LUP-20306 Planning and Research Methods


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Individual Paper1
Group work4
Course coordinator(s)dr. ir. WGM van der Knaap
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. WGM van der Knaap
prof. dr. MM Bakker
Examiner(s)dr. ir. WGM van der Knaap

Language of instruction:



This practical course is an in-depth planning methodology course, focusing at planning and research methods to support operational planning problems at local scale level. Students gain knowledge and skills with applying various methods for qualitative and quantitative analysis of land use and landscape assessment, including bio-physical and environmental aspects as well as socio-economic aspects. The course familiarizes the students with concepts for structuring spatial related data, its analysis and spatial coherence, participatory approaches and a variety of assessment techniques. The methods will be applied in several case studies and landscape transformations related to agriculture, nature, recreation and tourism, mobility and network infrastructure, spatial-environmental conflicts and demography. Students are expected to reflect on the methods presented in the course, in order to improve their skills in distinguishing and selecting the appropriate methods in a given planning context.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- compare different planning methods;
compare different quantitative and qualitative research methods;
- assess advantages and disadvantages of planning methods;
- distinguish and select planning methods in the context of a planning task on the local scale;
- analyse the spatial distribution and properties of landscapes, as a result of landscape transformation processes at the local scale;
- explain the relationships between research and planning methods;
- recognize the role of different maps;
- apply statistical knowledge for landscape, land use and spatial analysis;
- presentation skills.


- lectures;
- practical exercises;
- writing short reports.


The student will be assessed on the basis of the following separate parts:
- his/her participation during the introductions and practical exercises and the completion of the exercises (either group work or individual work) (25%);
- an individual reflection paper about the separate methods and techniques applied and studied during the course; these have to be related to a specific planning process (25%);
- an individual written examination about the planning and research methods (including the applied statistical part) (50%).
Each of the assessments parts (a-c) should be passed separately (i.e. score at least 5.50). More detailled information will be provided in the course guide.


Special written reader + additional literature.

Compulsory for: BLPLandscape Architecture and PlanningBScB: Spatial Planning6WD
Compulsory for: WURDPBSc Minor Regional Development and Planning6WD
WUSPABSc Minor Spatial Planning6WD