USC Price School of Public Policy

MPL Comprehensive Exam

MPL Comprehensive Examination

Successful completion of a comprehensive written and oral project-oriented examination is required of all students seeking the Master of Planning degree. The examination is project-oriented and emphasizes the analysis and solution of a real-world planning problem. Students are expected to synthesize knowledge and skills drawn from both the core courses and electives in their concentration. The exam is designed to serve students in each of the program’s concentrations, and students must declare their concentration in advance of their candidacy for the exam.

The comprehensive examination is normally given in the spring semester of each year. Students usually take the examination in the last semester of their second year. A faculty committee appointed by the dean administers the examination. Examinations are graded on an honors/pass/fail basis. Students who are not successful on the comprehensive examination may retake it once, within one year of the first exam.

2010 Comprehensive Exam Prize Winners for Outstanding Achievement

  • Tushar Dutta – Sustainable Land Use Planning
  • Jennifer Longabaugh – Sustainable Land Use Planning
  • Giao Luong – Social and Community Planning
  • Sarah Molina – Preservation and Design of the Built Environment
  • Sen Sugano – Economic Development
  • Joe Walcek – Transportation and Infrastructure Planning

2009 Comprehensive Exam Prize Winners for Outstanding Achievement

  • Robert Baird – Sustainable Land Use Planning
  • Evan Corey – Sustainable Land Use Planning
  • Ana De Santiago Ayon – Social and Community Planning
  • Katie Heasley – Preservation and Design of the Built Environment
  • Jeffrey Jacobberger – Transportation and Infrastructure Planning
  • Kyung Mi Park – Preservation and Design of the Built Environment
  • Luz Reyes – Economic Development

2008 Comprehensive Exam Prize Winners for Outstanding Achievement

  • Nathasha Behbahany – Land Use Planning
  • Derek Braun – Economic Development
  • Jela Ellefson – Transportation
  • Tamara Gishri – Economic Development
  • Zerik Scales – Preservation and Design of the Built Environment
  • Thomas Yee – Social and Community Planning