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Master of City and Regional Planning

Master of City and Regional Planning (MCRP)

MCRP Students in Clemson.

The Master of City and Regional Planning (MCRP) requires a total of 48 credit hours are required for the MCRP degree. The two-year program contains a 29-credit core curriculum. The program also calls for 9-12 credits of elective courses in addition to 7-credits for a terminal project or 10-credits for a thesis. The core curriculum includes planning and substantive theory, analytical methods, implementation techniques and applications. Electives allow the student to develop further expertise. Upon the completion of coursework, an oral examination is required to present and defend the results of their terminal project or thesis.

Learn more about a Shared Degree with MCRP-MRED for those students interested in the integration of the planning, development and traffic/transportation engineering fields.

  • Overview
    A total of 48 credit hours are required for the MCRP degree. The two-year program contains a 29-credit core curriculum. The program also calls for 9-12 credits of elective courses in addition to 7-credits for a terminal project or 10-credits for a thesis. The core curriculum includes planning and substantive theory, analytical methods, implementation techniques and applications. 
  • Program Goals

    Accredited planning programs are required to provide information to the public on the performance of the program and its students. The MCRP Program meets that expectation and provides basic information about tuition, retention and graduation rates, AICP Exam pass rates, and student employment following graduation. Learn more about the MCRP program.

  • Admission Requirements

    Note to Applicants: With the current COVID-19 crisis and the challenges related to standardized exams, the Master in City and Regional Planning program will provide a GRE waiver for all Fall 2022 applicants.

    Candidates should initiate the admission process in the year prior to their enrollment. The University uses a rolling admission process that enables applications to be reviewed as they are received. Although the University uses a rolling admissions process, candidates are encouraged to apply by March 1st to receive priority consideration for a departmental assistantship. Typically, incoming graduate students in the City and Regional Planning program begin their studies during the fall semester. Admission for either Spring semester or part-time studies is possible, but is highly discouraged due to the sequential nature of the core curriculum.

    Students interested in the Masters of City and Regional Planning program should  contact us to arrange a visit. Please give at least one week notice so you may be able to meet with faculty and visit relevant classes. Visits are typically held on Tuesdays through Thursdays to accommodate the program’s class schedules, but visits on other days are possible as well. 

    Academic Standards

    Students come from a range of disciplines such as architecture, political science, sociology, civil engineering, urban affairs, economics, geography, environmental science, psychology, landscape architecture, business, history, English, and communications. The Nieri Family Department of Construction Science and Management has the same academic standards as the Graduate School.

    The department prefers that students achieve at least a 3.0 in their undergraduate studies. While the department does not have a minimal standard for acceptance with the GRE, the department sets a goal of prospective students achieving median scores on each section (151 in the Verbal, 149 in the Quantitative, and 4.0 in the Writing). International students are expected to have at least a 600/250/100 TOEFL score, in order to complement the GRE standards. On occasion, students who do not meet the minimum expectation in a given requirement have been admitted when they have demonstrated professional experience or exceptional capacity for the planning profession.

    Submission Requirements

    To apply to the Master of City and Regional Planning program at Clemson, please visit the Office of Graduate Admissions.

    Instructions for the online application are available at:

    Application deadline: March 1

    All application components are to be completed and submitted online to the Office of Graduate Admissions.  Required application materials are:

    1- Graduate Admissions online application
    2- Application fee
    3- Unofficial Transcripts*
    4- Three letters of recommendation - with at least one from a current or former professor
    5- Resume - containing a brief description of academic background and any relevant work experience
    6- Statement of purpose and personal narrative - Please include your interest in pursuing a graduate degree in City and Regional Planning, your preparation and aptitude for this field, your future career goals, and your interest in Clemson’s program. (no more than 1000 words)
    7- Test Scores: GRE** (Waived for Fall 2022) and TOEFL***  ETS institutional code 5111.

    GRE Fee Reduction Program: ETS provides program for individuals who can demonstrate financial need.

    *Official Transcripts are required if admission into the program is granted
    ** Prefer 151 Verbal, 149 Quantitative, 4.0 writing.
    ***International applicants only (Prefer 100/250/600)

    Please note that according to university policies, any and all application materials submitted to either the Graduate School or Department become property of Clemson University and are not returned.

    See The Graduate School for additional information.

    Questions may be directed to the departmental office. Although it is not a requirement, students are encouraged to visit the campus and meet with faculty and students in the department. 

    MCRP Program questions: Administrative Coordinator

    Nieri Family Department of Construction Science and Management
    3-113 Lee Hall, Box 340511
    Clemson University
    Clemson, SC 29634-0511
    Phone: 864-656-1527

  • Program Requirements

    Master of City Planning Curriculum (48 semester hours). See the course curriculum breakdown by semester.

    • Required Core Classes (29 hours):
      CRP 8010 – Planning Process and Legal Foundations (3)
      CRP 8020 – Place Making for the Built Environment (3)
      CRP 8040 – Intro to GIS for Planning (4)
      CRP 8041 – Intro to GIS Laboratory (0)
      CRP 8050 – Planning Theory and History (3)
      CRP 8060 – Urban and Global Economics for Planners (3)
      CRP 8070 – Professional Studio (4) with lab (0)
      CRP 8080 – Land Use and Comprehensive Planning (3)
      CRP 8090 – Contemporary Issues in Planning Seminar (2)
      CRP 8580  Mixed Methods for Planning Practice (3)
      CRP 8600 – Terminal Project or Thesis Proposal (2)

      Students are required to complete one of the following: (3 or 6 credits)
      CRP 8590 – Final Terminal Project (3)  -OR-
      CRP 8910 – Planning Thesis (6)

    Elective Courses (9-12 hours*)

    • Students choosing the non-thesis option are required to take 12 credit hours of elective courses.
    • Students are also required to take CRP 8590 TP in lieu of CRP 8910 Thesis.
    • Elective courses vary by semester.
    • All electives courses must be approved by an CRP advisor or Program Chair.


  • Financial Aid

    Many planning students receive financial aid during their two years of study. Upon applying, students are reviewed for a research assistantship on-campus. Receiving an assistantship provides graduate students with tuition reduction per semester and a stipend of approximately $3500. While all students are reviewed for assistantships, priority is given to students who apply by March 1st. First year students typically work as graduate assistants, although some first-year students opt to work off-campus as Public Service Assistants (PSA). Second-year students typically work off-campus for a planning-related agency as a PSA. However, a first year assistantship does not guarantee that a second year assistantship will be provided. Courses in MCRP are scheduled for three days a week to allow students the ability to work as Graduate Assistants and Public Service Assistants.

    Information on tuition costs and housing options.

    Departmental Graduate Assistantships

    Students must be enrolled for a minimum of 9 credit hours. Departmental Graduate Assistants are required to work a minimum of 10 hours per week for 15 weeks and a total of 150 hours per semester. A salary is provided, including a significant tuition reduction. These are typically for first year students with limited planning experience. These assistants are usually assigned to professors, the library, and the department for various tasks, including some research and technical planning tasks.

    Although Health Insurance is not part of Graduate Assistant package within MCRP program, the Graduate Student Government (GSG) supports health insurance coverage for Graduate Assistants (GA). If eligible, Graduate Assistants will receive a Student Insurance subsidy to help defray the cost of the Student Health Insurance Plan.

    Public Service Assistantships (PSA)

    A Public Service Assistantship is a form of work-study and requires a student to work outside the University for a planning-related agency or firm. A PSA entitles the student to a tuition reduction. A PSA also provides an hourly wage, although the rate will vary by entity. Students are required to work for the entity 15 hours a week for 15 weeks for a total of 225 hours per semester. The advantage of this form of financial aid is the practical professional experience gained in the process. Students may arrange to do their internship with the same employer while earning a summer salary. Public service assistants are able to show excellent work experience when applying for employment upon graduation. These positions typically require an automobile for transportation throughout the metro area up to a 60-mile radius.

    Research Assistantships

    Research Assistants are also available for students to participate with faculty members on funded research projects through the department. Placement is based on availability of funds and the related skills of the student.

    HUD Community Development Work Study Grant

    When funds are available from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, qualified income-eligible and minority students are eligible through the program to receive a two-year grant working at three local planning agencies during the school year and summer. Students receive a salary in addition to tuition reduction/reimbursement and reimbursements for other costs of study. This is a need-based grant and is awarded to the Program on a yearly basis through HUD in Washington D.C. Students are required to work 15 hours (two days) per week for 15 weeks per semester for a total of 225 hours of work. The Program Director and Program's HUD Program Administrator review applicants for potentially eligible students.

    South Carolina Graduate Incentive Fellowships

    Minority graduate students, especially from South Carolina, may receive up to $5,000 annually. Contact the Program Director for details:

    Other Financial Aid or Fellowships

    Additional funding is available for graduate students. Contact the Financial Aid Office at 864-656-2280 to learn more.

  • Tuition

    Cost and Tuition

    Low tuition costs and the moderate cost of living in the area make Clemson one of the most reasonable options for graduate students. Please refer to the following site for information on fees.

    Assistantships are available to graduate students in City and Regional Planning and are assigned primarily on the basis of academic performance. Prospective students must apply by March 1st to be considered for an assistantship position. While 1st-year graduate students typically work 10 hours a week for the department, 2nd-year students typically work 15 hours a week at a planning-related agency off-campus. 2nd-year assistants typically require an automobile for transportation to their position within the metro area. Assistants are paid bi-weekly for their work.

    Students on assistantships receive a tuition reduction depending on their position. Applicants should review the graduate school web page for any changes in tuition reduction.  While we understand the financial burden on students, full-time students (12 credit hours or more) are strongly encouraged not to work over 20 hours per week in all employment positions. We have found that excessive outside work can place excessive stress on students.

    Calculator for Tuition and Fees

    Living in Clemson

    Enjoy the sunny, four-season climate of Clemson that has long spring and fall seasons. Clemson is only 45 minutes away from the Blue Ridge Mountains and the City of Greenville. It is only 2 hours away from major metropolitan areas like Atlanta, GA and Charlotte, NC and is less than a 2-hour drive to Asheville, NC. Clemson’s location provides students with an array of housing locations and options. The cost of living in Clemson is substantially lower than most universities, making it an affordable graduate school option. General information about Clemson can be found at the university’s website and the Clemson Chamber of Commerce website.

  • Additional Resources

    Planning students live off-campus in private apartments in the surrounding area as University housing is typically not available to graduate students. Please visit the University Off-Campus Housing website for information on roommates, subletting, rental, and purchase a property. To further assist you in securing appropriate off-campus housing accommodations, a housing rental guide in the City of Clemson and the surrounding areas is also available through Tiger Properties. Additionally, there are many other housing and roommate search websites such as Rent College Pads ClemsonHotpads-ClemsonZillow-rent ClemsonApartmentfinder.

  • Learn More
    For more information regarding the program or questions associated with applying to this program, please contact at or 864-656-1527.
Graduate Program in City and Regional Planning
Graduate Program in City and Regional Planning | 3-109 Lee Hall, Box 340511 Clemson University Clemson, SC 29634-0511