Taught course

Chartered Town Planner Apprenticeships

London South Bank University · Architecture and Design

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Entry requirements

  • A Level BCC;
  • BTEC National Diploma MMM;
  • Access to HE qualifications with 9 Distinctions and 36 Merits or;
  • Equivalent Level 3 qualifications worth 106 UCAS points or;
  • Level 3 Planning Technician Apprenticeship.
  • Applicants must hold 5 GCSEs A-C including Maths and English, or equivalent (reformed GCSEs grade 4 or above).

Months of entry


Course content

Shaping places

Did you know that LSBU town planning graduates work all over the UK and internationally in both the public and private sectors? We have been educating British town planners on accredited Royal Town Planning Institute courses for over 50 years, and boast three contemporary Presidents of the RTPI among our alumni.

Our three courses will equip you with the technical and managerial know-how to be an effective town planner and prepare you to be a life-long learner, so that you may develop a successful career and rise through the ranks of your profession.

Town planning is a challenging and rewarding career. It is aimed at improving the places in which we live, work and play. It is about visioning the future and using the tools that your professional and vocational training gives you to realise and sustain that vision. It is dynamic, reacting to changes in society, the environment and political and legal frameworks in which people live their lives and development takes place.

It is not about telling people what their future environment will be like, but is about working with a wide range of stakeholders to bring diverse ideas, wants and needs together. Your people skills will be as important as your technical knowledge; town planning is a test of your all round abilities and gives you a deeply satisfying career.

The courses are fully accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute. This means that after graduation you can become a licentiate member of the RTPI. With two years relevant work experience (in some cases one year), you can apply to take the RTPI Assessment of Professional Competence exam and become a full member of the RTPI.


You can enter the Degree Apprenticeship Chartered Town Planner at either Level 4 or Level 7. There are two courses at Level 7 including one specialising in urban design. See Modules for more information.

The Level 4 entry course lasts for 60 months taking you from first year undergraduate to Postgraduate level. The End Point Assessment must be completed within a year of completing the taught elements.

The Level 7 entry course lasts for 24 months and includes a formal dissertation or writing up of a major student-led project. The End Point Assessment must be completed within a year of completing the taught elements.

By the time you have successfully completed the taught elements and the End Point Assessment you will either be awarded the PG Diploma Chartered Town Planner (Level 4 Entry), the MA Chartered Town Planner or MA Chartered Town Planner (Urban Design) and you will be eligible for membership of the RTPI.

Advanced entry requirements are possible, but not normal. Those who seek this should first approach the course director of their preferred course.


There are two types of modules on this apprenticeship:

1. Taught, classroom-based modules, taught in semesters. Students will study these on a day release basis. These modules are shared with the BA (Hons) Urban and Environmental Planning, MA Town and Country Planning and/or MA Urban Design and Planning.

2. Planning Practice Modules, which involves guided, work-based learning, where students get three touch points during the year:

  • Beginning (September) - briefing and planning;
  • Middle (January) - formative feedback and workshops; and
  • End (June /July) - to provide assessment guidance.

Staff will act as tutors to students on the Planning Practice Modules, being available by email and phone and face-to-face meetings as requested.

However, students will also have a work-based mentor whose job it will be to support and guide the student as they identify, gather and analyse information. This is a key structural difference to the non-apprenticeship degree programmes and firmly sets the Degree Apprenticeships Chartered Town Planner apart from these.

In the Planning Practice Modules, the emphasis is on learning at and from the work place. It is here where many of the skills and behaviours, that the Town Planner must develop, are best observed, analysed and developed. These modules will be supported via LSBU's Virtual Learning Environment, Moodle, and clear guidance will be given to the work-based mentor. The student will be required to log their work on the University’s e-portfolio, One File.

Level 4 Entry PG DIP Chartered Town Planner

Level 4
  • Making Sustainable Places
  • Planning History and Principles
  • Development Management
  • Plans, People and Processes
  • PPM 1: The Professional Planning Environment
  • PPM 2: Interpersonal Skills and Professional Behaviours
Level 5
  • Environmental Change: Issue and Impacts
  • Strategies, Visions and Design
  • Planning for Housing
  • Local Economic Development
  • PPM 3: Plantech
  • PPM 4: Community Engagement and Participation
Level 6
  • Evidence Based Planning
  • Real Estate Valuation
  • International Planning Perspectives
  • Cities and Representations
  • PPM 5: Planning Practice Project (double module)
Level 7
  • Planning, Politics and Theory
  • The Making of Place
  • Specialism – one from:
    • Housing and Regeneration
    • Sustainable Infrastructure and Mobilities
    • Urban Design Project
  • Planning Law in Practice
  • PPM 6 Learning from Best Practice in Spatial Planning
  • PPM 7: Professional Profile

Level 7 Entry: MA Chartered Town Planner

  • Planning, Politics and Theory
  • The Making of Place
  • Specialism – one from:
    • Housing and Regeneration
    • Sustainable Infrastructure and Mobilities
    • Urban Design Project
  • Planning Law in Practice
  • PPM 6 Learning from Best Practice in Spatial Planning
  • PPM 7: Professional Profile
  • Dissertation

Level 7 Entry: MA Chartered Town Planner (Urban Design)

  • Planning, Politics and Theory
  • The Making of Place
  • Urban Design Project
  • Design and Property Development
  • PPM 6 Learning from Best Practice in Spatial Planning
  • PPM 7: Professional Profile
  • Dissertation

A town planner’s role is to help stakeholders create a vision for what a place (city, town, village or countryside) may look like in the future, and then to manage and facilitate the design, development and conservation processes that enable this be put into practice.

Typically, a town planner will be involved in four key aspects of such place shaping. These all require stakeholder engagement including local communities, developers, infrastructure providers (e.g. highways authorities, electricity, gas, water), county, district and unitary authorities, government agencies (e.g. Natural England, English Heritage). The four main areas are:

  • Policy and plan making including the collection and analysis of data and researched material, visioning and the management of the plan through the statutory processes of consultation, adoption and implementation.
  • Development control, including the validation of planning applications, advice to the applicant, assessment of the application against the local plan and planning laws and regulations, the awarding or not of planning permission, preparation and appearance at planning inquiries, and potential taking an application through judicial review. This also includes negotiation of agreements between developers and the local planning authority to secure such non-commercial resources such as social housing, doctor’s and schools premises, road improvements and leisure facilities.
  • Enforcement which includes using an array of notices to stop development, remove unlawful development and to ensure development meets the terms of the permissions granted. Such enforcement may mean engaging with the courts and judicial system.
  • Conservation and management of heritage and countryside resources by working with resource owners, consulting on applications and help in negotiating management agreements, licenses and grant applications.

As a town planner, you will be engaging with a broad range of stakeholders and seeking often multiple outcomes for development schemes. You will use a range of skills and abilities you to play your role in shaping the places in which we work, live and take our leisure. These include negotiation, seeking compromise, making recommendations, enabling others to achieve their aims, communicating complex ideas and concepts to non-specialists, working within the law, and making ethical decisions.

Fees and funding

The cost of the apprenticeship is paid fully by the employer (sometimes part funded by the government) through apprenticeship levy. The apprenticeship levy is a pot of money some companies pay into, which all businesses have access to spend on the training costs of apprenticeships. Companies fall into two categories: levy-payers (who pay into the pot) and non-levy payers (who do not). You can find out more in our Levy and Funding section, specifically for employers

The apprentice does not contribute toward the cost of study.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • Apprenticeship
    part time
    24-60 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

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