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UPPP 292A Urban Planning Professional Report - 2019-20: Hints about Assignments

To support culminating project/thesis

General Hints

  1. study issue contextually
  2. consider who the client is - do research on the client as well as the topic
  3. use specific geography for local basis - may occasionally be too restrictive and you will have to apply the context to local situation
  4. consider how you are going to describe content - with data, spatial analysis, GIS, mapping, images, via interviews, etc.  You may have to obtain permissions for some information so plan accordingly.
  5. cite literature liberally and consistently using a format that supports many kinds information - ie) APA, etc. - the 2010 edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association is at all Reference Desks at BF 76.7 P83 2010
  6. consider using some method of bibliographic management software (BMS) for organizing citations and references, creating other options for organizing images and being able to easily generate footnotes, and bibliographies according to specific bibliographic formats and styles
  7. activate & regenerate your UCI photo ID which now serves as a copy card so that you can print and copy at any of the Libraries or IT centers on campus - prices may vary for different functions from site to site
  8. think about ways to present your information



Specific hints to support individual topics

Highly encourage everyone to use the Urban Planning & Public Policy (UP3) Research Guide where many resources are annotated and for which there are links.  These hints will get you started with databases and a proposed research strategy.  Please contact a librarian for additional assistance.   However what will refine your searches to a higher level of relevancy is the specific location or geography you are focusing on, and the populations you want to serve - the elderly, etc; and the conditions you are most interested in.  What is the problem you are addressing - a specific issue will beg for specific coverage.

  1. Transportation - covered in many different databases.  Some are highly specialized by type of transportation and others are more policy or science driven.  They include:  ASCE Library for content from Civil Engineering & the Compendex Database for all coverage of Engineering.  Also can search Scopus and Web of Science Databases.  The highly specialized databases are TRID and Transport and they cover the TRB publications and global coverage.

  2. Student housing insecurity - related to the literature on safety you will find a lot of information the higher education literature in ERIC, Chronicle of Higher Education, Education Fulltext; and the business/policy issues covered in Business Source Complete, PAIS, Google Scholar.  Social wellbeing will also be addressed by PsycINFO and other social sciences coverage.  It also depends where the campus is - in an urban area, what kind of students are you trying to place undergraduates, graduate students, veterans, families, international students, etc?

  3. Women and housing/homeless issues - the Sociological literature covered in Sociological Abstracts, Web of Science, and the gender literature via GenderWatch.  Many government sources from local, regional, state and federal agencies will document this condition.  The social science literature including books and theses/dissertations chronicle such themes well.

  4. Stormwater management - search the Agricultural & Environmental Sciences Database; Compendex; ASCE Library

  5. Urban Water access/quality - Agricultural & Environmental Sciences Database - includes Water Resources Abstracts; the IWA database of major journals in water; again it depends on the specific geography for government documents; mapping sources may be important

  6. Watershed management - many of the same sources noted in #4 & 5

  7. Public land / open space mitigation - Urban Studies Abstracts; Lincoln Library resources; Newspapers; legal sources may be of interest; land use and zoning - depends on geography

  8. Street vendors/ undocumented person labor issues - state law and municipal codes will inform some of this; legal databases such as Hein Online (law reviews); WestlawNext, (case law), Legal Source (secondary content), Nexis Uni, Foreign Law Guide, and social sciences databases such as Web of Science, Sociological Abstracts, etc. Jurisdiction will determine options too. 

  9. Zoning regulations/reform - many legal sources - depend on geography, jurisdiction and problem statement.

Outline of Professional Report

Make sure that your final draft contains the following components:

  1. Title page
  2. Table of Contents
  3. List of Tables and Figures
  4. Executive Summary
  5. Introduction
  6. Research Question or Problem Statement, Significance and Objectives
  7. Background or Literature Review
  8. Main body of report including appropriate subsections, data & methods, analysis & findings
  9. Planning Recommendations
  10. Conclusion
  11. References
  12. Appendices (as needed)

Liaison Librarian

Julia Gelfand's picture
Julia Gelfand
Office: Science Library 228

Phone: 949-824-4971


Citation Styles & Writing Guides

You will want to make sure that your final paper complies with a standard citation style.  Most Social Ecology submissions are made following APA format.  Please practice consistency and consult appropriate resources listed below.  See Citation Management Guide