Graduate Taught Programmes
The School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy offers a wide and multi-disciplinary range of taught graduate programmes suited to recent graduates and professionals alike.
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This two year programme fulfils the requirements for the second part of professional education in architecture (RIBA and RIAI Part II exempt). It equips students to deal with complex design problems in challenging contexts. Through studio projects, academic writing and practical experiment it develops professional capacities while placing equal emphasis on research and critical enquiry. It situates architecture within a broader field of disciplines and influences. The programme is led by academics and practitioners at the forefront of the discipline. It encourages students to participate in and lead the development of a vital and critical culture of architecture.
Urban environments and their buildings are at once both acutely responsible for the climate crisis, and present some of the most achievable solutions. Climate action is urgently required to mitigate their environmental impact and unearth creative solutions.
The MSc programme equips graduates and returning professionals with specialist skills to respond to the challenge of planning, designing, and actioning a sustainable built environment. The School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy (APEP) brings together four key disciplines to provide a unique graduate learning experience.
Core modules are specifically designed to enhance knowledge of Sustainable Development Goals, climate science and policy as well as skills for sustainable building and urban design. Options will allows students choose from a wide range of architecture, planning and policy based modules, as well as energy and sustainability modules from around the University. Linking to prestigious industry-collaborative research projects will allow students action their research and knowledge to advance careers in sustainable practice, consultancy, policy and academia.
Due to the on-going difficulties with travel, distancing and health concerns UCD are making alternative arrangements for this autumn, some of which involves re-structuring courses with more online and blended teaching.
It has been decided that it is not possible to run the Professional Diploma lecture programme in its previous format for this year, as large lecture groups will not be permitted.
This autumn, we will instead be providing structured learning material online. This will be supported by a new set of weekly tutorials for students in small groups.
Updated course information will be available in late July.
The Professional Diploma (Architecture) is the final professional examination for architectural graduates leading to entry to the Register for Architects in Ireland. The programme is offered on a part-time flexible basis over two semesters, at the time that an architectural graduate is undertaking minimum 2 years professional practical experience under supervision. Graduates arrange their own placements in architectural practice, which may be in Ireland or abroad, and the programme is structured to provide a context and support to graduates during their professional training.
The programme is delivered by UCD academic staff, practicing architects and other professionals with expertise in critical subject areas. Since 2013, the programme is also available online. The course is flexible , it will be delivered online in 2020/21 in the Autumn Trimester. Lecture recordings, learning material and readings will be available to students for flexible learning, supported by weekly group tutorials. Assessments are available in both Autumn Semester (January) and Spring Semester (May).
The focus of the Professional Diploma is to ensure that the course is current, relevant and useful to architectural graduates beginning their professional careers. This means equipping graduates with an understanding of the ethical and professional obligations arising in practice, within the context of their own personal careers and the broader construction industry. Preparing for independent practice as a professional requires a graduate to develop key skills in research, critical analysis, objectivity and communication. In order to achieve this a graduate must become fully conversant in industry-specific practices, procedures and statutory requirements.
The Professional Diploma (Architecture) is accredited by the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI) as Registration Body (Ireland) and Competent Authority (European Union) for direct admission to the ‘Register for Architects’ in Ireland.
- Practical Experience Advice Note 1 2020/21
- Case Study Protocol 2020/21
Applications for 2020/21 are currently open online.
The website and course information is correct in principal, however, UCD is currently implementing new structural changes in line with the new academic regulations (applicable 2019-2020). We will update the website / course information again by the end May 2019.
Join the Mailing List for information about the Professional Diploma (Architecture) 2018-19 at:
Course Administrator- Michelle Murray, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel (01) 716 2761 (Mondays- Wednesdays).
Each year the School offers a range of Continuing Professional Development courses. They range from lectures to workshops to full academic modules qualifying for recognised CPD points.
The UCD Professional Practice lecture programme and online programme are also available as CPD and applications will be accepted from July for the Autumn Trimester. Applications will be accepted from January for the Spring Trimester. The lecture programme is available as lectures in the autumn and also available online on a flexible basis in the autumn, spring and summer.
Architectural Practice: Mondays in September (11:00am-5:30pm)
Construction Legislation: Mondays in October (11:00am-5:30pm)
Procurement & Contracts: Mondays in November (11:00am-5:30pm)
Self-directed learning with online material (as podcasts, slides and lecture notes) - equivalent to 20-25 hours lectures per module, in three modules as above, either in Autumn (September-December) or Spring (January- April) or Summer (May to August).
This CPD programme is suitable for architects and other construction professionals and practitioners who are interested in Continuing Professional Development for career development, up-skilling or as a refresher course. The lectures are delivered by a range of academics and practitioners in specialist areas across the range of areas relevant to practice, procurement and construction in Ireland.
Note: Assessments are not included in the CPD course, applicants who intend to register for UCD assessments/ academic awards should contact the School directly.
You can access our Booking Centre here. Bookings are now open and early booking is advisable as places are limited
Upcoming CPD events in UCD Architecture, Planning & Environmental Policy will be posted here.
The Masters of Landscape Architecture (MLA) is a taught, two-year, full-time, professionally recognized graduate programme that builds on competencies gained in undergraduate level Landscape Architecture programmes in Ireland and abroad. The MLA is for students wishing to gain a higher professional qualification.
The capacity to develop planning and urban design solutions, to analyse them critically and to provide guidance in regard to their implementation is one for which there is a growing demand. Furthermore, urban design lies at the interface of architecture and urban planning, with both disciplines contributing complementary but contrasting approaches to urban design theory and practice. In this context, the MSc Planning, Development & Urban Design has been specifically tailored to enable fully-qualified architects to further develop, build upon and enhance relevant pre-existing professional knowledge, understanding, and skills, to specialise in both spatial planning and urban design.
The programme also draws upon the particular research strengths of the School, providing students with the opportunity to engage with innovative approaches to sustainable and resilient urbanism, exploring emerging challenges surrounding the role of urban design in mitigating or adapting to climate change, in promoting ‘healthy’ cities or neighbourhoods, and the incorporation of ‘nature’ into design (e.g. nature-based solutions) to address habitat fragmentation and biodiversity loss.
Urban design lies at the interface of architecture and urban planning, with both disciplines contributing complementary but contrasting approaches to urban design theory and practice. This Masters programme is focused on the role of urban design in the context of urban planning, and is delivered with an emphasis on the distinct methodologies, professional perspectives and pedagogies of that discipline.
It provides specialist knowledge and skills in: urban design theory; urban conservation; risk, resilience and sustainability; as well as social science research methods applied to the built environment. The programme will enable graduates to work as part of a multidisciplinary team to create better places through urban design. Students will also have the opportunity to draw upon the School’s specialist research and teaching in environmental policy, to place urban design centre-stage in tackling wider environmental risks.
While the programme will be of interest primarily to students from a planning background, it will also appeal to graduates from a variety of other disciplinary backgrounds wishing to specialise in urban design and planning, including those with qualifications in geography, anthropology, sociology, environmental studies, engineering, property economics, surveying, politics, social science, and law.
The Master of Regional and Urban Planning (MRUP) is a two-year professional planning degree, which will provide you with the first steps to becoming a professional chartered planner. The MRUP offers you the opportunity to develop the knowledge, skills and values fundamental to a career in planning and skills and knowledge which are transferrable to other careers. Applications are welcome from graduates from any discipline, though undergraduate disciplines with a thematic link to Planning are preferred. The programme is also suitable for those with a professional background in a field related to Planning who might wish to develop and broaden their skillset.
If you have already completed a three year undergraduate degree in spatial planning you should refer to our one year planning programmes the MRUP (Accelerated) programme, the MSc in Urban Design and Planning and the MSc in Environmental Policy.
Societies and governments across the globe are faced with increasingly complex environmental challenges, from climate change to local environmental quality in our cities and regions. Within this context, there is a growing demand for graduates with a capacity to develop environmental policy choices, to analyse them critically and to provide guidance in policy implementation.
The aim of the MSc in Environmental Policy is to provide students with the professional knowledge, skills and tools to equip them for a career in the environmental field while contributing to a more sustainable and resilient future. The MSc provides both introductory and specialised modules in Environmental Policy, and as such we welcome applicants from a diverse range of academic backgrounds including social sciences and arts, environmental sciences, law and business studies, and engineering.