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Top 5 Online Education Programs for Urban Planning: Cont...

Top 5 Online Education Programs for Urban Planning: Continuing Education

The explosion of online education in the past decade is rapidly changing the face of education. In 2006, 3.5 million students were listed as enrolled in an “online learning institution of higher education.” In 2009, it was asserted that 44% of USA post-secondary students were taking either some or all of their courses online. This

The explosion of online education in the past decade is rapidly changing the face of education. In 2006, 3.5 million students were listed as enrolled in an “online learning institution of higher education.” In 2009, it was asserted that 44% of USA post-secondary students were taking either some or all of their courses online. This figure was proposed to almost double by 2014.

Planning pedagogy has shared proliferation in this generation’s educational e-boom. While formally one is eligible for an entry-level planning job with a relevant bachelor’s degree, employment prospects are dismal without some form of further, advanced education. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment in this field to grow 16% from 2010 to 2020, and the disparity between master’s degrees and lack thereof may spell the difference in advantages seen by the job influx.

Forming a Top 5 list proved to be a somewhat delicate task, as the objectivity of each program’s proprietary is heavily offset by the subjectivity of planning ambition. I implore you to peruse each website with an imperative diligence and never praise rank over personal relevance.

Top 5 Online Education Programs for Urban Planning:

5. Nova Southeastern University - Focus: Urban Studies

4. University of Nebraska- Lincoln - Focus: Community Development

3. Kansas State University - Focus: Community Development

2. Leeds Metropolitan University - Focus: Town and Country Planning

1. University of Florida - Focus: Sustainability

Also existing is a plethora of free, non-certifiable, albeit broadly beneficial, massive open online courses (MOOCs). Here are a few notables:

In addition to master’s degrees, a planner may seek the certification of Certified Planner (CP), as distributed by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) of the American Planning Association (APA). This designation affirms a planner’s adherence to the intellectual current of the day, and may enhance employment opportunities.

How may the world benefit as access to education provides increasingly feasible routes to become an architect, landscape architect, or urban planner?

Credits: Image and data linked to sources.

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Evan Comen is an undergraduate at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill pursuing a B.S. in both Economics and Environmental Studies and a minor in Urban Studies and Planning. A philosophical outlook towards education led his career aspirat...

  • http://www.mojo.scup.org Alexandria Stankovich

    Great article, Evan! Online courses definitely make knowledge more accessible, while still providing rigor and structure, as well as a learning community.

    We are experimenting with MOOCs at the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) as our print publication “Planning” in now going digital. As this trend continues to grow I have to wonder how campus space will evolve and how we will begin to value/compare a certificate verses a degree from the same institution. The lines are blurring.

    I thought this was a good video about MOOCs:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eW3gMGqcZQc

    Former GRID Blogger,
    Alexandria

  • Evan Comen

    Thanks for the substantial addition!

    A description of recent architectural amendments to the Bronx Library Center, a branch of the New York Public Library, foreshadows possibilities for the future: “The library’s layout provides, as well, a powerful symbol of our new media landscape: at the center stands the screen of the Internet-connected computer; the printed word has been pushed to the margins.”

    SCUP’s initiatives and publications are innovative and incredibly relevant! I’ll stay tuned for the digital publication.

    Evan

  • Evan Comen

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