Postgraduate MA

Urban Design

Course Overview

  • Institution code

  • Main location

    City Campus
  • Attendance

  • Duration

    12 Months
  • Start date

    16 Sep 2024

Urban design recognises architecture and the city as a collective form of knowledge. It brings together professionals from a range of backgrounds who share a passion for improving the design of our urban environments.

Whether you have studied urban design, architecture, interdisciplinary design or planning, this course will enable you to network with practitioners, planners, architects and landscape architects to explore the role of urban design in the city.

This course will employ a research-by-design approach to understanding national and international cities. You will study governance as a spatial design concern and will gain a deep understanding of the formation of the city within diverse political, economic, social and cultural contexts. By developing your ability to apply theory to practice, you will appreciate the complexity of creating spaces across different structural layers.

You will study the latest methods and design theories relating to urban environments, exploring the development and resolution of projects and focusing on achieving environmental sustainability. Working with landscape architecture and town planning students, you will also address briefs provided by external clients, developing your ability to work as part of a team and making a significant contribution to innovative designs.

During your advanced modules, you will have the option to choose a design-focused research project which addresses alternatives to mainstream paths and ethical concerns, or you may wish to take the research pathway looking at urban themes in connection with interdisciplinary practice, social sciences and design.

For examples of the work produced in our architecture studios, check out our Leeds School of Arts website, our End of Year Show Guide 2019, or our 2019 Research Yearbook; Volume 1, Volume 2, Volume 3, Volume 4 & Volume 5. You can also follow us on Instagram and Twitter.


The INSIDE/OUT lecture series offers historical, theoretical and critical analyses of art, architecture and design and welcomes internationally recognised practitioners to come and talk about their practice. Find out about forthcoming events on the INSIDE/OUT webpage.

This is a flexible studio-based course which will give you the opportunity to work and learn with students from a range of backgrounds, sharing experiences and building professional networks. There will be opportunities to attend activities such as the Architecture Open Lecture Series, symposia, workshops and interdisciplinary related events alongside fellow architecture and landscape students.

We have links across the industry, from local authority planning departments to urban design and landscape architecture practices. The course is also accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute and will prepare you for professional membership.

The course will be taught by a multi-disciplinary team of professionals with extensive practice-based experience. Visiting professionals will also share their experience and expertise by leading sessions

You will benefit from a range of field trips and our new multi-media studios equipped with computers, pin-up areas and dedicated desk areas. In addition, you will have access to the school 3D model shop and a 24/7 library.

Why study Urban Design at Leeds Beckett University...

  1. Course accredited by the Royal Town Planning institute
  2. Study the latest methods and design theories relating to urban environments, exploring the development and resolution of projects and focusing on achieving environmental sustainability
  3. Flexible studio-based course which will give you the opportunity to gain experience and build professional networks
  4. Leeds Beckett University is home to Project Office, our own in-house RIBA chartered architectural practice
  5. Study within Leeds School of Arts - one of the largest university arts communities in the north, with 3000 students spread across over 40 courses and 170 years of inspiring, challenging and innovative practices
  6. Take advantage of the interdisciplinary nature of the the school; gain access to a vast range of ideas, skills and facilities which will allow you to shape your practice to suit you
Accredited by

An example of MA Urban Design student work Peter Livings - Milton Keynes Site visits and Model making