KA5018 - Urban Planning and Development

What will I learn on this module?

Planning mediates between competing interests in society and guides, shapes and regulates the use of land and property. The primary policy goal is to deliver and/or facilitate 'sustainable development'.

In this module you will explore the significance of planning in order to facilitate economic, social and environmental objectives within the development process. The module explores the nature of planning from a development perspective by engaging with policy, practical examples and key development concepts. It considers the guiding principles of planning, the statutory processes and procedural dimensions, the management of development, contemporary planning practice, key actors and agencies, synergies between planning and urban regeneration and the competing and evolving dynamics of urban development.

You will develop, throughout this module, academic and professional skills relating to the evaluation of policy; effective communication; self-direction and personal responsibility and appreciate social and ethical aspects of the development process.

How will I learn on this module?

You will learn through lectures, seminars and independent learning. In addition, directed tasks will enhance your learning and will include, as an example, attending a planning committee and conducting a site appraisal of a real development site. The lectures will cover theory and concepts, case study material and exemplars, including guest lectures from planning/development practitioners who are dealing with contemporary planning issues. Seminars are designed to allow you to explore issues raised in lectures and background reading in greater depth. Directed and independent learning tasks will be set each week to allow you to explore the module material through group discussions, debates and individual exploration of topics.

If you are in employment your workplace will be the main learning environment, in effect acting as a framework for urban planning and development. However, tutor support will be available via drop-in sessions throughout the module study period. If you are in employment it is recognised that there is the need for modes of blended learning delivery, experiential assessment, and opportunities to combine work and study through independent study, embedded learning opportunities, and relevant communications technologies. Lecture capture will be used to elaborate on the content contained in any teaching material along with audio recording and notes to support presentations on key topics.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Support will include formative feedback from tutors during small-group seminars and one-to-one sessions (via the Department’s open door policy). In addition tutors will use the module’s discussion boards and blogs on the University’s eLearning Portal, to respond to frequently asked questions, so that the whole module group can benefit from advice and guidance. Time will be set aside in lectures and seminars to provide opportunities for Q&A on assignments and formative feedback will be provided. Work will be submitted electronically via the eLearning Portal.

If you are in employment your workplace will be the main learning environment, however, tutor support will be available via drop-in sessions throughout the module study period. The eLP, telephone and email will be used as a means of communication once the initial briefings have taken place and work-based visits will be made by tutors if appropriate.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

The electronic reading list will includes core and secondary, module-wide readings. This will supplemented week-by-week with additional material relevant to the themes of specific lectures and seminars as well as notification of any contemporary changes to planning policy or guidance.

Key texts for this module include:

Communities and Local Government (CLG) (2012) National Planning Policy Framework. London: The Stationery Office.

Clifford, B and Tewdwr-Jones, M (2013) The Collaborating Planner, Bristol: Policy Press

Cullingworth,B. et al. (2015) Town and Country Planning in the UK, London: Routledge

Greed, C. (2014) Planning in the UK, Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan

Hall, P. & Tewdwr-Jones, M. (2010) Urban and Regional Planning, Fifth Edition. London: Routledge.

Parker, G and Doak, J (2012) Key Concepts in Planning, London: Sage

Ratcliffe, J, Keeping, M and Stubbs, M (2009) Urban Planning and Real Estate Development, London: Routledge

Rydin, Y (2011) The Purpose of Planning: Creating Sustainable Towns and Cities, Bristol; Policy Press

Selected key journals for the module: You should register for alerts with all these journals. A good plan is to register with journals for “alerts” by email. Most journals offer this as a free service. Essentially you register and give an email address to which an alert with contents of the latest edition is sent when it is published.

European Planning Studies

Journal of Planning Practice & Research

Progress in Planning

Town & Country Planning

Town Planning Review

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• ML01: Review and explain the national and sub-national planning policies intended to deliver sustainable development;
• ML02: Critically evaluate the processes of development management to regulate the planning and development process;
• ML03: Appraise the sometimes-competing objectives and resulting tensions of the different actors/stakeholders in the planning and development process.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• ML04: Develop practical skills of analysing and comprehending policy and applying it to real case studies

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
• ML05: Demonstrate the capacity for independent, evidence based thinking and decision making in relational to real world planning issues

How will I be assessed?

Formative assessment: tasks, particularly within the seminar sessions, will provide formative feedback that will assist in consolidating your learning as you move through the module.

Summative assessment: There is one assessment for this module.

The assessment will be a professional report based on selecting one application from a range of live planning applications currently being assessed by a Local Planning Authority - to study in depth (assesses MLOs 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5).

The coursework will be submitted, assessed and feedback provided to you online.





Module abstract

The City of Newcastle and its surrounding regions will be used as our ‘urban laboratory’ to explore contemporary city-region planning and development issues.

Newcastle is a wonderful example of how historic layers of development combine to produce a modern city (the grandeur of Grainger Town, the brutalism of the 1960s re-development, the regenerated Quayside and evolving revitalised historic quarters of the City, e.g. Stephenson Quarter, East Pilgrim Street, Ouseburn, etc.). This setting enables students to develop a focussed, robust understanding of the, history, aims, drivers and tensions within the UK planning system and in so doing provides students with a comprehensive knowledge of the evolution of contemporary planning.

The module will enable you to develop an appreciation of how planning interacts with development activity, by applying theories and policies from contemporary planning case studies and applying these to live case studies.

Current planning and development practitioners will provide insights and tacit knowledge from the ‘frontline’ of planning and development practice. This module is designed to replicate the skills, knowledge and aptitudes that planning and development practitioners need to possess to operate effectively in ‘real world’ real estate markets.

The module contributes to programme learning outcomes by developing your comprehension and critical thinking skills. If you are in employment your workplace will act as a framework for urban planning and development to develop your ability to critically appraise policies and academic theories and concepts.

Course info

UCAS Code K440

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Architecture and Built Environment

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


Useful Links

Find out about our distinctive approach at 

Admissions Terms and Conditions

Fees and Funding

Admissions Policy

Admissions Complaints Policy