Royal College of Art

Royal College of Art 

Applications for the RCA’s September 2020 are now open. Visit on this date for up-to-date programme and application information.

The World’s No. 1 University of Art & Design
The Royal College of Art has been at the forefront of innovation and growth for almost two centuries – anticipating societal challenges and delivering real-world impact. Our learning environment remains unique, combining practice-based research with user-centred design traditions, specialist research centres, knowledge exchange and innovation training. The RCA is wholly postgraduate, offering Graduate Diploma, MA, MRes, MPhil and PhD degrees. Based around the four Schools of Architecture, Arts & Humanities, Communication and Design, the range of disciplines on offer is supported by a strong foundation of practice-based research, knowledge exchange and innovation.

Established in 1837, the Royal College of Art is the world’s oldest art and design university in continuous operation. With a unique balance of tradition and future-facing invention, of history and contemporaneity, the RCA has nurtured some of the greatest creative talents of the last two centuries and continues to be an inspirational factory of ideas for art and innovation. In 2019, the RCA was ranked as the number one Art and Design university in the world – for the fifth consecutive year – by the QS World University Subject Rankings. Fashion at the Royal College of Art’s has also been awarded Best Overall standing in the Business of Fashion, Best Fashion Schools in the World report (Graduate - Fashion Design category), June 2019.

The Royal College of Art is unique in the world: a specialist postgraduate art and design university with global influence – a powerful combination of creativity and innovation.’
Sir Jony Ive KBE
RCA Chancellor and Chief Design Officer, Apple

Our RCA Academic Offer
Asking critical questions with creative perspective and intellectual rigour is a foundation of the RCA education. Between engineering, design, the arts and humanities, our educational offer is reviewed annually, to ensure that we equip students to address global challenges, whether in healthcare, mobility or designing the fabric of our cities.

RCA Research
The RCA has a strong research, knowledge exchange and innovation culture, and creative collaborations with key partners provide industry-specific experience that is mutually beneficial. Research centres provide a focus for discrete design research areas.

The RCA London Location 
The RCA plays a central role in the creative landscape of London. Our London campus is spread throughout the heart of one of the world’s most creative cities, with sites in the historic surroundings of Kensington, the future-thinking hub of White City and the cultural quarter in Battersea. Surrounded by some of the most important cultural institutions – from the BBC to the V&A, the Serpentine Gallery and the Natural History Museum – and leading creative spaces, inspiration is just outside the studio doors. 

The RCA Community 
The RCA is exceptionally diverse, with students from 74 countries coming together to form a student body that reflects the cultural mix of this world-leading city. A concentrated community of over 2,300 students is supported by more than 1,000 full- and part-time staff, most of whom are also practitioners in their field. 

Watch our Graduate Show Showreel

Open Days
Future open days and evenings will occur in January and February 2020. Find out more and register for updates when booking open.

The RCA  has a reputation as a catalyst for cultural change, providing a springboard for some of the most influential architects, ceramicists, designers, painters and sculptors of the last century. We are immensely proud of our students and our alumni, who include creative giants from Henry Moore to David Hockney, Bridget Riley and Chris Ofili, from James Dyson, Thomas Heatherwick and Zandra Rhodes to Clare Waight Keller, Christopher Bailey and David Adjaye. The RCA’s cultural impact has always been, and continues to be, significant.

Our graduates can be found working in world-leading organistaion in the creative, cultural and public sectors; industries as broad as technology, finance, media and architecture as well as education. Many graduates open their own businesses, studios and practices, often in partnership with their classmates, and with the assistance of InnovationRCA, our centre for enterprise, entrepreneurship & intellectual property commercialisation. 

Short Courses
The RCA also offers a range of executive education and summer school short courses for those wishing to sample the RCA experience and enhance their practical skills and creative thinking.

Summer School
Summer School courses in 2020 will be announced in December, 2019. Find out more.

Executive Education Courses
Service Design Masterclass 25–26 November 2019
Creative Leadership 28–29 November 2019

Contact Details
Contact telephone: 020 7590 4444
Contact Email:


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