Urban Studies Certificate
[ Logo Image: Old map of Planet Earth fading into images of 
California State University, Long Beach ]
      Department of Geography
College of Liberal Arts
1250 Bellflower Boulevard
California State University
Long Beach, CA 90840-1101 USA

Certificate in Urban Studies

(code GEOGCT02) (120 units)


Dr. James R. Curtis

Associate Director
Dr. Dmitrii Sidorov

Undergraduate Advisors
Dr. Paul Laris
Dr. Deborah Thien


The Urban and Regional Studies Program housed in the Department of Geography ffers an education in the analysis of urban patterns, processes, and issues, and serves as an excellent supplement to standard degree programs. It offers essential training for those seeking both private sector and public sector careers or graduate study in fields concerned with the urban region, its development, characteristics, problems, and special communities.

Because urban issues cut across a variety of disciplines, the program takes an interdisciplinary approach. Each student participates in a small core of courses in Geography and Political Science but also assembles a distinctive mix of related courses from a variety of departments. The result is a customized program that provides essential information about the dynamics, form, and characteristics of urban regions while allowing a student to design an individualized program of study.

If you are already a regularly matriculating student working on your bachelor's or master's degree, you need to consult with the director of the Urban Studies Certificate program and then with the undergraduate advisor in Geography early enough in the program to receive appropriate advising and guidance. You must then file a Major Change/Declaration form with Enrollment Services indicating the Certificate in Urban and Regional Studies along with your major field of study.

If you already hold the bachelor's degree and would like to come back to earn the certificate, you need to apply for admission to the University as a postbaccalaureate student pursuing a certificate. You can apply online at http://www.csumentor.edu. Once admitted, you should seek advising from our undergraduate advisor and certificate program director to make the most effective use of your time.


  1. A bachelor's degree, which may be earned concurrently.
  2. Consultation with the undergraduate advisor in Geography and, preferably, also with the director of the Urban and Regional Studies certificate program
  3. 24 units distributed as follows:

    Core requirements:

    • U/ST 301i (same as GEOG 301i) -- The Urban Scene
    • GEOG 466 -- Urban Geography: Principles"
    • GEOG 467 -- Urban Geography: Metropolitan Problems, or POLS 327 -- Urban Politics

    Elective Courses, 15 units, to be selected from the following:

    • AIS 319 -- The Ethnic Experience in the U.S. (same as ASAM 319, B/ST 319, CHLS 319, W/ST 319)
    • ANTH 416 -- Urban Anthropology
    • ASAM 345 -- Asian American Community Analysis
    • BIOL 303i -- Coastal Systems and Human Impacts (same as GEOL 303i)
    • B/ST 335 -- Economic Development in the Black Community
    • B/ST 452 -- Ecology of Black Crime
    • DESN 367 -- History and Theory of Architecture
    • CAFF 322 -- Family Housing and the Urban Community
    • CAFF 422 -- Housing Policies: Public and Private
    • CAFF 428 -- International Housing
    • GEOG 446 -- Land Use Planning (same as U/ST 446)
    • HIST 468 -- Local History: Communities
    • HIST 469 -- Ethnic Groups in Urban America: An Historical Examination
    • HIST 474I -- The Urbanization of Modern America
    • POSC 327 -- Urban Politics
    • W/ST 432 - Women in the City




For more information, please contact:

The Urban Studies Director, Dr. James Curtis:

[ photograph of Dr. Curtis ]
Geography undergraduate advisor, Dr. Paul Laris:

[ photograph of Dr. Laris ]
Geography undergraduate advisor, Dr. Deborah Thien:

[ photograph of Dr. Thien ]

Department of Geography/1250 Bellflower Blvd./California State University/Long Beach, CA 90840-1101

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This document is maintained by: Dr. Rodrigue
Last Updated: 08/15/08