Many social, physical, economic, technical and political issues in society cry out for definition and resolution. Among these are:

  • The decline in central cities;
  • The deterioration of neighborhoods;
  • Inefficient and inequitable taxing and regulatory policies;
  • Congestion and other problems of accessibility;
  • The impact of growth and change;
  • An erosion of natural resources; and
  • Inefficient or absent human services.

Urban and Regional Planning is one of society's means for addressing these problems in a creative, positive manner. Planning is a problem-solving profession that is concerned with the forces that influence the quality of life in the neighborhood, city, region, state, nation, and the world. Thus, planning provides a unique occupational avenue for those who desire a role in shaping a better future.

The goal of EWU's Urban and Regional Planning program is to train competent professionals for careers in planning. To achieve this goal, the department stresses the acquisition of practical, analytical and organizational skills designed to aid the student in analyzing problems and organizing community activities to help solve problems.

The combination of classroom instruction and applied planning field projects develops professional competence and ensures that each student has the requisite abilities to function within the profession after leaving the program. The department takes particular pride in having the only accredited undergraduate planning degree in the Northwest and one of only 16 in the nation.

What are the degree options?

The Department of Planning and Public Administration offers Master of Urban and Regional Planning

What can I do with my degree?

The long-range job outlook for urban and regional planners is good. There is an expanding need for planners in the private sector including consulting firms, land development companies and large corporations involved in land management and location analysis.

Planners are also found in non-profit organizations involved in community problem-solving. These positions complement more traditional jobs in the public sector including those dealing with comprehensive planning, land use regulation, and transportation systems management.

The Department takes an active role in placing students and is proud of its continuing success in finding positions for its graduates. Agencies and organizations throughout the Pacific Northwest compliment the program for producing graduates who need little additional training to assume their employment responsibilities.

Admission Requirements

General Admissions Information for Master in Urban and Regional Planning

Admission requirements of the MURP program include those required by the graduate school as well as the following:

  • Two letters of recommendation submitted to the planning graduate advisor of the Department of Planning and Public Administration. Both letters should be from instructors familiar with the applicant's undergraduate or, where applicable, graduate academic record. In the event the applicant has professional planning experience, letters may come from a supervisor or person familiar with planning work of the applicant.
  • All applicants shall also submit a personal letter of intent explaining why they wish to study planning and outlining their educational and career goals.
  • All applicants for the program must have completed a class in statistics prior to entry into the program or complete a course while in the program. In the latter case, the credits for the class will not be included in the 72 credits required for the degree.

What will I study?

The master of Urban and Regional Planning degree requires the completion of 72 total credits.

  • Theory/Philosophy
  • PLAN 501 Foundations of Planning (5)
  • PLAN 502 Advanced Community Development (5)
  • PLAN 508 Reflective Planning Theory (3)
  • PLAN 505 Planning Implementation and Law (5)
  • PLAN 509 Professional Planning Practice (2)
  • PLAN 503 Planning Methods I (5)
  • PLAN 504 Planning Methods II (5)
  • PLAN 506 Planning Methods III (5)
    Applied Synthesis
  • PLAN 507 Advanced Planning Studio (5)
  • PLAN 591 Research Project Preparation (1)
  • PLAN 601 Research Project (5)
  • Specialization or Generalist Electives (26 credits)

Specialization or Generalist Electives (26 credits)

Every student must either take courses in one of the specialty areas listed below or take PLAN 440, Land Use Planning and at least two of the following courses:

  • PLAN 510 Community Facilities Planning (5)
  • PLAN 570 Environmental Planning (5)
  • PLAN 551 Transportation Planning (5)
  • PLAN 460 Urban Design (3)


Students selecting a specialization must complete the core of a specialization, under advisement from their committee select the majority of their remaining electives from courses that support their area of specialization and do their research paper in the specialty area. The following list indicates the core of each specialty area.

Tribal Planning

  • PLAN 570 Environmental Planning (5)
  • PLAN 540 Land Use Planning (5)
  • PLAN 523 American Indian Planning (3)
  • PLAN 530 Contemporary American Indian Planning (3)
  • PLAN 531 Census Data and Tribal Planning (2)
  • PLAN 532 American Indian Economic Development (3)
  • PLAN 533 American Indian Law
  • PLAN 560 American Indian Planning Studio

Environmental Planning

  • PLAN 570 Environmental Planning (5)
  • PLAN 571 Environmental Impact Statements (3)
  • PLAN 435 Hazards Planning (2)
  • PLAN 540 Land Use Planning (5)
  • PLAN 542 Sustainable Communities (3)

Small Town Planning

  • PLAN 510 Community Facilities Planning (5)
  • PLAN 540 Land Use Planning (5)
  • PLAN 448 Main Street Programs (2)
  • PLAN 572 Rural and Small Town Planning (3)
  • PLAN 473 Planning in the Western U.S. (3)
  • PLAN 514 Local Economic Development Planning (3)
Program taught in:

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This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 2019
2 years
8,463 USD
8461 USD
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