Master of Urban Planning Waivers & Credits

In exceptional circumstances, students may receive waivers for core requirements. It is also possible to receive credit for courses taken prior to MUP program under a few limited circumstances.

Waivers for Core Courses

Students may seek a waiver for one or more core courses when they believe they have taken an equivalent course elsewhere. A waiver excuses students from a particular core course, but it must be replaced by another course in order to meet graduation requirements for credit hours. Students are still required to earn 64 credit hours (or 60 plus an internship).

An application for a core course waiver should be submitted directly to the instructor of the core course. The application should include a petition, a syllabus and sample assignments from the prior course or courses, and transcripts to provide evidence of course completion. The course must be a graduate level offered by a comparably accredited institution, and the student must have received a grade of B or better. In some cases, the instructor might require you to pass an exam in order to obtain the waiver.

In cases where an instructor agrees to a waiver, the student must then obtain approval from the MUP Program Director, who may also ask to review the syllabus, materials and grade from the completed course.

Credit for Prior Courses

The Department does not grant credit for courses completed for a prior earned degree. Occasionally, the Department does grant credit for relevant courses that were in excess of prior degree requirements (e.g., if a student took 130 hours for a given degree, but only needed 120 hours to graduate), and for courses taken in graduate programs for which no degree was received. To qualify, the courses must be at a graduate level, or equivalent to at least DURP's 400-level courses, and their content must be highly relevant to the MUP degree. While it is technically possible for the Department to approve transfer credit for up to 32 hours from another PAB-accredited graduate planning program, as a general rule, transfer credit for more than 16 hours taken at another institution is rarely granted.

Applications for transfer course credit should be submitted to your academic adviser, and then approved by the MUP Program Director. It is the responsibility of the applicant to present a complete and persuasive application. At a minimum the application should include a syllabus and sample assignments from the course(s), as well as transcripts providing evidence of completion and grades. All courses must have been offered by a comparably accredited institution, and a grade of B or better must have been achieved.

Once the faculty adviser and MUP Program Director approves the credit, a Graduate College petition for transfer credit must be completed and approval from the Graduate College obtained.

Prior Course Credit for Students with BAUSP/BAUP Degree

Students with a bachelor's degree from DURP or an accredited planning program of another university may petition to waive up to a maximum of 16 hours of the MUP requirements, thereby reducing their credit hour requirements for the MUP to 48 hours (or 44 hours plus an internship). The courses representing the 16 hours must be graduate-level, i.e., 400-level UP electives or equivalents, and a grade of B or better must have been earned. Additionally, the student must take at least 30 hours of UP courses at Illinois.

Students should submit applications for course credit to their academic adviser, and subsequently to the MUP Program Director. It is the responsibility of the applicant to present a complete and persuasive application. Graduates of DURP's BAUSP/BAUP program need only provide evidence of completion of the relevant courses. Graduates of programs from other universities should submit a syllabus, sample assignments, and transcrips. If the Department approves the credit, a petition to the Graduate College must be completed and Graduate College approval obtained.

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