Open Day: Goldsmiths

I visited Goldsmiths University today, which is located in New Cross, south-east London. I was interested in the BA Design course.


I was puzzled by a BA course in “Design”, initially. Design in which sector? It’s just too broad? I hoped to understand how Goldsmiths would tackle this, and I attended a morning talk on it.


  • They have an interdisciplinary (relating to more than one branch of knowledge) approach to Design
  • Adopt a practice in which “No design is just a method of action”, meaning an incredible amount of research, additional knowledge is needed before physical creation
  • Contextual studies
  • Technical studies
  • Professional placement, and students are required to do at least 6 weeks of it
  • Practice involves agility and being original
  • Dedicated studio space
  • Ranked first for employability in the Guardian
  • Graduates have worked for Nokia, Kin, Selfridges, Oxfam, Liberty


  • The open day was not well organised, so I am unsure whether there was a library even.
  • Unable to meet the students, or see a variety of their work
  • Only model-making/ architectural work was shown on the slides
  • Did not explain why applicants should go for a BA Design course rather than a specialist design route

I was not convinced to apply for this course, even when I knew Goldsmiths were in the top 10 in the league tables for Design. Perhaps it was because I could not understand why I should choose to study BA Design when specialist design courses are extremely sought after. I can only establish that maybe Goldsmiths value a very open-minded approach, and by placing the student amongst other design students, you can learn from eachother’s disciplines. I spoke to a tutor about this, who explained that the environment was very much like that. She said if I specialised in Textiles, then I can still pursue that on BA Design, as they don’t force you to try out different sectors, but you are encouraged to produce your own visionary, in a place of no restrictions, which you may find on a specialist course.

However I decided that I want to study on a specialist course, as I want my practice to be tailored specifically for project briefs or use in industry, and I find that kind of restriction beneficial over a course that’s too open in it’s approach. I also want to study alongside others who are studying the same course as me.



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