Master of Community and Regional Planning


Program Description

The field of planning practice (encompassing urban, community and regional planning, and related sub-specializations) has long been recognized as a professional field in Canada, as elsewhere in the world. Founded by Dr. H.P. Oberlander in 1951, the School of Community and Regional Planning (SCARP) is one of the oldest planning schools in Canada.

Its Vision is “Sustainability through the Democratization of Planning,” and in achieving that Vision, SCARP's Mission is “to advance the transition to sustainability through excellence in integrated policy and planning research, professional education and community service.”

The objective of SCARP’s new Master of Community and Regional Planning (MCRP) program is to further the Vision and Mission of the School by providing students, through cutting-edge content and innovative pedagogy, with the essential theory, skills, methods, and critical thinking and analytical tools they need to address the complex social and environmental issues of a rapidly urbanizing world. It is intensive and professionally oriented, and students emerge as well-rounded, critical, and creative agents of change.

Quick Facts

  • Degree: Master of Community and Regional Planning
  • Subject: Specialty
  • Mode of delivery: On campus
  • Registration options: Full-time
  • Specialization: Planning
  • Program Components: Coursework + Major Project/Essay required
  • Faculty: Faculty of Applied Science
  • School: School of Community and Regional Planning

The MCRP is a professional degree in Planning. It is an innovative and flexible program that anticipates and responds to rapidly changing urban, regional, and global environments.

The MCRP curriculum begins with a strong core sequence of 18 credits that is tailored to the evolving demands of the profession. Students will additionally undertake concentrated study through a sequence of courses customized for their interests and professional aspirations. In their second year, students will be required to take a studio course that integrates theories and methods covered throughout the curriculum into a single team-based project with a real or simulated client or community group.

Cumulative program requirements provide students with real world experience and prepare them for entry into a wide variety of planning jobs. The program also features an internship/work experience, and a mentoring program. The capstone to the MCRP program is a professional project; there is no thesis option.


The MCRP also includes two concentrations with separate concentration credits: The Indigenous Community Planning Concentration and the Urban Design Concentration.

Master of Arts in Planning/Master of Science in Planning (MAP/MScP)

The MAP/MScP is a thesis-based research program of study which is differentiated from SCARP’s accredited, professionally oriented MCRP and is intended to provide learning opportunities for practicing professionals who want to strengthen their research skills; those with undergraduate planning degrees from accredited programs; and students (with or without a master’s degree) interested in eventually doing doctoral research, to undertake graduate-level study leading to a non-accredited, research-based master’s degree.

Career Options

According to our most recent alumni survey (2012), 86% of SCARP masters graduates who sought employment were working in a professional planning or planning-related job within one year of graduation. Exit surveys of graduates from the last 3 years (Fall 2011 -Spring 2014) indicate that at the time of graduation, 41% of students had already accepted a planning-related job offer. Sixty per cent of currently employed respondents selected “public sector” as their place of employment. Sixteen percent chose “private sector”, 13% chose “self-employed”, and 7% selected “non-profit”. These figures reflect both the historic focus of employment in the planning profession in municipal and other public sector agencies, and emergent new trends for professional employment in the private and non-profit sectors. The MCRP degree program prepares graduates for professional practice by providing the kind of forward-looking education that graduates need to become the future leaders and innovators of the planning profession.

Last updated Dec 2018

About the School

The Faculty of Applied Science oversees administrative procedures for the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, the School of Community and Regional Planning, the School of Nursing, and a ... Read More

The Faculty of Applied Science oversees administrative procedures for the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, the School of Community and Regional Planning, the School of Nursing, and all engineering activities at the Vancouver campus and the School of Engineering at the Okanagan campus. Read less