Master of Urban and Regional Planning (MURP)
The MURP is a two-year professional degree program designed for those interested in working as professional planners. The core curriculum focuses on the history and theory of planning as a field, plan implementation, analytical methods (including Geographic Information Systems [GIS]), and the dynamics of metropolitan development.
MURP students have the opportunity to develop a customized course plan that prepares them for careers within the planning profession. The faculty have developed a series of advising pathways to help current and prospective MURP students learn about career pathways within planning, the skills and knowledge that are important for those pathways, and the courses that help students prepare for those careers.
For the last two quarters of the program, students work in groups on community-based, client-focused workshop projects. This two-term (winter and spring) sequence provides students with the opportunity to form teams to work on projects for community clients, and to produce a professional product by the end of the spring term. Check out examples of past workshop projects.
Experiential learning is an integral component of the program. The program requires 400 hours of internship experience. Internships in the Portland region are plentiful and varied, and include opportunities such as working with Metro's state-of-the-art transportation planning model, with a non-profit community development corporation to revitalize neighborhoods, or with a bi-state agency to implement the Columbia Gorge National Scenic Area Act.
Two dual degree programs are complementary with the MURP program: Public Health and Civil and Environment Engineering (with a transportation focus). With very careful planning, students may be able to complete both degrees in three years.
MURP Advising Pathways
MURP students have the opportunity to develop a customized course plan with their 29 elective credits that reflects their academic and professional interests within planning. To support this change, the faculty have developed a set of advising pathways to help students understand the range of career paths within planning, the skills and knowledge that are important for those careers, and how those skills and knowledge map onto courses offered through TSUSP and elsewhere at PSU.
MURP students work directly with their faculty advisor to develop and review their elective coursework plan. Students are strongly encouraged to consult the pathway materials but do not need to select a specific one, and may “mix and match” if they choose. The only requirements are that the faculty advisor annually review and approve the student’s coursework plan, as reflected on their Degree Planning Form, and that at least half of the student’s elective credits come from courses offered by TSUSP.
The following Advising Pathways have been developed:
- Community Development
- Economic Development
- Food Systems
- Gerontology/Age-friendly Cities
- Land Use
Additional pathways are under development, and existing pathways will be revised and updated regularly to reflect new faculty and course offerings.
MURP Strategic Plan
In March 2020 the Toulan School faculty, through the MURP Executive Committee, adopted a strategic plan for the MURP program to guide its efforts over the next 4-5 years.
Public Information & Measures of Student Achievement
As prescribed by the Planning Accreditation Board (Standard 7D), TSUSP provides public information on its website about student achievement, program, cost, admissions, graduation and retention rates and trends, AICP certification and employment outcomes for the MURP program.