Incoming students should register for the following required courses:


          Plan 502*    (3)   Introduction to Planning Theory and History (Sandercock) – 3 credits

          Plan 506*    (3)   The Legal Context of Planning (Young) – 3 credits

          Plan 515*    (3)   Planning Research: Qualitative Methods & Research Design (Angeles) – 3 credits

          Plan 540A*  (3)   Omnibus: Becoming a Good Sustainability Planning Practitioner (Gurstein) – 3 credits

          Plan 548E*  (1)   Research Design and Quantitative Data Collection (Stevens) – 1 credit

          Plan 548I*   (1)   Quantitative Tools for Planners (Chang) – 1 credit


All students must also take one of the following Quantitative Courses:

          Plan 548G* (1)   Introductory Quantitative Data Analysis (Stevens) – 1 credit
          - required for students without previous Quantitative Methods

          Plan 548H* (1)   Intermediate Quantitative Data Analysis
          - required for students with previous Quantitative Methods (Chang) – 1 credit


The following course is also required for students completing the Indigenous Community Planning (ICP) Specialization

          Plan 548T Indigenous Community Planning Field Studio (Cook) – 6 credits
          - required for ICP students in 2nd year


* These courses must be taken during the first year in the program


Choose and register in one of the following options by May 31, 2014 – The Research Supervisor form is due in the SCARP office by Sept 30, 2014:

          Plan 549C   (12)   Thesis             

          Plan 547C   (6)     Project – plus 6 extra credits.


  • Students must register in Plan 549C or Plan 547C in the first summer (beginning of second year) in the program and on a continuing basis throughout the remainder of the program.


REQUIRED COURSES: The distribution requirements are intended to ensure that all students have a minimum breadth in their knowledge of planning.  Reflecting on the School’s focus on Sustainability Planning and its Vision – Sustainability through the democratization of planning – all students are required to select, in consultation with their advisor, at least one course from four out of the five dimensions of planning knowledge listed below:

NOTE:  ICP Students are required to take either Plan 548F or Plan 538


      Dimension 1: Ecology, Risk and Land Use

          Plan 504     (3)     Ecological Context of Planning – Honey-Rosés

          Plan 545B   (6)     Study Abroad - Philippine Planning Studio - Angeles

          Plan 548F   (3)     Sustainability, Planning & Governance – Approaches to Whole Region Change – O’Riordan
          (required for ICP students)

          Plan 548K   (3)     Planning for Disaster- Resilient Communities – Chang                

          Plan 590A   (3)     Land Use and Environmental Policy – Stevens

          Plan 597     (3)     Planning for Water Resources – Honey-Rosés


      Dimension 2: Transportation Planning & Urban Design

          Plan 517     (3)     Theory and Methods of Urban Design – Senbel
          (required for Urban Design Students)

          Plan 579     (3)     Health & the Built Environment – Frank

          Plan 580     (3)     Introduction to Transportation Planning – Frank

          Plan 587A   (3)     Introduction to Physical Planning & Urban Design – Senbel
          (required for Urban Design Students)


      Dimension 3:  Community development and social planning

          Plan 545B   (6)     Study Abroad - Philippine Planning Studio - Angeles

          Plan 548B   (3)     Social Learning Studio – Edelson

          Plan 538     (3)     Cross-Cultural Planning – Educating the Heart – McLaren & Edelson
          (required for ICP students)

          Plan 548P   (3)     Indigenous Community Planning – Sandercock & Oleman
          (required for ICP students)

          Plan 583     (3)     Housing Policy – Gordon


      Dimension 4: Comparative International and Urban Development Planning

          Plan 503     (3)     Strategic Planning for Sustainable Community Economic Development – Trousdale
          (required for ICP students)

          Plan 542     (3)     Practical Practice: City Planning as a Craft – Beasley

          Plan 548L   (3)     Migration and Development: Planning and People Out of Place – Leaf

          Plan 548V   (3)     Vancouver Planning Laboratory – Hutton

          Plan 572     (3)     Theory & Practice of Project Planning for Development – Leaf

          Plan 573     (3)     (Planning for) An Urban World – Leaf

          Plan 592     (3)     Structural Change and the City – Hutton


      Dimension 5: Planning Processes & Analysis

          Plan 548M  (3)     Strategic Planning – McAfee

          Plan 548Q  (3)     Aboriginal Law & Governance – Reeves
          (required for ICP students) NOT OFFERED 2013-2014

          Plan 561     (3)     Urban Development Market and Financial Analysis – Wollenberg

          Plan 590B   (3)     Plan Creation, Implementation and Evaluation - Stevens

          Plan 595     (3)     Negotiation, Facilitation and Mediation: Principles & Practices – Erfan

          Plan 599     (3)     Environmental Policy Analysis – McDaniels




At the beginning of each term, students should update their initial registration, thus implementing decisions taken earlier or in consultation with their Program Advisors. These decisions must be formalized in writing using the Program Record form.  Term 1 course changes, including drops and adds, must be completed by the add/drop deadline(s) posted on the Student Service Centre.  SCARP offers several courses that have different start/ends dates.  Please check each course deadline you are registered in to ensure you drop it by the deadline.

Students who drop courses after the add/drop deadline will receive a "W" (withdrawal) on their academic record. These and other deadline dates are noted on the Student Service Centre. Students are encouraged to become familiar with such dates and deadlines. Students wishing to audit a course must submit a completed Registration/Change of Registration form (signed by the Instructor) during the first week of classes each term.

Students register for courses at the on-line Student Services Centre web site.  The Centre allows you to access and manage key information about yourself and your program of study. Some other features available to you at the web site are: change of home address, change of e-mail address, fee enquiry, grades, timetable, transcript requests and registration for graduation.The Student Service Centre also has an on-line UBC Calendar and UBC Registration Guide. Check our courses page for the most up-to-date information on courses before you register.

The School is responsible for all "PLAN" courses so there may be flexibility in adjusting class size to meet Planning student enrollments. Note that some courses have limited capacity due to space and equipment requirements.  Course availability in non-Planning courses is often limited so it is recommended that students register early. Don’t be disappointed - register early! Note that some departments (e.g., Commerce) require a letter from the student’s Program Advisor or Research Supervisor before permitting registration.

Students should register using the Student Service Centre when registration opens in August if at all possible. In the latter part of August the School examines enrollments to see if there is room in Planning courses for students from other departments. If Planning students are already registered the School can determine more accurately how many non-Planning students may enroll. Non-Planning students contribute positively to the School’s courses and to Planning students’ graduate education. At the same time, every effort is made to maintain reasonable class sizes.


Students wishing transcript information may order official UBC transcripts through the Student Service Centre. To obtain transcripts from other institutions other than UBC please reguest them from those institutions directly.

Release of personal information at the University of British Columbia is governed by the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPOP). Generally, student information may only be released with the express consent of the student. Some exceptions apply. For example if material is requested by the RCMP for investigative purposes the student's consent would not be required . For further information on the Act refer to the web address

It is essential that students check their registrations throughout each term to ensure that changes that have been properly approved by Program Advisors or Research Supervisors have been recorded accordingly on the Student Information System. Students are responsible for ensuring that their records, including grades, are accurate.

Faculty Consultation

Faculty availability is assured at times posted on their office doors or at other times by appointment. Students should book appointments with faculty in person, by telephone, or by e-mail.

Program Advisors

Each entering Master's student is assigned a Program Advisor who will help finalize a program that meets the student's objectives. The Program Advisor will also help resolve routine difficulties the student may encounter. Each student must meet with his or her Program Advisor at least once each term. While the Program Advisor serves as an academic resource, it is ultimately the student's responsibility to ensure that he or she meets all his or her own program requirements. If the Program Advisor grants an exemption, the student should ensure that a Program Record form specifying the reasons for the exemption has been placed in his or her file. If in doubt about programmatic matters, the student should feel free to ask his or her Program Advisor questions and insist on clear answers in writing.

As the student and the faculty come to know each other's interests better, the student may switch his or her Program Advisor by mutual agreement. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that the SCARP Office is informed of any change in Program Advisor or course of study. Any such changes should be submitted in writing for the student's file.

Research Supervisors

By the end of September (which is the beginning of a student's second academic year) of the Master's program he or she will be required to select a thesis or project topic and a Research Supervisor. But it is highly recommended that the student complete this before the suggested time. This information is to be recorded on a Research Supervisor Selection form (available in the SCARP office or on the SCARP website) and submitted to the SCARP office. The Research Supervisor may or may not be the same individual as a student's Program Advisor. Once selected, the Research Supervisor assumes all the responsibilities of the Program Advisor.

Research Committee Meetings

Students are required to hold Research Committee meetings a minimum of once every six months, however students and/or Research Supervisors may schedule Research Committee meetings more frequently when deemed necessary. Research Supervisors should provide a written synopsis of each Research Committee meeting held, ensuring that copies are provided for the student, for each Research Committee member, and for the student's file. A copy of the synopsis should be submitted to the SCARP office.

More information on Roles and Responsibilities is available from the Faculty of Graduate Studies and in the publication Guidelines for the Various Parties in Graduate Student Thesis Research.

Program Records

The Program Record form is used to track course additions, deletions, exemptions and changes to students' records and to evaluate students' progress in SCARP degree programs. Students entering a SCARP program are expected to consult with their Program Advisors (Master's students) during the first two weeks of their first term of study (usually early September). During the consultation process students must indicate course registrations and obtain their Program Advisor's or Research Supervisor's approval on Program Record forms. Course exemptions should also be considered at this time. Students and Program Advisors or Research Supervisors are required to sign the Program Record forms.

Throughout the course of a SCARP degree program students are expected to meet with their Program Advisors or Research Supervisors on a regular basis (Winter Session - once each term minimum; Summer Session - once minimum) and as required to update and seek approval on changes to their Program Record as they occur. Students should take the initiative to meet with their Program Advisors or Research Supervisors and to submit completed Program Record forms to the SCARP office for their student files at the beginning of each term.

Once Master's students have selected their Research Supervisors, Program Record forms may be approved by either their Research Supervisor or their Program Advisor.  Research Supervisors are responsible for submitting final grades for the Master's thesis/project.

Program Record forms are available in the SCARP office. Program Record forms are specific to the entry year (the year the student started the program). Students should be prepared for their meetings with their Program Advisors or Research Supervisors by taking the appropriate documents with them.

Masters Program Requirements

UBC Library Resources & Services


UBC Library is the second-largest research library in Canada and a high-ranking member of the Association of Research Libraries (ARL). The Art + Architecture + Planning Division of the UBC Library, in the newly renovated Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, houses the core planning collection and provides reference and instructional support via the Planning Liaison Librarian, Paula Farrar.  Due to the interdisciplinary nature of planning, collections in the Koerner Library (social sciences, government publications, data and statistics), David Lam Library (business and transportation) and Woodward Library (health and land & food systems) also support SCARP’s research and teaching.


Paula Farrar, Planning Liaison Librarian

Planning Research Guide

New Planning Resources @ UBC Library

Bookable rooms @ UBC Library

Art + Architecture + Planning, UBC Library