Higher/Degree Apprenticeship Chartered Town Planner

CertHE Urban Planning Practice and MSc Urban Planning

Course code
Higher/Degree Apprenticeship
School of Architecture and Environment
Entry point 1 - Typically four years; entry point 2 - typically two years
Day release; September intake
Programme leader
Katie McClymont

Page last updated 1 March 2024


Accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI), our Chartered Town Planner apprenticeship gives you the Master's level expertise needed to become a Chartered Town Planner. Benefit from modern, well-equipped facilities on Frenchay Campus, guest speakers and residential trips.

Accreditations and partnerships:

Why study for a Chartered Town Planner Apprenticeship?

Accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI), the Chartered Town Planner Apprenticeship (Level 7) will enable you to progress your career in planning. Whether you're newly appointed or experienced in the planning industry, this apprenticeship is suitable for anyone working in planning, across the public, private or voluntary sectors. You'll gain the knowledge, skills and behaviours you need to become a qualified Chartered Town Planner.

The Chartered Town Planner Apprenticeship is built around two routes.

  • For those without a degree but with relevant Level 3 qualifications
  • For graduates from any academic background, although it's particularly attractive for those with a social sciences, geography or planning background. We take professional experience into account when appropriate.

Why UWE Bristol?

As an established provider, UWE Bristol has delivered high quality planning courses for over 40 years. We currently offer a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate planning courses in both face-to-face and online formats. Our offer is research-informed and delivered by a team with a mix of academic and professional experience, offering you the latest insight.

You'll be taught on Frenchay Campus with access to modern, well-equipped facilities. You'll benefit from guest speakers and a range of study experiences, including access to residential trips. As a member of a well-respected planning school, you'll also be able to experience a range of opportunities organised by our student society. These include talks and visits with employers and professional groups, such as the Royal Town Planning Institute and the Town and Country Planning Association.

Benefits to your employer

This apprenticeship provides you with the opportunity to upskill by gaining a recognised qualification while remaining in your current role, enabling your employer to retain your talent. As you gain experience, you'll be able to apply your new knowledge and skills directly to your workplace.

Once you qualify as a RTPI-accredited Chartered Town Planner, you'll be able to deliver a higher quality offer, allowing your employer to charge higher fees for your services.


After passing your studies and the necessary end-point assessment, you'll successfully complete your Chartered Town Planner apprenticeship. You'll achieve an MSc Urban Planning award satisfying the educational requirements of the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). At this stage, you'll be a chartered member of the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) and allowed to use the post-nominal letters MRTPI.

In addition to supporting your development in the workplace, this apprenticeship will help you understand the career landscape in your sector and plan for your longer-term ambitions. Our award-winning Careers Service is on hand to give you independent advice and guidance at any point in your studies.

Course details


The Charter Town Planner Apprenticeship takes four years from entry point one, and two years from entry point two. If you join at entry point one, you'll be with us for four years, studying on a day-release basis. After successfully completing two years, you'll be eligible to secure the CertHE in Urban Planning Practice that gives access to our MSc Urban Planning award, enabling you to satisfy the educational requirements of the RTPI.

Entry point one

Year one

  • Healthy Sustainable Communities
  • People and Planning
  • Professional Development and Practice.

Year two

  • Researching the City
  • Environmental Planning and Design
  • Independent Project.

Entry point two

Year one

  • Plan Making
  • Implementation and Design Quality.

Year two

  • History and Theory of Urban Planning
  • Dissertation
  • Agency Project (work-based learning).

Plus, optional modules in:

  • Transport Policy and Finance
  • Changing Travel Behaviour
  • Urban Design
  • Grassroots Planning
  • Healthy Cities
  • Major Project Studio.

Please note these modules are indicative and can vary. 

Learning and Teaching

This apprenticeship is built around class contact, with online webinars and tutorials being used in support. You'll learn through a mix of lectures, workshops and seminars. You'll be taught on Frenchay Campus with access to modern, well-equipped facilities.

When not studying at university, you'll learn through on-the-job training in your role.

See our glossary of teaching and learning terms

Study time

You'll be expected to attend for approximately six hours each week during term time. Outside of term time, you'll be expected to carry out guided reading, complete assessments and undertake course-based activities online.

You'll attend induction activities at the start of each academic year and attend regular one-hour meetings with academic staff and your employer.

We also expect you to allocate additional time per week to complete assessments and carry out directed reading.


You'll be assessed through a variety of methods including essays, reports, portfolios, research, individual and group presentations, and a structured programme of work experience.

Learn more about our assessments


Professional accreditation

Our Chartered Town Planner Degree (Level 7) Apprenticeship is accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI), with the MSc Urban Planning award satisfying the educational requirements of the RTPI. Those arriving via entry point one will take this award in years three and four. Those arriving at entry point two will study this award throughout their two years of study.

Whether you arrive through entry point one or two, you'll benefit from free student membership, providing you with a monthly magazine, online resources including research bulletins, and discounted entry to a range of events.


During year four, you'll complete the 'Agency Project', which is a six-week work placement either at your existing employer, or another organisation with your employer's permission.


There are a variety of field trip opportunities throughout the apprenticeship. 

If you arrive via entry point one, you'll be invited on a series of local trips in your first year.

You can also attend a residential trip in year two (non-compulsory), subject to employer approval and agreement funded by the College outside of apprenticeship funding.

In the first year of MSc Urban Planning, you'll benefit from a UK residential trip funded by the College. You can also choose to take an optional European trip in the second year of MSc Urban Planning which requires funding. This is subject to employer approval and agreement.

Study facilities

Throughout your apprenticeship, you'll have access to student support and modern facilities on Frenchay Campus, including computer laboratories equipped with the latest professional software, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS).  

You'll also have 24/7 access to IT support, whether you're on campus or at your workplace.

Find out more about our state-of-the-art facilities.


Health and Wellbeing

We provide support in the way you need it.


A stunning city for student living with all the qualities to make you want to stay.

Sports, societies and activities

There is more to your experience here than study. Choose to make the most of it and try new things.


It is embedded in our culture, teaching and research.

Campus and facilities

Discover our campuses and the wealth of facilities provided for our students.


Typical offers

Entry requirements

Entry Point one (four years)

  • Tariff points: 104
  • Contextual tariff: See our contextual offers page.
  • GCSE: Grade C/4 in English Literature or Language and Mathematics, or equivalent (we accept Functional Skills Level 2 in Maths and English).
  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: No specific subjects required. For information on required Guided Learning Hours please see our minimum entry requirements page.
  • Access: No specific subjects required.
  • Baccalaureate IB: No specific subjects required.
  • Irish Highers: No specific subjects required.
  • T Levels: No specific subjects required.

Entry Point two (two years)

We normally require an honours degree of 2.2 or above. This course is suitable for graduates of degrees from any academic background, particularly social sciences, geography and planning.

We can consider applicants who do not meet the normal entry requirements, but who do have relevant professional experience or qualifications. In your application, you should describe your professional experience and qualifications in detail.

ESFA eligibility requirements

To study an apprenticeship, you need to:

  • be aged 16 years or over
  • be an EEA citizen (with Right to Work in the UK) and not be in any other kind of full-time education (including being enrolled on any other apprenticeship programme)
  • be employed (for at least the full planned duration of your apprenticeship) in a role that is linked to the appropriate industry for the apprenticeship training
  • receive at least legal minimum wage for apprentices (wages vary depending on experience, employer and level or type of apprenticeship)
  • commit to at least 6 hours per week of apprenticeship training during your normal working hours
  • have support from your employer, including a mentor/line manager. Your employer is also responsible for funding your apprenticeship.

More information about eligibility for apprenticeship funding is available on the GOV.UK website.

How to apply


If you’re interested in applying and have the support from your employer, speak to your line manager and/or HR team in the first instance for approval. Your employer will contact us so we can send you an application link.


If you’re not employed, you can use the following tools to find an apprenticeship vacancy with an employer:

For more guidance on higher and degree apprenticeship applications.

For further information

For course-specific enquiries, please contact the Programme Leader.

For all other enquiries, please email our Apprenticeship Hub apprenticeships@uwe.ac.uk or call +44 (0)117 32 84888.

For further information about Higher and Degree Apprenticeships.