This is a professional degree accredited by the South African Council of Planners (SACPLAN) at NQF level 8, which equips candidates with critical, practical, and research skills.
Candidates acquiring the degree can register as a professional planner after two years of relevant work experience in the planning profession.
The BSc Hons URP also provides entry into Masters coursework programmes offered by the School (such as the MSc(Development Planning), the Masters of Urban Design, and the Masters of Urban Studies in the fields of Urban Management, Urban Politics, Housing, Research and Sustainable and Energy Efficient Cities), as well as the research-based MSc Urban and Regional Planning.
The Honours programme aims to develop and consolidate candidates’ undergraduate planning skills. It includes courses of direct significance to engage with and contribute to the profession: professional practice and ethics, planning law, and advanced planning theory. It includes a major integrated planning project, allowing candidates to apply their cumulative understanding of theory and practice in the preparation of a spatial framework. The Honours programme also contains a substantial research project, which develops candidates’ capacity to research an issue independently, to synthesise knowledge in an area, undertake field research, analyse findings, and write up an extended report.
Why Study Planning at Wits?
The planning programme at Wits is located within the most economically important metropolitan complex in Africa, Johannesburg - a centre of vibrant urban development and change. The programme strives to provide quality education that is appropriate to the needs of a rapidly urbanising country, and a continent facing enormous developmental changes. The programme is committed to producing students equipped to work both locally internationally, who can respond to challenges of globalisation, new technologies, inequality, economic and cultural practices.
The planning programme at Wits is the oldest and largest university-based planning programme in South Africa. The programme is forging a strong network of links with other institutions in Africa and internationally and a number of collaborative initiatives are underway. It engages directly with issues of critical concern to the management and future development of human settlement through service learning, focused research and supportive relationships with policymakers. Areas of research focus in the programme include human settlements, sustainable cities, housing, gender and the role of planners and other actors in shaping urban space.