For the latest updates on COVID-19 arrangements and advice and guidelines visit our COVID Safe Campus page

Planning a sustainable future for our communities

Do you have an interest in the big issues facing society and in shaping the way in which we live, work and play? If so, studying geography and planning could be for you.

Geography is the study of interactions between human society, the natural and built environments, and the places produced from these interrelationships, whereas planners help design the future of our cities, towns and regions. While these two areas often intersect, they each provide diverse areas of specialisation.

At UNE, geography and planning can be studied as a major or in elective units in many of our undergraduate courses. Alternatively, you could study a Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning or a Diploma in Town Planning.

We also offer Geographic Information Systems (GIS) teaching and research at all levels. In fact, GIS forms a core part of the undergraduate environmental science and planning degrees. You can study GIS in fields such as wildlife distribution, vegetation management, wildlife and parks management, resource planning and wetlands mapping and monitoring.

Our Geography and Planning staff are known for their research expertise, and partner with a range of national and international associations to help you stay at the forefront of the issues that matter most.

Explore our Geography and Planning courses now. 

Courses by study level

Add an area of expertise to your CV and gain an undergraduate qualification — without committing to a full bachelor’s degree. You will develop research, critical thinking, and writing skills in the core units. With the minor and elective units, you tailor the course to your specific interests and career objectives by choosing from an extensive selection of arts, humanities and social science units.

With our Advanced Diploma in Arts you have the freedom to explore related subjects, or a range of different topics. With this flexibility, your advanced diploma can be customised to your aspirational and practical needs. It will also qualify you to go on to a Bachelor of Arts if you’re keen to continue your studies. Consider this course as a springboard towards future proofing your career.

Duration
  • 1.5 years full-time
  • Up to 6 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online
Bachelor of Arts

Even though one of our longest-standing degrees, the Bachelor of Arts (BA) is still relevant in today’s rapidly changing world. It equips you with the creative, critical and analytical skills in demand by employers, and is transferable across a range of workplaces.

Majors include: Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, Ancient History, Ancient Near East, Archaeology, Australian History, Chinese, Classical Languages, Criminology, Cultural Heritage, English, French, German, History, Human Geography, Indigenous Studies, Indonesian, Islamic Studies, Italian, Japanese, Linguistics, Medieval and Early Modern Europe, Music, Peace Studies, Philosophy, Political and International Studies, Physical Geography, Psychology, Screen and Media Studies, Sociology, Spanish, Studies in Religion, Theatre and Performance, and Writing.

When you study a BA at UNE, you will become a specialist in a discipline of your choice, with the freedom to explore related subjects or a range of different topics.

Duration
  • 3 years full-time
  • Up to 10 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • Online
  • On Campus
Bachelor of Science

Constant technological disruption and new discoveries in science influence every aspect of our lives, meaning that there has never been a better time than now to safeguard your future career with scientific knowledge and practical skills. With 20 majors to choose from, UNE’s Bachelor of Science is flexibly delivered by experts in research and teaching. Tailor your degree towards generalist or specialist science, while developing a broad scientific base and refining your abilities in critical analysis and complex problem solving. Our majors span the pure and applied sciences, with specialisation available in traditional disciplines and emerging fields.

Duration
  • 3 years full-time
  • Up to 10 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online

By studying UNE’s Bachelor of Social Science degree you will develop a comprehensive and valuable understanding of human societies and social thought, behaviour and relationships in their varied social, psychological and political manifestations, with potential for a rewarding career in social science related areas.  You will get a thorough grounding in sociology and psychology, plus you can choose from a broad range of majors including political studies, philosophy, international studies, and criminology to satisfy your interests, research and work. The skills you will learn in research, critical analysis and evaluation are transferable across a range of employment opportunities, future proofing your career.

Duration
  • 3 years full-time
  • Up to 10 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online

Urban and regional planners develop strategies and design communities in which we all live, work and play. Planning helps balance community, environmental and economic needs, while recognising cultural significance in order to improve our quality of life and create sustainable and vital communities. Our Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning provides you with the necessary knowledge and skills to critically analyse and solve complex problems — skills that help you adapt as a professional in a changing world.

Duration
  • 4 years full-time
  • Up to 10 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
Mode
  • Online
  • On Campus
Diploma in Arts

Are you looking to add an additional area of expertise to your CV to future proof your career, without committing to a full degree? Perhaps you just want to dip a toe into university study, with the option of continuing to an advanced diploma or even a bachelor’s degree? Well, our Diploma in Arts is the perfect way to achieve both goals. This course will equip you with a variety of fundamental skills and knowledge in a range of subjects in the arts, humanities and social sciences.

Duration
  • 1 year full-time
  • Up to 4 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online

Designed to provide an opportunity for first-time university study, UNE’s Diploma in Town Planning will open doors to a career in planning with employment potential across all Australian regions. This online course provides you with foundation knowledge and skills to put you on track for a career in town planning, including rural planning and urban development, that aims to help communities work and thrive. As a pathway to university study, this diploma is also your springboard to further study and career development.

Duration
  • Up to 4 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online

As a high achiever, honours is an extra year of study after completing your undergraduate degree. UNE’s Bachelor of Social Science with Honours allows you to extend your studies in psychology or sociology, to build on knowledge and skills in social science theory while undertaking research in your chosen topic.

Honours is a valuable, additional qualification that improves career prospects, plus you'll have the option to proceed to higher degree studies — either a masters or PhD. With an honours degree, your skills in critical analysis and research will be transferable across a range of fields, future proofing your career.

Duration
  • 1 year full-time
  • 2 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • Online
  • On Campus

Are you a graduate looking to add new skills to your CV to reinforce or redirect your career? Perhaps you are keen to pursue a personal interest in the arts or humanities. Or maybe you are interested in completing a master’s but aren’t sure if you can commit to a full degree. If any of the above fits your situation, the Graduate Certificate in Arts may be the perfect course for you. It offers an extensive range of subject areas to choose from, to extend your knowledge.

Majors include: Archaeology, English and Writing, History, Geography, Languages, Linguistics, Media and Communications, Peace Studies, Philosophy, Political and International Studies, Sociology, Theatre and Performance, Water Sustainability.

In addition, you will be trained to discover and process information, think independently, communicate effectively, and exercise initiative – all skills that employers today are looking for.

Duration
  • Up to 4 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online

Adapt to an evolving workplace and open the door to new career opportunities with UNE’s Graduate Certificate in Professional Practice. Whether you want to create more career choices, hone your specialist skills, or take a new career direction, we will work with you to customise a course to match your skills and aspirations.

Choose from a full breadth of subjects. Avoid getting bogged down in a lengthy, traditional course, and instead, play to your natural strengths, refine your skills and draw on your experience to prepare for the future. And do it all with the support of an expert academic success advisor with 1:1 guidance from start to finish.

Duration
  • 0.5 years full-time
  • 2 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • Online

Design a bespoke course and prepare for a rapidly evolving workplace with the UNE Graduate Diploma in Professional Practice. Whether you want to advance your career, hone your skills or embark on a new career direction, we’ll work with you to design a course to match your skills and aspirations. You will have the freedom to assemble your course from a full breadth of subjects, play to your strengths and draw from your experience to achieve your goals. Learn in a way that suits your timeframe and do it all with the support of an expert academic success advisor — with one-on-one guidance from start to finish. You’ll be paving your pathway to the next stage of your career.

Duration
  • 1 year full-time
  • Up to 4 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • Online

Planning integrates environmental, economic and social aspects of development with the competing needs of communities, companies and governments. This complex and dynamic field requires planning professionals to maintain up-to-date knowledge and skills to keep up with a rapidly-changing environment.  Whether you’re looking to upskill or enter the planning profession, UNE’s postgraduate Graduate Diploma in Urban and Regional Planning offers a strong foundation of core units for understanding the complexities of urban and regional planning, and your choice of three from a long list of special interest areas. This course is fully accredited with the Planning Institute of Australia.

By developing specialist knowledge, plus your wider skills including critical thinking and problem solving, you’ll be well positioned to adapt to a professional environment that is constantly evolving.

Duration
  • 1.5 years full-time
  • Up to 6 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • Online
  • On Campus
Master of Arts

Employers value skills in communication, critical thinking and research — the core skills you’ll develop in the Master of Arts at UNE. A master’s degree can be a qualification to enable a career change or provide you with additional expertise to upskill in your current area of interest. At UNE you have the flexibility to choose a major from 26 specialty areas, dive into research, and tailor the course to suit your interests or professional direction. On completion, you will have developed the knowledge and skills that will better prepare you to deal with the diverse challenges of a rapidly changing world.

Duration
  • 1 or 1.5 or 2 years full-time
  • Up to 6 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
  • Trimester 3 - Oct 2021
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online

Planning experts work strategically, often with competing stakeholders, to achieve the best social, environmental and economic outcomes. UNE’s Master of Urban and Regional Planning offers a multi-disciplinary, comprehensive course that integrates the knowledge and skills required by planning experts to achieve the best outcomes. You will research and learn new technologies, analyse problems, and generate creative solutions. Your learned, transferable skills in critical analysis, planning, and management will set you up for success in your profession — this course will help future proof your career.

Duration
  • 1.5 years full-time
  • Up to 6 years part-time
Start
  • Trimester 1 - Mar 2021
  • Trimester 2 - Jun 2021
Mode
  • Online
  • On Campus

A Doctor of Philosophy is the pinnacle of academic study. Using rigorous and systematic research, combined with critical analysis, you will add to society’s understanding of complex issues at the cutting edge of your discipline or profession.

When you complete your PhD at UNE, you will be recognised as an expert in your area of study. Your original discoveries and innovations will be applied to benefit society and industry in Australia and worldwide.

Duration
  • 3 years full-time
  • 6 years part-time
Start
  • Research Period 1
  • Research Period 2
Mode
  • On Campus
  • Online

High quality research and analysis allows us to better understand the complex issues we face in industry and society. With UNE’s Master of Philosophy by research, your original findings and insights will add to the body of knowledge and inform decision making in your specialist area.

You will work independently, with personalised support from recognised experts in your area of study every step of the way. Expand your expertise, hone your research skills, and immediately apply your knowledge in a research topic of your choice.

Duration
  • 1.5 or 2 years full-time
  • Up to 4 years part-time
Start
  • Research Period 1
  • Research Period 2
Mode
  • Online
  • On Campus
  • Bespoke Graduate Certificate: design your own 4 unit postgraduate course and have your work experience recognised in the process.
  • ‘Fundamental’ Bespoke Course: choose two, three or four fundamental units from a traditional degree. If you are planning a new direction, or adding a new set of skills to your portfolio, you may want to start with this option. These units provide a foundation, or a ‘base camp’, to return to if you want to later progress to a full degree.
  • ‘Advanced’ Bespoke Course: choose two, three or four advanced units from a full degree. This is a great strategy for staying current in your field, or advancing your knowledge.
  • ‘Critical Content’ Bespoke Course: choose two, three or four units from any of the available units in a degree to create a Critical Content Bespoke Course. This option lets you get the knowledge you need without the time and cost of a full degree.
  • ‘Mix and Match’ Bespoke Course: combine two, three or four units from different degrees and disciplines to design your mix and match Bespoke Course. This option lets you diversify your knowledge.

What our students say

Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning graduate in his blue Gunnedah Shire Council shirt

The Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning degree was a very practical course that gave me a wonderful set of skills to take to my career in town planning.

Andrew Johns, Director Planning and Environment Services, Gunnedah Shire Council

Why study with us?

82%
Student Support
Good Universities Guide
$66,800
Median Salary
Good Universities Guide
84%
Overall Experience
Good Universities Guide

Where studying Geography and Planning can take you

Because of the wide-ranging importance and nature of the discipline, geographers and planners are keenly sought after to work in a variety of exciting fields, in both the public and private sectors. Careers for graduates include:

  • environmental consultants
  • geographical information system (GIS) officers
  • local government planners
  • hydrologists
  • educators
  • community development agents
  • policy advisers.

A career in Geography and Planning

Graduate with expertise in geography and/or planning strong demand in a multitude of private and public sector business settings. Undertaking study in either field will open the door to career opportunities in small business, government and the corporate sector, in Australia and overseas.

PhD student
Sanaz Alian, Master of Urban and Regional Planning

In terms of my degree, the design of the course was well thought through. It has a variety of units, ranging from demographic units through to urban design, and everything in between.

Graduate
Steve Conn, Graduate Diploma in Urban and Regional Planning graduate

In practice, the ability to manage varying interests and influences into a workable solution is incredibly valuable in the professional world.

Development Planner
Phoebe Wilkinson

The diversity of the course makes you a well-rounded town planner. I really love how regional focused the course is and I definitely think it’s the number one planning course in Australia.

The Australian Government’s Job Outlook website predicts ‘strong’ growth in highly skilled planning roles over the next five years.

A five-star experience

Teaching Quality
Teaching Quality NSW
Good Universities Guide 2021
#1 in Australia Postgraduate Teaching Quality
Postgraduate Teaching Quality
Good Universities Guide 2021
Student Support
Undergraduate Student Support
Good Universities Guide 2021
Overall Experience
Overall Experience
Good Universities Guide 2021

Browse other disciplines within Earth and Environment

What happens next?

laptop icon
1. Decide on your course

Got any questions about a course you would like to study? Don’t hesitate to contact us, our Future Student team is standing by to help.

pencil icon
2. Apply

2021 applications are now open. The application process only takes 20 minutes to complete. Don’t delay, apply now!

form icon
3. Receive an offer, enrol and start studying

Your start date is based on the study period you choose to apply for.