Anyone can call themselves a ‘designer’ and indeed many do and within their number the competence levels range from excellent to abysmal. So just calling yourself a designer doesn’t give employers or clients any information as to how you practice or how competent you are. Viewing a portfolio is of course an essential part of the decision making in terms of engaging a designer but the designer still needs to get that portfolio in front of the person.
Being ‘a Chartered Designer’ as opposed to just being ‘a designer’ gives employers and clients the confidence from the start that your competence and professional practice has been benchmarked, reviewed and recognised by the only chartered professional body for designers across all disciplines.
The credibility of the status therefore relies on a robust and rigorous benchmarking process and the Pathway to Chartered Designer process has been designed to ensure this outcome. It therefore requires applicants to make a comprehensive submission of their career to date, how they work and the design work they deliver.
This will take time and effort and cannot be rushed and so the first thing you need to do is set up your user account which will allow you to complete the Pathway at your own pace.
Becoming a Chartered Designer and maintaining the status involves three costs:
The Application, Pathway Portfolio and Professional Review fee is initially set at £240.
Full Members and Fellows of CSD benefit from a CPSK cost exemption reducing the application cost to:
£80 for Members (MCSD) and £60 for Fellows (FCSD).
All successful applicants will be required to pay a one-off registration fee of £100.
The annual fee to maintain Chartered Designer status will be £295 and includes:
• use of the registered title ‘Chartered Designer’ after your name or affix
• a personal annual audit of The Register requirements
• listing on The Register of Chartered Designers
• annual certificate
• full membership of the Chartered Society of Designers (currently £225)
• all benefits and services afforded to CSD members, and
• use of the authorised abbreviation MCSD.