How to apply for the Master of Research (Planning)

The Master of Research (Planning) is a two-year research training degree with an accredited specialisation in urban and regional planning. The course makes available a variety of career pathways in urban planning and management as well as doctoral study.

The first stage is coursework and the second stage is a supervised research project.

Step 1: Review the admission criteria

Western Sydney University must be satisfied that you are able to commence study at a suitable level for entry into the Master of Research (Planning). 

To be eligible for admission, you must have:

  • successfully completed a Bachelor degree or a Masters degree in a discipline such as Planning, Architecture, Engineering, Property, Urban Studies, Landscape Architecture, Geography, Environmental Management; and
  • achieved an admission average mark equal to or above a minimum of 65 in their most recent degree.

You can calculate your admission average mark (AAM) by adding all your marks awarded for completed units in your degree, and then dividing the total by the number of units studied in the degree.

If your most recent qualification is more than five years old, demonstrated professional experience in a related discipline will be considered at the discretion of the Dean, Graduate Studies.

Step 2: Contact the Higher Degree Research Director

All Master of Research applicants should contact the Higher Degree Research Director in a School or Institute relevant to your area of research interest to assist you in identifying a potential academic supervisor.

You should send an email introducing yourself, describing your qualifications and experience, and provide a statement of intent that clearly identifies your area of research interest.

It is recommended that you confirm an academic supervisor prior to submitting your application, however, this is not a requirement to apply. Your supervision will be finalised during the first year of the program.

Step 3: Prepare a statement of intent

A statement of intent outlines a general research area for your project. It does not need to be very detailed and should be approximately 250-words in length.

Visit the how to write a statement of intent page for more information.

Step 4: Prepare your documentation

You will be required to include the following information as part of your application:

  • Certified proof of citizenship status (passport, birth certificate, citizenship papers, etc.) or certified proof of residency status (Australian permanent residents only).
  • Evidence of English language proficiency for applicants who completed their previous qualifications outside of Australia.
  • A statement of intent which clearly identifies your area of research interest and a potential academic supervisor (maximum of 250 words).
  • Evidence of employment directly related to urban and regional planning and/or research training (if applicable).

All copies of official documents must be certified according to Western Sydney University requirements.

Master of Research (Planning) applicants are not required to submit a research proposal or research case.

Step 5: Submit your application

All applications must be submitted using the Online Application Form. Applications can be made at any time and there is no cost to apply.

Closing dates

You can apply to start in either the first half of the year (1H) or the second half of the year (2H).

  • Applications to commence in 1H 2020 close 10 November 2019 for international applicants.
  • Applications to commence in 1H 2020 close 26 January 2020 for domestic applicants.
  • Applications to commence in 2H 2020 close 29 March 2020 for international applicants.
  • Applications to commence in 2H 2020 close 31 May 2020 for domestic applicants.

Late applications are considered on a case-by-case basis with priority given to applications received before the closing dates.

It may take 6-8 weeks to receive an outcome for your application. All offers of admission require agreement by the relevant School or Institute for the provision of supervision and resources.

International applicants from this list of countries are required to apply via an authorised agent.

Apply now and start your unlimited journey.

Further enquiries

For more information or advice about applying for the Master of Research, please contact