Graduate Minor in City and Regional Planning

Master's students from any discipline at Cornell (except current M.R.P. students) are invited to enroll in the graduate minor in city and regional planning. The minor gives students across the university the opportunity to take advantage of the wide variety of classes offered by the Department of City and Regional Planning.

Upon successful completion of the required classes, the graduate minor will appear on the students' official Cornell transcript.


  • The minor is fulfilled with a minimum of four classes, totaling a minimum of 12 credit hours.
  • Students take two required classes and two electives (at the 5000 level or higher).
  • A minimum 3.0 GPA is required in the coursework completed for the minor.
  • Students must have a member from the Graduate Field of City and Regional Planning faculty appointed as a minor member of their committee.

Required Coursework

Interested students have two required classes:

  • CRP 5130 Introduction to Planning Practice and HistoryIntroductory graduate seminar on the theory and history of planning, administration, and related public intervention in urban affairs. Topics are analyzed from the perspective of the political economy of the growth and development of cities. Students improve their understanding of the planning process and of the urban application of the social sciences, get practice in writing, and explore one research topic in depth.
  • CRP 5190 Urban Theory and Spatial DevelopmentThis course explores the rich legacy of urban physical planning and design, examining both the reification of human values in the built environment and the shaping of society and culture by the places we have envisioned, planned and built. A spectrum of forces and agents—economic, political, religious, technological—will be analyzed to understand their impact on the spatial form of cities and regions. Themes include the origins of urban settlements; humanism, utopianism and the quest for the "ideal city"; the dialectics of modernity and tradition; power and the grassroots; the role of transportation technology; the spatial dynamics of race and class; and the urban crisis, "white flight" and suburbanization. The course concludes with an analysis of contemporary urbanism and an assessment of the renewal of city life in an age of unprecedented global urbanization, peak oil and light speed flows of ideas and information.

Elective Coursework

Students select two additional city and regional planning classes at the 5000 level or higher. Note: Class enrollment subject to prerequisites. The director of graduate studies approves all students' programs of study and can disqualify any class or accept other classes as electives. Class availability changes each semester. Students may not use independent study credit to satisfy this requirement.

How to Apply

Students interested in pursuing the minor should contact the academic programs coordinator in the Department of City and Regional Planning, 106 Sibley Hall, at or (607) 255-6848.