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TCP1028 : Planning for a Better World

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Abigail Schoneboom
  • Lecturer: Professor Geoff Vigar
  • Owning School: Architecture, Planning & Landscape
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


Aims: This module explores what planning is today and in the near future, helping students to link their motivations and values to tackling societal challenges It explores planning as a profession (and different specialisms within it), situating it within the social sciences while mapping its connections to other disciplines, including the arts. In Semester 1 it focuses on planning as a discipline and outlines its potential to tackle the key urban challenges of the Twenty-First Century in the UK and beyond. In Semester 2 the module continues this focus while helping students to think about their own future work or activity in relation to these issues.

Outline Of Syllabus

Outline of syllabus:
In semester 1 (10 credits), the module focuses on planning’s role in managing urban change in the UK particularly. It then critically examines planning’s role in tackling key grand challenges such as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. It explores how planning sits alongside other professions/roles in delivering change to place, with an introduction to the different specialisms within planning itself. A case study development site will be explored in more depth to understand critically how planning (and other) professionals coordinate their expertise to deliver development. An examination of a current development and related planning documents will support students’ learning and create the context for the first assignment.

In semester 2 (10 credits), the module will investigate professional and other perspectives on planning through a lecture/workshop/fieldtrip series that will bring real world planning into focus in relation to the grand challenges that were introduced in semester 1. A directed programme of interactions with plans and planners, and skill-development sessions will allow students to complete their second assignment, the Reflective Piece.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture291:0029:00Lectures with presentation, short activities and discussion. In person.
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1124:00124:00Assessment preparation and completion: Additional reading.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading241:0024:00Lecture materials & site visit preparation: Planning media articles on professional viewpoints.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching111:0011:00The workshops explore the concepts introduced. In person.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork18:008:00Day field trip in Semester 2. In person.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork22:004:00Site visits to look at site related to assessment. In person.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures will deliver key concepts.
Small group teaching (mostly semester 2) will provide students with opportunities for discussion with academic staff and planning professionals on complex and contested issues. They will provide opportunities for short skill-based tasks and non-assessed exercises that can be used for giving feedback and as practice for the assessment submissions.
Structured Guided Learning offers alternative methods to explore and critique key concepts.
Structured Independent Study allows students to prepare for their assessment submission with tailored synchronous and non-synchronous materials.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report1A301000 words. The report will recreate a real-life process where professionals offer their professional expertise and judgement in relation to a proposed development on a local site.
Reflective log2A301500 words. Includes personal goals and finessed version of role play.
Oral Presentation2M20Active participation in the role play activity.
Practical/lab report1M20Active participation in the site visit activities.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The Report and Practical will recreate a real-life process where professionals offer their professional expertise and judgement in relation to a proposed development on a local site as well as thinking about a particular planning specialism.

The Reflective Piece and Role Play explore the student’s own reflections and encourage them to explore the point of view of stakeholders related to the fieldwork/case study material presented in semester 2, incorporating learning from the lectures, workshops and guest speakers. They will draw on learning that has taken place throughout the module, considering the professional values and skills explored on the module, and considering their own personal development as they progress into Stage 2.

The Role Play allows the students to learn in a simulated planning-related setting, developing their verbal and dialogue skills in a playful atmosphere. They will get ideas from each other's presentation and what they do in the role play feeds directly into creating a written piece that they further polish and submit as part of the Reflective Piece.

Reading Lists