Master of Social Science (Environment and Planning)


  • Program code: MC072
  • GD125, GC078, Graduate Diploma in Environment and Planning and Graduate Certificate in Environment and Planning

  • CRICOS code: 029759C
  • Campus: City campus

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Information for international applicants

Please note: this program is no longer offered to commencing students; it has been replaced with Master of Urban Planning and Environment.

The multidisciplinary areas of planning and environment tackle the big contemporary problems confronting urban, regional and rural environments.

The Master of Social Science (Environment and Planning) combines contemporary planning and environmental theory with a practical problem-solving approach. It integrates theoretical concepts with contemporary issues and professional situations.

With a focus on policy and management, this program is geared towards graduates wanting to make a positive contribution to planning and the environment and seeking a more rewarding and challenging career.

The program has two streams: environment and planning. You may choose one stream or a combination of courses from both streams. You also have the opportunity to select electives from outside the program.


1.5 years full-time or 3 years part-time (on-campus and off-campus)

The Master program incorporates the Graduate Diploma: 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time and Graduate Certificate: 6 months full-time or 1 year part-time.

Weekly class format (generally in the evening).

Distance mode (delivery by printed study materials or online).

Short programs and intensive full-day workshops.

International student visa holders can only study full-time.

Program structure and features

Specialised streams

Planning stream

Explore the following areas:

  • New statutory planning techniques
  • Planning and environmental law
  • Strategic planning
  • Sustainable city planning
  • Planning history and theory
  • Public policy development
  • Rural and regional planning
  • a range of courses examining current planning issues.

Environment stream

Explore the following areas:

  • Natural resource policy and management
  • The concept of sustainability, globalisation and environmental policy at international, national, state and local levels
  • Environmental management in industry
  • Environmental effects statements
  • Energy management
  • Parks policy and management
  • Water policy
  • business-related environmental courses.

Learning and teaching

RMIT offers a variety of learning and teaching approaches including lectures, seminars, studios, workshops, presentations, group discussions and syndicate work. These are primarily in English.

You will have access to the Learning Hub and other online and digital resources through the myRMIT student portal.

Ongoing assessment throughout the semester includes examinations, essays, reports, oral classes, presentations, group projects, research projects, laboratory projects and practical assignments.

Program structure

The Master of Social Science (Environment and Planning) program includes Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma levels. You can also enrol directly into these intermediate awards.

The program offers 2 streams - environment and planning. Follow a stream by selecting all courses within that designation or, alternatively, select from a combination of streams.

The Graduate Certificate requires you to complete a minimum of 24 credit points from the core course list and a further 24 credit points from the elective and core lists.

The Graduate Diploma requires you to complete a minimum of 36 credit points from the core course list and a further 60 credit points from the elective and core lists.

The Master requires you to complete a minimum of 36 credit points from the core course list and a further 108 credit points from the elective and core lists. In addition, a wide range of electives are available from other postgraduate programs.

Handbook (program guide)

To see what students are currently studying and to access additional program and course information, visit the program handbook (program guide).

Industry connections

RMIT University is committed to providing you with an education that strongly links formal learning with professional or vocational practice.


Career opportunities include:

  • councils
  • strategic and statutory planning
  • environmental and social planning
  • state government planning and policy agencies
  • infrastructure providers
  • environmental and natural resource agencies
  • Commonwealth environmental and infrastructure agencies
  • international and local consulting firms
  • local government
  • conservation, environmental and community sectors
  • business and industry.

As this is a large career-oriented program, with many students enrolled who are already working in the area, you'll be able to develop professionally through shared knowledge and networks and find related employment after, or even before, graduating.

Professional recognition and accreditation

The planning stream of the Masters program is accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia for students who complete 4 planning core courses and 4 planning electives.

The environment stream is recognised as a means of entry to the Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand.

Entry requirements

Program entry requirements

An Australian undergraduate degree or its equivalent. Applicants with significant work experience may also be considered.



Selection tasks


English language requirements:

To study this program you will need to complete one of the following English proficiency tests:

  • Academic IELTS (minimum scores) overall band of 6.5 with no individual band below 6.0
  • TOEFL (Paper-based): minimum score of 580 (with a Test of Written English (TWE) score of 4.5)
  • TOEFL (Internet-based): minimum score of 92 with a minimum of 20 in each section
  • Cambridge English (Advanced CAE): CAE Grade B
  • Pearson: Minimum score of 58 (no band less than 50).

For detailed information on English language requirements and other proficiency tests recognised by RMIT, visit English language requirements.

Don't meet the English language test scores? Complete an Advanced Plus Certificate at RMIT English Worldwide.

How to apply

1. Check program entry requirements and confirm you're eligible.

2. Ensure you have your supporting documents ready - this includes certified copies of all academic transcripts.

3. Complete and submit your application using 1 of the following options:

There are no application deadlines for international students; however, we encourage you to apply early as acceptance into programs is subject to the availability of places. An application fee may apply.

Learn more about the International application process.


View tuition fees for international students.

Other fees

Additional expenses

View the schedule of program fees for international students.


Learn more about pathways or if you are eligible for credit transfer and recognition of prior learning.

Owning school

Global, Urban & Social Studies

Contact details

For further information about this program, please make an enquiry.

Browse international student brochures.


Although RMIT endeavours to ensure the accuracy of this information, there is no guarantee it will remain accurate all year. Applicants are advised to confirm program details with the appropriate school before making an application.