Urban Studies

What is a city? What can a city’s history tell us about its future? Who creates policies and laws? Do fictionalized cities in film and literature help shape our own ideas about urban societies?

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Undergraduate Programs

Urban Studies

USF’s Urban Studies program explores these and other questions by studying the city as an idea, process and living organism – with San Francisco as its guide. The interdisciplinary curriculum examines how a city’s planning, politics, economy, social classes and diverse populations impact the successes and failures of modern urban environments.

Graduates leave campus equipped with the knowledge, hands-on experience and communication skills necessary to kick-start their careers.

Career Paths


To major in Urban Studies, students must complete 44 units, including diverse and exciting courses centered around urban sociology and political economy, urban histories, theories and methods, urban planning and the built environment, or urban culture and representation. Students will also complete a capstone seminar and internship.

See our catalog for requirements & courses

The SF Advantage

San Francisco is itself an ideal city to immerse oneself in the study of urbanism. There are several institutional resources to help students discover more about San Francisco and conduct research related to cities.

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Contact Info

Department of Art + Architecture

Mon-Fri, 9a.m. - 5p.m.

Fromm Hall, XARTS 007 (415) 422-5685