To answer some of the questions you may have about being a Degree student at the Royal School of Needlework, take a look through the following Frequently Asked Questions. If you have a specific question that are not covered below please contact us.

Visiting the RSN

Can I visit the RSN?
Yes, you are most welcome, but we do need to ask you to book first. Please see the Open Day section of the website for booking details.

I can’t make it to an Open Day, can I still apply for the course?
Yes. All applicants are offered the opportunity to tour the RSN Degree facilities at interview and we interview all applicants. We interview both onsite and online.

Studying with us

Can I study the Degree part-time?
At this point, the degree is only offered on a full-time basis. However, you can study with the RSN as a day-class student or study the Certificate and Diploma in Technical Hand Embroidery with more flexible attendance modes. For more information visit Other RSN Courses.

How many hours a week do I have to attend?
This is a full-time degree course and due to the specialist nature of the practice we encourage 4 days a week attendance for all taught sessions. Workshops, demonstrations and lectures require full attendance but there will be the opportunity for study visits and independent / directed study.

What is my final qualification?
Our graduates are awarded the qualification – BA (Hons) Hand Embroidery, which is validated by Kingston School of Art, Kingston University.

What are the catering facilities at the RSN?
There are catering facilities available in the grounds of HCP via public cafe and restaurant facilities. East Molesey has a vibrant cafe community over the bridge – a short walk from the Palace.


Kingston School of Art, Kingston University (KU)

How often do students attend KU?
RSN students attend KU for an induction to learning resources. We encourage collaborative projects with other KU degree students as appropriate

Can RSN students use the KU Library?
Yes – this is a fundamental part of the learning resources available to you.


International students

Can International Students apply?
Yes, we welcome applications from international students. The Royal School of Needlework is a Highly Trusted Sponsor of the UK Visa and Immigration agency. We have been awarded the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) recognition for its BA (Hons) Hand Embroidery. This recognition of the RSN’s higher education provision now opens up the RSN degree course to applications from international students.

What are the English language requirements?
To study at the Royal School of Needlework, we require evidence of your English language ability to meet the requirements for the course.

For further information on our English language requirements click here.

Please see the Kingston University website for more in-depth information with regard to your application.

Accommodation & travel

Do you have Halls of Residence?
As a Kingston University/RSN student, you are eligible to apply for a room in Kingston University Halls of Residence. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee you room in Halls, so it is important that you enquire as soon as you have accepted your place on the course. Please see the Kingston University Accommodation page for further information.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact the Accommodation Team.

If I am not in Halls – where do students live?
Most students choose to live in and around the East Molesey / Kingston / Surbiton area in private rented accommodation, which is on a regular bus and train route. We do not hold a list of private accommodation that is approved by the RSN.

What is travel like to Hampton Court Palace?
As a major tourist attraction, there are frequent public transport routes to Hampton Court Palace. Overground trains run every half an hour from Waterloo / Vauxhall / Clapham Junction. Buses to and from Kingston are every few minutes. There is an excellent cycle route from Kingston along the river. Please see the location section of our website for more travel information.

Fees & funding

How much are tuition fees for UK/EU students?
Tuition fees for UK/EU students are currently set at £9250 per year Click here for more details.

All RSN Degree students are required to pay a Studio Fee in years one and two. This is a great way of helping you to learn to use the specialist materials for technical stitch without having to source them yourself. All technical hand embroidery modules are core modules. The studio fees are published annually for new and returning students. You will be expected to fund costs for other specialist materials for your practice and theory units / trips and visits during the course. Costs for this will vary according to project and subject and Kingston University have included the following information here.

Where can I get support for funding?
There is a range of financial support and funding available from both Kingston University and the Government to assist you with your study expenses. If you have any queries regarding tuition fees, please contact the Student Financial Advice and Help team

Does the RSN offer Bursaries?
Thanks to generous supporters each year the Royal School of Needlework is able to make bursary awards to some of its Degree Programme students. In the five years the Degree has been running 73 awards have been made to 50 students amounting to over £90,000. The most common award is £1000.


What qualifications do I need to apply?
All applications to courses are assessed against the course entry requirements and criteria, irrespective of age.

If you are an International student applying, please see our typical entry requirements for your country.

Your interview

What happens at interview?
All applicants to the RSN Degree course are interviewed with their portfolio of current work. You will be toured around the degree rooms at Hampton Court Palace and you will have an opportunity to ask questions about your study.

What should my portfolio contain?
Your portfolio should be a compilation of your best work and include drawing and design development from your own original ideas including sketchbooks, practical samples and finished pieces.  These may include hand embroidery but this is not essential if you have not had the opportunity to study specific techniques in depth. Please include a copy of one of your essays or pieces of written work.

Supporting your learning

How do I declare an additional support need?
Kingston University offer a range of support, including Academic Support, and well as Disability and Mental Health Support. Further information can be found here.

What about funding for my additional support needs?
In many cases UK students applying for higher education courses may be able to apply for the Disabled Students Allowance. Students applying for further education courses may have their needs assessed at the University and we will in turn provide support where possible, using funding from the either the Young Persons Learning Agency (if you are under 19) or the Skills Funding Agency (19-24).

Coronavirus Information

Coronavirus (COVID-19) — Information for students and visitors

External information: Coronavirus (COVID-19): Government response.

Last update: Thursday 11 August 2022. This page will be updated as and when information or policy changes. Please check back for updates.

The Royal School of Needlework is now operating normally again in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. This page is still available for historic information only. Thank you.

Founded in 1872, the Royal School of Needlework is a charity (no. 312774) and our mission is to ensure the future of hand embroidery through teaching, practising and promoting the art and techniques of hand embroidery to the highest standard.

It has been a difficult few years for everyone — personally and for businesses and organisations. As a charity, the Royal School of Needlework is particularly reliant on our customers to help us support our Tutors, students, staff and our future. We thank you for your continued support.

RSN Courses Update

This section outlines the current situation with each RSN course.