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Thread: University of British Columbia

  1. #1
    Member
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    hi

    I was wondering if anyone could post the rankings by planetizen here or email them to me?

    omer.aijazi@utoronto.ca

    I am interested in finding uout where Canadian schools such as UBC stand on these rankings. I have been hearing all sorts of things about the planning school at UBC!!

    Also could someone explain to me how urban planning can be linked to international development?

    thanks

    oh and how is the planning program at UBC anyways? I have a business undergrad and have zero introduction with planning. I am looking for a broad program where I can bring in stuff like international development, public finance etc etc
    Last edited by Gedunker; 09 May 2008 at 4:02 PM. Reason: sequential replies

  2. #2
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    Hi there,

    just came across your posting. I am currently in the M.A planning program at UBC. The program is first class has internationally recognized planning academics. UBC is known abroad and I have no hesitations in recommending it. The link between international development and planning is made at UBC. there is a comparative development stream in the program that focuses on int. dev.

    Being accepted into the program is a different ball game. The competition is extreme with an average of 200 plus applicants each year. The admission average is around a "A" and most people in my year had planning related experience before starting the program. My recommendation to you is to gain experience and then apply, permitting your grades are high enough.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
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    hi

    luckily i got in! I got accepted pretty early (in march) and in the comparative development field.

    I just want to make sure that this is a worth going place. I am up against schools in the U.S but most of them are turning out to be way too expensive for me.

    My worries are that I intend to work overseas (in third world places) or move onto my Phd... just wante to make sure UBC will do the trick

  4. #4
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    vancouver, BC, Canada
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    Hey!

    Congrats! It is quit the accomplishment to be accepted to UBC planning. I know i was thrilled when i got the news!

    Emailing the proff of that stream would probably be best. I am not in that stream but I believe Micheal Leaf is the person to talk to. But that stream, to my understanding, has limited amount of courses you can take. That said, the school does branch out to many international communities to do planning. For example, many students are going to the Philippines this summer and some to Brazil.

    I hope this helps.

  5. #5
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    I know this is an old thread, but I am a student at UBC and feel I can offer some good advice.

    The UBC program has many strengths and weaknesses. The strengths include the wide variety of course options available, the excellent (even famous) faculty, the hard-working yet laid back and social student body. I believe it is also a strength that the program is a generalist planning degree rather than a specialist city planning degree. This is not to say that students of UBC cannot be urban planners in the truest sense, but rather that other options are open as well (e.g. disaster management, health system planning, community economic development, comparative/international development, transportation planning, urban design, and urban development planning). UBC arguably has the toughest admission standards and the best reputation in Canada. Clearly, Toronto and McGill are also top tier programs in Canadian and international contexts, but the UBC program holds a certain clout due to the wide-spread praise of Vancouverism and the faculty linkages to this movement. And let me ask you whether you would rather live in Vancouver, Toronto or Montreal? For me, the answer is clearly Vancouver #1, Montreal #2 and Toronto #3 but you can make your own mind up on that on that. Location is a factor.

    There are also weaknesses. I am 1.5 years into the program and will be graduating this summer, so my opinions are based on real experiences. I have found that the programs lacks severely in its delivery of "hard skills." There is a lot of great theory, reading, writing, group exercises, etc. This makes for a great academic experience which would undoubtedly be advantageous for those considering the Ph.D route. However, I feel the program could be more heavily grounded in real-world experiences and interactions with the potential employers, especially for the Masters program. How can the program be considered a "professional degree" if there is no requirement for professional experience? I should admit, the program does allow students to engage in up to 6 credits of internship work, but this is not a requirement and little effort is made to link students with industry. I should also mention that the program is very timing consuming. In fact, I would argue that the program is more time consuming than it is analytically challenging. In other words, I am not certain that the output in time is always well spent as I often feel as though I am doing busy work, especially in the urban design classes and classes requiring participatory/group work.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian
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    Thanks for replying to this entry, I didn't know this thread existed and I applied to UBC because it's one of the few schools with a disaster planning track. I'll keep this in mind if I get in, it's good to hear first hand experiences with programs.

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