URBPLAN 715 : Urban Planning Research Dissertation

Creative Arts and Industries

2022 Semester Two (1225) (45 POINTS)

Course Prescription

An in-depth, self guided research investigation relevant to urban planning with an advanced examination and application of critical quantitative and/or qualitative research skills for urban planning.

Course Requirements

Prerequisite: URBPLAN 701, 705

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Have gained an understanding of quantitative and qualitative research skills and methods, their strengths and weaknesses and appropriateness for urban planning practice, and the ability to apply those skills or methods in independent research projects (Capability 1.3, 2.1 and 2.3)
  2. Be able to provide evidence of sustained research capability (Capability 1.2 and 2.2)
  3. Be able to contribute to the understanding of planning theory and practice (Capability 3.1 and 4.2)
  4. Have developed research skills applicable for professional urban planning practice (Capability 2.2, 3.1, 3.2 and 6.3)
  5. Display an understanding of sustainability and its relevance to the research topic (Capability 6.1, 6.2 and 6.3)
  6. Formulate a research proposal which demonstrates critical thinking (Capability 2.2, 5.1 and 5.3)
  7. Conduct independent research according to an appropriate methodology (Capability 5.1, 5.2 and 5.3)
  8. Be able to present and communicate outcomes to a high professional standard (Capability 4.1 and 4.2)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Research Proposal Individual Coursework
Research 100% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Research Proposal

Teaching & Learning Methods

Students work independently under the guidance of a research supervisor. Students are expected to assume control and take responsibility for their research. You will meet regularly with your supervisor for advice, support and critical feedback throughout the semester.

Workload Expectations

This course is 45point course and students are expected to spend 450 hours of study over the semester. After an initial meeting with the course co-ordinator, followed by scheduled meetings with the supervisor, this will be a self-governing study. 

Delivery Mode

Campus Experience

Attendance is expected at scheduled activities including the tutorial to complete components of the course.
The course will not include live online events.
The activities for the course are scheduled as a block delivery.

Learning Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.

Farthing, S. (2016) Research Design for Urban Planning: a student's guide, London: Sage
MacCullum, D, Babb, C. & Curtis, C. (2019) Doing Research in Urban and Regional Planning, London: Routledge

Student Feedback

At the end of every semester students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback and respond with summaries and actions.

Your feedback helps teachers to improve the course and its delivery for future students.

Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the department and faculty staff-student consultative committees.

Other Information

University of Auckland Human Participants Ethics Committee (UAHPEC) approval. Where fieldwork involves interviewing people - be it officers at a local council, politicians, or members of the public - UAHPEC approval will be required. Questionnaires (whether online, paper-based or used as a schedule for discussions with informants) must be agreed with your supervisor, before submission to UAHPEC for approval. Approval can take several weeks, so it is strongly recommended that you plan ahead. Any survey work undertaken without UAHPEC approval cannot be assessed as part of your research project.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Class Representatives

Class representatives are students tasked with representing student issues to departments, faculties, and the wider university. If you have a complaint about this course, please contact your class rep who will know how to raise it in the right channels. See your departmental noticeboard for contact details for your class reps.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website http://disability.auckland.ac.nz

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/academic-information/exams-and-final-results/during-exams/aegrotat-and-compassionate-consideration.html.

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Learning Continuity

In the event of an unexpected disruption, we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and course assessment continues to meet the principles of the University’s assessment policy. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator/director, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the university website for information about how to proceed.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/forms-policies-and-guidelines/student-policies-and-guidelines/student-charter.html.


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course students may be asked to submit coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. In exceptional circumstances changes to elements of this course may be necessary at short notice. Students enrolled in this course will be informed of any such changes and the reasons for them, as soon as possible, through Canvas.

Published on 14/10/2021 01:08 p.m.