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Thread: LSE master's urban planning

  1. #1
    Cyburbian
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    LSE master's urban planning

    MSc regional & urban planning studies

    I got into this program, and it's great that it's only one year, but it's, well, in London... I'd love to move there, but I'm not sure accreditation works the same way as it would here in the states. Does anyone know anything about this program? Anything would be helpful, and I'm seriously thinking about going because the tuition is only about 15000 GBP (so about $23,000) for the one year. Having to deal with London's living costs might offset a lot of that advantage, though.

    (I can also answer questions about their application process, which was a little different from what we're used to.)

  2. #2
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    First of all, congratulations on getting accepted! I would be very interested in hearing about the application process if you'd be inclined to share.

    Thanks!
    Jolene

  3. #3
    Cyburbian
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    Oops, I didn't mean to make it sound mysterious. But it really was a little different because first of all, LSE uses rolling admissions and encourages students to apply as early as possible. If I recall correctly, the application for the following fall comes out in October, which is also when the university starts accepting applications for its many MSc programs. I didn't get mine in until January 27. I received e-mail notification of acceptance on February 16 -- very short response time. Initially I thought that I had gotten my application in way too late, nearly four months after they started accepting applications. So my advice is to not overthink the "when should I turn this in" bit? As far as I'm aware, the school is still taking applications for Fall 2010 right now, but I have no idea about how many spots have already been taken.

    As for the application itself, the first word that comes to mind is 'chill.' The application didn't require any formal documents like transcripts or GRE scores (in fact, the GRE itself is optional, but since I had taken it for schools here, I sent official scores anyway). They only required two recommendations, both of which were submitted online as well. And the essay they require didn't have any word limit. That said, I used the most concise essay I had before cutting sentences to fit specific word requirements got painful. I think that in the end my personal statement was about 1300 words or so, a bit longer than Harvard GSD allows. That's about it!

    I think the e-mail I received was the formal offer. They didn't mention that any paper package was forthcoming, but not much time has gone by (and packets could take a while to travel to California from London). The e-mail was very thorough about funding opportunities. There were a bunch of links that I've yet to really look through, as I'm still trying to find out more about the program! I'm trying to figure out what it means to get royal accreditation, find people who have gone through it, estimate how much it'll cost to live in London, etc.

    Hope this is helpful as far as the getting in part goes. Sorry this was a bit wordy.
    Last edited by judyblume; 19 Feb 2010 at 8:22 PM. Reason: typo

  4. #4
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by judyblume View post
    Oops, I didn't mean to make it sound mysterious. But it really was a little different because first of all, LSE uses rolling admissions and encourages students to apply as early as possible. If I recall correctly, the application for the following fall comes out in October, which is also when the university starts accepting applications for its many MSc programs. I didn't get mine in until January 27. I received e-mail notification of acceptance on February 16 -- very short response time. Initially I thought that I had gotten my application in way too late, nearly four months after they started accepting applications. So my advice is to not overthink the "when should I turn this in" bit? As far as I'm aware, the school is still taking applications for Fall 2010 right now, but I have no idea about how many spots have already been taken.

    As for the application itself, the first word that comes to mind is 'chill.' The application didn't require any formal documents like transcripts or GRE scores (in fact, the GRE itself is optional, but since I had taken it for schools here, I sent official scores anyway). They only required two recommendations, both of which were submitted online as well. And the essay they require didn't have any word limit. That said, I used the most concise essay I had before cutting sentences to fit specific word requirements got painful. I think that in the end my personal statement was about 1300 words or so, a bit longer than Harvard GSD allows. That's about it!

    I think the e-mail I received was the formal offer. They didn't mention that any paper package was forthcoming, but not much time has gone by (and packets could take a while to travel to California from London). The e-mail was very thorough about funding opportunities. There were a bunch of links that I've yet to really look through, as I'm still trying to find out more about the program! I'm trying to figure out what it means to get royal accreditation, find people who have gone through it, estimate how much it'll cost to live in London, etc.

    Hope this is helpful as far as the getting in part goes. Sorry this was a bit wordy.
    Congrats!

    I applied to the same program back in December, but I've been held up with one rec which I ended up manually mailing over. LSE is a great place.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
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    Thanks!

    Have you gone to visit the department by any chance? Or spoken to students who have gone through the program?

  6. #6
    Cyburbian planr's avatar
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    I have a friend who will be heading to LSE next year for the MSc in planning unless MIT gives him a better offer (e.g. acceptance). His plans post-grad school are definitely global in scope and all indications point to LSE being a great school to engage in research and applied projects in a wide variety of places.

    My friend pointed me to their apparently very active Facebook page - http://www.facebook.com/pages/London...app_2309869772

    That said, it seems to me that if you are worried about accreditation in the US, you are probably more interested in a domestic (public sector?) position as opposed to a post abroad working for NGOs or the private sector. If this is indeed the case, you may want to consider a US school that will give you more local context.

    At the end of the day, going to LSE is going to be a great decision for just about anyone, however it may not be the best for you specifically
    "Try to be in two incredibly successful bands. If not, that's okay." -- Words to live by, courtesy of Dave Grohl

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