the guidelines provided to specialize in Policy and/or Urban and Regional Planning. In either case, the elective courses need to be approved by the student’s faculty advisory committee.