Warning! This degree has changed. Read the transition arrangements.

Warning! This is a restricted degree. Subject enrolment is only available to students admitted into this degree.

Degree structure

Degree details

Students will achieve the following outcomes from the graduate certificate:

  1. identify and apply the principles, theories and concepts of urban and regional planning and draw upon appropriate knowledge of social, economic and environmental factors within a governance framework to practise planning, particularly in the Western Australian context;
  2. examine and challenge theories and practices of urban and regional planning, and generate creative solutions to planning issues
  3. access, evaluate and synthesise information in the context of urban and regional planning
  4. communicate effectively in writing, graphically, and orally with various audiences within a university context
  5. use appropriate technologies to gather and interpret research and data
  6. engage in self education within the Urban and Regional Planning profession to continue self development
  7. compare and contrast developmental processes in local and international contexts
  8. work ethically as individuals and in teams using skills central to the practice of integrated planning development

A career in planning can lead to a number of different opportunities in both the public and private sectors. For a long time, local government, specifically in Regional Australia has suffered from a lack of professionally trained planners.

The list of career opportunities includes (but is not limited to):

  • Local government planner
  • State government planner
  • Private planning consultant
  • Researcher or Academic
  • Development company
  • Regional development authority
  • Housing or transport agency
  • Environmental authority
  • Commonwealth Agency

An economic downturn is not likely to limit the need for employment of planners. In these times emphasis in the planning arena is much more focused on the provision of housing (affordable) and other welfare and social concerns.

Professional recognition

The Graduate Certificate in Development Planning carries no professional recognition, but provides a pathway to the Master of Urban and Regional Planning which is fully accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia (PIA), the national professional body for planners. The PIA body establishes and maintains national standards for the education and skill development of planners entering into the planning profession. Curtin University has taught planning programs for over 50 years at both undergraduate and post graduate level.

Graduates from Curtin's Master of Urban and Regional Planning are eligible for full membership of PIA.

Higher education

The Graduate Certificate in Development Planning degree has two entrance pathways:


Applicants require an undergraduate degree from a recognised tertiary institution.


Work experience

Entry may be granted to applicants who do not have an academic qualification but who can demonstrate through professional work experience their capacity to successfully undertake this degree. Entry to the Master of Urban and Regional Planning for students without undergraduate qualifications is via this degree.

English Proficiency Requirements

Applicants need to meet Curtin’s English Language requirement as all degrees are taught in English. If your education degrees were not solely in English, as per the International Handbook of Universities or the World Higher Education database, please attach a scanned original copy of English Proficiency Test results. Admission requires an overall International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic) (or equivalent test) score of at least 6.5 and competence in all test components (IELTS score of 6.0).

Please refer to the 'Minimum English Entry Requirements' document at http://students.curtin.edu.au/local/docs/English_List.pdf.

*** Please Note: If any academic or legal document is not in English, you must provide a colour scan of the non-English documents, including a colour scan of the official English translations of these documents. This is for comparison purposes. ***

Credit for Recognised Learning (CRL) is assessed on individual merit and is awarded for different types of learning, for example, studies you have previously completed or for relevant work experience.

Students must be admitted in an award degree of study before lodging their completed CRL application, along with all required supporting documentation for a formal assessment.

To apply for CRL, please visit the Curtin University website: https://study.curtin.edu.au/credit/apply

It is important to note accepted documentation includes scans of the original Transcripts and/or Award Certificate; front and back; in colour; and original size. For further information see the scanned documents and certification requirements and guidelines.

More information about the policies and procedures related to CRL assessment and appealing a CRL assessment outcome can be found in the Credit for Recognised Learning manual (PDF).

If you have any questions, please contact opencurtin@curtin.edu.au

This degree provides an introduction to the planning principles, practices and techniques used by urban and regional planners. Examples and applications draw on local, national and international examples. It can be seen as a stand-alone qualification in its own right, or as the first step towards the Master of Urban and Regional Planning, which is a full professional qualification. It can also provide mid-career training for practising planners. A distinguishing characteristic of the degree is the use of interdisciplinary knowledge and techniques in addressing environmental, social and design issues of concern to the community. It is now widely accepted that successful human settlements must be properly planned and a range of statutory and non-statutory controls exist at all levels of government to protect the public interest in the development process.

The Graduate Certificate in Development Planning offers an alternative pathway into the Master of Urban and Regional Planning for those from a non-related discipline or with only industry experience.

Recommended Study Pattern

See the suggested study plans for full time and part time study below.

Graduate Certificate in Development Planning suggested full time study plans

Graduate Certificate in Development Planning suggested part time study plans

For students enrolled in the Graduate Certificate of Development Planning prior to Study Period 1 2017, please see the Transition Arrangements section.

Award Requirements

To qualify for the award of Graduate Certificate in Development Planning, students must complete 100 credit points:

  • 4 Core subjects
  • Students must complete the award within 5 years.

In 2017 this degree underwent a major degree review. If you were enrolled in the Graduate Certificate of Development Planning prior to 2017, please contact Curtin University to discuss your study plan DBEOUA@curtin.edu.au.