MSc Transport Planning with Placement Year

Why choose Herts?

  • Industry-informed teaching: explore current developments in the field to ensure you develop the essential skills to meet the needs of employers and respond to challenges both now and in the future
  • Online software and research expertise: take advantage of access to specialist online software, including NVivo and SPSS, and Geographical Information Systems (GIS), as well as the University of Hertfordshire’s expertise in the Smart Mobility Unit
  • Specialised pathways: the course gives you the opportunity to explore a range of specialised modules and pathways, including a placement year and advanced research route

Funding available*


Work placements offered

Professional Accreditations

Accreditation is currently being sought from the Transport Planning Professional (TPP) bodies, including:

  • Transport Planning Society (TPS)
  • Chartered Institute of Highways and Transport (CIHT)

The course is designed to satisfy the requirements of the accrediting bodies.

About the course

The MSc Transport Planning with Placement Year will provide you with both the theoretical grounding and practical skills that you’ll need to satisfy the requirements of employers both now and in the future.

Driven by the demand for the delivery of zero carbon interventions, poor air quality and wider social exclusion problems, there is an increasing demand for highly skilled and multi-disciplined professionals within transport planning. 

The climate change imperative has shaken central and local government. It has caused authorities to declare climate emergencies and seek practical solutions to these new and important challenges.

Many have introduced transport policies and invested significant funding for transport programmes. They’re also rethinking how transport is delivered to include projects focussed specifically on achieving zero carbon and intelligent transport networks.

So, whether you have an interest in transport planning, or if you’re a professional who wants to gain a transport planning qualification, it’s an exciting time to explore transport planning and discover the impact you can have on communities for years to come.

You’ll also have the opportunity to explore a range of specialised modules, pathways and learning outcomes.

Find out more about the MSc Transport Planning.

Find out more about the MSc Transport Planning (with Advanced Research).

If you have any questions about the course, please email Ms Sue Walsh.

Why choose this course?

You’ll develop a broad knowledge base and understanding of transport provision in relation to planning and place making, environmental climate change and its mitigation, and designing transport systems to support sustainable economic development.

You’ll be equipped with the knowledge to address the current challenges within the field. You’ll future-proof your knowledge. The course is delivered within an overarching framework which focuses on key issues within the transport sector ensuring you are able to future-proof your knowledge and career. Current topics which the course addresses include:

  • decarbonisation
  • place-making
  • operational transport planning
  • transport and behavioural change
  • travel planning
  • transport data modelling and analysis.

You’ll have access to the expertise of staff based within the University’s Smart Mobility Unit (SMU). You’ll actively engage with the research activities and meetings of the SMU including engaging with the wider activities of the SMU’s industry collaborators and partners. The areas of interest of the SMU, include:

  • travel planning
  • change Management
  • transport-related behaviour change
  • intelligent transport systems
  • operational transport planning
  • smart ticketing
  • automatic number place recognition (ANPR)
  • big data analysis
  • spatial mapping.

Throughout the course, you’ll also have access to specialist online software, including NVivo and SPSS, and Geographical Information Systems (GIS). You’ll also have the opportunity to go on field trips  e.g., the European Planning Transport Practice module includes a 6 day trip to Europe to explore transport planning systems of European cities. There are also a number of field trips within various modules, including Operational Transport Planning and Community Engagement in the Planning Process.

What will I study?

This course is offered full-time only as a semester A September intake for two years.

The majority of teaching is delivered through lectures, workshops, field trips and master classes. You’ll be assessed through a variety of methods, including:

  • oral presentations
  • reflective journals
  • written reports and essays.
  • You’ll explore a range of exciting and current topics within the field. Core modules on the course, include:
  • European Planning and Transport Practice
  • Understanding and Managing Change
  • Sustainable Energy
  • Transport Policy, Strategy and Law
  • Community Engagement and the Planning Process.

The course content aims to equip you with highly desirable skills and knowledge, including:

  • a detailed knowledge of transport policy and the administrative frameworks within which transport schemes are developed, assessed, financed, monitored and reviewed
  • an understanding of the framework of laws, regulations and guidance in which transport planners work
  • skills for collecting, collating, analysing and interpreting the types of data used in the development and assessment of transport policies, plans, projects and services
  • knowledge and understanding relating to the principles of community involvement, stakeholder engagement and public consultation in the identification of transport needs and the development of transport policies, plans, projects and services (including alternative approaches and their relative effectiveness)
  • an understanding of the operational management of commercial and public transport systems and services using real world examples.

You’ll also have the opportunity to explore an area of transport planning which is of personal interest by undertaking an Extended Research Project. You’ll be supported by an experienced dissertation supervisor based within the Geography, Environment & Planning subject group. The Extended Research Project is an individual in-depth research project that will critically explore a relevant transport related topic in a research and/or professional setting. The aim of the project is for you to develop detailed knowledge and greater understanding of how planning issues are researched, monitored, and evaluated.

Throughout your learning journey, you’ll be supported by a team of dedicated professionals. You’ll be given a personal tutor for academic and pastoral support, as well as guidance from a programme leader to help you navigate the course structure and content. You’ll also have the opportunity to become a part of vibrant, student community and be entitled to join the GEPSoc (Geography, Environment and Planning Student Society).

Find out more about GEPSoc (Geography, Environment and Planning Student Society).

  • Level 7
    Module Credits Compulsory/optional
    Place-making and Spatial Mediation 15 Credits Compulsory
    Research Methods 15 Credits Compulsory
    Sustainable Energy 15 Credits Compulsory
    Study Skills 0 Credits Compulsory
    Understanding and Managing Change 15 Credits Compulsory
    Operational Transport Planning 15 Credits Compulsory
    Transport Policy, Strategy and Law 15 Credits Compulsory
    Transport, Development and Viability 15 Credits Compulsory
    Research Project Transport Planning 45 Credits Compulsory
    European Planning and Transport Practice 15 Credits Compulsory
    Transport Data Collection and Analysis 15 Credits Compulsory
    Work Placement 0 Credits Compulsory
  • Key staff

    Mr Andrew Smith

    Find out more about Mr Andrew Smith

    Dr Darren Crook

    Find out more about Dr Darren Crook

    Mr Jamie Cecil

    Professor John Sturzaker

    Find out more about Professor John Sturzaker

    Dr Keith Bevis

    Find out more about Dr Keith Bevis

    Dr Maurizio Catulli

    Find out more about Dr Maurizio Catulli

    Dr Scott Copsey

    Find out more about Dr Scott Copsey

    Visiting Professor Stephen Joseph

    Ms Sue Walsh
    Programme Leader and Admissions Tutor

    Associate Professor Susan Parham

    Find out more about Associate Professor Susan Parham

    Further course information

    Course fact sheets
    MSc Transport Planning Download
    Programme specifications
    MSc Transport Planning Download
    Additional information

    Sandwich placement or study abroad year


    Applications open to international and EU students


    The industry is desperately short of transport planners, especially those who have the energy and drive to take on the environmental challenges and enable technological changes to progress us to a sustainable future … The new Transport Planning masters is an ideal route into the transport sector and there are huge opportunities in a massively diverse range of areas and interests, from global policy to autonomous drone freight solutions.

    Graduate MSc in Sustainable Planning with Transport

    Employed as a Local Plan and Strategic Development Assistant Manager of WSP (Transport Consultancy)

    Student experience

    At the University of Hertfordshire, we want to make sure your time studying with us is as stress-free and rewarding as possible. We offer a range of support services including; student wellbeing, academic support, accommodation and childcare to ensure that you make the most of your time at Herts and can focus on studying and having fun.

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