Skip to main content


TCP1027 : Shaping Towns and Cities

  • Offered for Year: 2021/22
  • Module Leader(s): Professor Tim Townshend
  • Lecturer: Dr Diego Garcia Mejuto
  • Owning School: Architecture, Planning & Landscape
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This module seeks to:

•       introduce students to the context and development of ideas about cities and urban spaces, paying particular attention to the historical emergence and development of planning ideas, their advocates, their outcomes and their influence today;
•       provide an overview of planning history to help students understand the development of British towns and cities, within the context of the development of the British planning system;
•       help students to appreciate the importance of social economic, political and technological factors in shaping urban space.

The content outlined above will - in parallel - provide practice material to teach students a range of academic study skills required for them to complete their degree in Town Planning successfully.

Outline Of Syllabus

The course will be delivered as blended learning with synchronous and non-synchronous sessions – all synchronous sessions will be PiP – unless they need to be moved on-line.

Session 1 - Course Introduction Lecture + Q&A session (synchronous) - Urban Problems Lecture (3 x 20min mini lectures + assoc. activities - non-synchronous)

Session 2 - Critical reading Lecture (Pcap, 2x20min - synchronous) Reading groups (2x1h). Early solutions (3x20 min mini lectures + assoc. activities)

Session 3 - Putting it together (lecture / 20min non sync) + synchronous lecture (Pcap, 2x20min) Discussion groups around the three texts and the first assignment exercise (2x1h) Metroland- Urban Sprawl (3x20min mini lectures + assoc activities - non-synchronous)

Session 4 - Assessing students’ work: is it lucid, is it critical, is it deliberative? (workshop)-       Discussion group: 3 essays each to mark and bring to session (2x1h synchronous). Modernism (3x 20 min mini lectures + assoc. activities - non-synchronous)
Session 5 - Choosing an Essay Topic Lecture (Pcap, 2x20min). Workshop: supported choice of research topic (2x1h - synchronous)

Session 6 - Bus tours 2x5hrs (synchronous)

Session 7 - New Towns (3x20min mini lectures + reading non-synchronous)

Session 8 - Essay Writing Lecture (Pcap, 2x20min). Workshop (Teams/Zoom, synchronous 2x1h). New Urbanism (3 x 20 min mini lectures + associated activities – non-synchronous).

Session 9 - Referencing and Plagiarism Lecture (Pcap, 2x20min) Workshop (2x1h synchronous) Citizen Power (3x20 min mini lecture + assoc. activities - non synchronous)

Session 10 - Deregulating Planning (3x20 min mini lecture + assoc. activities )
Session 11 - Essay surgery - 2hrs synchronous

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture152:0030:00non-synchronous
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture12:002:00synchronous
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion150:0050:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading195:0095:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching72:0014:00Working synchronous
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork15:005:00Synchronous
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study14:004:00Fieldwork
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The lecture/video scaffolded sessions provide students with an opportunity to engage with the knowledge content of the module, and the workshops, walking tour, and various skills related assignments help them to use this material.

The skills tasks are related to the knowledge content to maximise the interaction between the material (ensure relevance in both directions – skill and knowledge elements).

The Bus tour gives the students a chance to see Newcastle, and have the ideas emerging out of the lectures applied to a particular city, and the walking tour enables them to apply these ideas themselves.

The formative assessment elements help students build their confidence and an early indication of how they are adjusting to degree level marking, and early feedback on how they might improve.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise1M20Notes on discussion of reading workshop (linked to workshop)
Essay1M801,500-2,000 written essay
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Essay1MEssay Plan Assignment
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Assignments are linked into the skills students are acquiring through the workshops, and attached to the written essay assignment. The skills related workshops draw on the knowledge content of the module to give students a chance to reflect on the material.

The formative assessment elements help students build their confidence and an early indication of how they are adjusting to degree level marking, and early feedback on how they might improve.

Reading Lists