Minor in Sustainable Urban Development

Portland State University

Date Posted: Feb. 25, 2016
Submitted by: Monika Urbanski
Sustainability Topic: Curriculum
Content Type: Academic Programs
Program Type: Minor
Distance: Local Only
Commitment: Full-Time


Interest in sustainability and urban development has steadily grown in recent years among students. Our urban region has attracted considerable national and international attention and been a center of activity and innovation in addressing the challenges of incorporating the principles of sustainability into its planning and professional practice. The minor in Sustainable Urban Development offers students the opportunity to focus their education on this important and growing field. The minor in Sustainable Urban Development will provide students with an opportunity to further their understanding in the important issues and challenges in making cities sustainable while providing a foundation for advancing their academic and professional interests in the numerous opportunities emerging in the field of planning and urban development. The School of Urban Studies and Planning is working with other academic units, including Environmental Sciences, Architecture, Geography, Economics and Civil Engineering to provide expanded curricular offerings in topics concerning sustainable urban development. This is the only undergraduate program offered in the Oregon University System with a specific focus on sustainable cities. The Minor includes a required foundational course that will provide an overview and introduction the important concepts and issues facing urban planning and efforts to make cities sustainable. In addition, students will be required to take 3 other courses that focus on the built environment, healthy cities and green economics. Students then will elect a series of other classes offered in the School of Urban Studies and Planning, Geography, and Environmental Sciences and Resources to expand their knowledge and focus attention on the specific fields that best complement their academic and professional interests. The Minor is a 27 credit-hour program. Students who complete the minor will understand the foundations of sustainability, including the 3 E's of environment, economies and equity as these domains of learning apply to the urban and built environment. In addition, students will develop literacy in the applications of these concepts to specific fields of urban planning and community development, including land use, transportation, urban environmental management, natural resource conservation and urban ecology.

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