Jun 17, 2024  
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog 
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog

Urban and Community Design, M.U.C.D.

College of The Arts  
School of Architecture and Community Design 


The Urban and Community Design major at USF is a rigorous “design-based” course of study (i.e. post professional degree for design students) leading to the Master of Urban and Community Design (M.U.C.D.) degree. The major focuses on the myriad physical, functional, visual, social and sustainable circumstances in contemporary urban contexts and stresses the amassing of knowledge, and the acquisition of design, research, analytical and other practical skills. The instructional scope of the MUCD major is both broad and diverse. The major builds on previous studies in architecture or landscape architecture as the foundation for involving students in crafting design interventions across the varied spectrum of scales of urbanism – from the urban street and block, up to the metropolitan region. Support courses in the program’s curriculum infuse an understanding of the fundamentals of urban and community design, the historical and theoretical foundations of the discipline, the methods of research and analysis used in urban and community design, the major determinants of urban form, the evolution of urban contexts, and the different modes of contemporary urban design practice. The major invites applications from prospective students who are interested in expanding their understanding of the physical dimensions of urbanism and the morphology of urban places, and amassing the skills necessary in crafting compelling design interventions that address the human experience and physical conditions of cities, towns and communities.

Admission Information

Must meet University Admission and English Proficiency requirements, as well as requirements for admission to the major, listed below.

  • Professional undergraduate or graduate design degree (i.e. B.Arch., M.Arch., B.L.A., M.L.A.).
  • Portfolio of design and creative work (While work completed in a professional capacity is welcomed, academic work is preferred as the primary portfolio content).
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE preferred minimum score of 500 on verbal and 500 on quantitative sections. The GRE will only be waived for applicants who have already earned a Master’s degree).
  • Letter of intent
  • Three letters of recommendation (At least one letter must be from a former instructor or faculty member).

Curriculum Requirements

Total Minimum Hours - 36

  • Core – 15 Credit Hours
  • Additional Required Courses - 9 Credit Hours
  • Electives – 12 Credit Hours

The curriculum for the M.U.C.D. major is intended to be completed in one full calendar year – Fall, Spring and Summer semesters. Each semester includes a design studio and up to three lecture courses, totaling 15 credit hours (The length of time to complete all degree requirements depends on individual course load during each semester of enrollment).

Core Requirements (15 Credit Hours Minimum)

Additional Required Courses (9 Credit Hours)

Electives (12 Credit Hours)

Students select electives in consultation with faculty/academic advisor.  Students may select from the following Selected Topics courses, or other graduate course in related fields if approved by the advisor. 

Topics Include: 
•    The Real Estate Development Process (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Site/Context Analysis (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Global Urbanism NOW! (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Urban Design Drawing (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Urban Resiliency (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Sustainable City (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Streets & Blocks (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Design for Social Equity & Environment Justice (3 Credit Hours for this program)
•    Landscape and Urbanism (3 Credit Hours for this program)

Comprehensive Exam

The Comprehensive Exam is in the form of the Terminal Urban Design Project, which is displayed and presented (drawings, models, and other forms of representation as appropriate/required) are presented to faculty and a group of external reviewers.

Thesis/Non-Thesis (0 Credit Hours)

This major does not require a thesis.