urban science

Exploring the Science of Cities

You’re curious about the world around you, and you’re ready to gain the skills to address rapidly changing societal issues. Thanks to innovative courses curated across several disciplines, you will make an impact on some of our society’s most pressing concerns: social inequalities, economic instability and uneven access to resources. Most importantly, you’ll have opportunities to put  theory into practice. 

Marketable skills with Geographic Information Systems
Want to make a difference while gaining a rewarding career? Take advantage of coursework in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) offered as part of the Urban Science program. GIS uses computer tools to store, visualize, analyze, and interpret geographic data. GIS skills are in demand in nearly every industry, from governmental and non-profit organizations to Fortune 500 companies. It takes just one additional course to earn a GIS certificate along with your BS in Urban Science.

The Bachelor of Science degree in Urban Science is an interdisciplinary program that provides expertise in qualitative, quantitative, and geospatial methods to analyze social, political and built-environmental challenges facing cities and their metropolitan regions. This program prepares students for graduate study and work in public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Graduates are equipped with the technical skills and theoretical knowledge to create policy and implement change in their communities. Graduates are prepared to address societal problems stemming from social and spatial inequality; uneven access; unsustainable development; and rapid political, economic, and environmental changes.

Program Goals
Students of urban science at the University of Michigan-Flint will develop their ability to analyze complex urban processes and environments and use a tool-kit of research methods that will enable them to critically evaluate urban problems and contribute to problem solving. Students who graduate with a degree in urban science from UM-Flint should understand:

  • Interdisciplinary perspectives: Urban science examines the “science of cities” from interdisciplinary perspectives. It brings distinct disciplines together to create a coherent understanding of the processes that shape and sustain cities through space and time. The field of urban science critically examines diverse social, political, and built environmental patterns through the lenses of theory, planning and policy, and analytics.
  • Research methods: As an interdisciplinary field, urban science relies on theoretical constructs and an array of research methods to analyze empirical evidence in order to increase our understanding of urban systems. Urban scientists are interested in co-producing knowledge with scientific communities and diverse publics. The methods used by urban scientists are qualitative and quantitative, and include, geographic information systems, policy analysis, statistics, and ethnography.
  • Equity and engagement: Urban Science at UM-Flint is committed to scientific inquiry that supports the public good. The practice of urban science focuses on problem solving that promotes equitable and sustainable urban systems, and fosters collaboration with local communities.

Academic Advising
At UM-Flint, we are proud to have many dedicated advisors who are the experts students can rely upon to help guide their educational journey. Explore all the possible pathways for your future, and find the advisor that is right for you by booking an appointment today.

Career Advising
College of Arts & Sciences can help you define a clear path for your career. For career advising and coaching, please contact Myesha Cannon to schedule your appointment.

Bachelor’s Degrees

Urban Science Catalog Description
Earning a degree in urban science prepares students for graduate study and work in public, private and nonprofit sectors. Learn more about the core curriculum of this academic program.