The Chartered Society of Designers Newsletter
Special Edition 2015
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‘Why is patience so important?’ Paulo Coelho rhetorically asked …
‘because it makes us pay attention’.

Nothing could be truer in terms of the Society’s new website which has taken over a year to complete.

No sooner had the project to develop a new website begun when the members voted at the 2014 AGM to expand the existing membership classes to include, those practicing in design related areas, who can now apply for Affiliate Membership (aCSDm) and Fellowship (aCSDf). The members also voted to introduce descriptors into their titles and at the same time the Society received a positive response to its call for expressions of interest in respect of Chartered Designer. These changes, together with amendments to the Society’s governance, were approved by the Privy Council at the start of this year and so it was decided to incorporate them into the new website.
At the same
time the Society was experiencing a surge in new applicants and decided to streamline the application process, especially for overseas candidates, without the process losing any of its rigour. Members were also telling us that they wanted a CPD programme, greater international involvement and at the same time there was an upsurge in interest as to our archive and heritage.
So the Society stood back, paid attention and rather than opt for a quick visual fix decided to be patient and deliver a website that gave existing and potential members what they were asking for and would facilitate a new way of working. What had started out in 2014 as a project to simply build a new informative website soon developed into a major project to deliver a fully interactive application process for both the existing and new membership categories plus an interactive ‘Pathway to Chartered Designer’.
The website has taken over a year to compile to ensure that not only the content is exciting and stimulating but that it is also capable of delivering the functionality required that will enhance the membership experience.
Visit the Website
So what does it provide that’s new?

Look and feel.
As soon as you open the home page you will see a difference. The new functions ensure the public, clients, students, designers, employers, design support and design related persons, are all able to engage with the Society wherever they are in the world. And for those who ask what does the Society do there are 25 purposes why we exist and why we are the professional body for designers across all disciplines.
If you need to employ a designer or commission design then you can Find-a-Designer.
This has been totally redeveloped to include a search engine producing random results for all of the new membership categories, levels of membership, by name and location with each result being expandable into the members own unique online portfolio.
If you’re a parent, student or teaching design then you can Find-a-Course.
A totally new function that will identify design courses by design discipline, location and how they are rated in the CSD Course Endorsement Programme.
A dedicated space for our members.
The ‘Members’ area provides a totally new experience for members from the moment you
login. Members can manage their own personal portfolio which allows them to upload images of case studies of their work. They are able to add their own contact details and links to websites or social media.
Their portfolio is linked directly to Find-a-Designer which will display the portfolio as a gallery of scrolling images to be browsed by potential clients and employers.
The area contains details of special offers for members which are continually being added. At the same
time they will receive details as to events and Society matters.
Perhaps the biggest innovation is that members will be able to use the interactive CPD function allowing them to record their CPD, whether self-directed or otherwise, plan future CPD and analyse it against CPSK the framework for professional design practice. All entries will be set out as a CPD record that can be used to support the Pathway to Chartered Designer.
Applying made easy but no less rigorous.
Anyone wishing to apply for any membership category within the Society is now able to do so online through a fully interactive process set out in three stages: Registration, Application and Ratification. Those seeking membership are able to set up their own user account and complete the application process at their leisure providing a personal profile, setting out how they practice and uploading their application case studies. They are able to review and edit any part of the process before making the final submission.
Guidance notes of the application requirements can be downloaded for each membership and there are helpful tooltips against all of the application when completing details. Throughout the
process applicants will receive online notifications of their progress as elements are reviewed.
Members upgrading from one membership level to the next are also able to do so through the online functionality.
Not just about awarding membership.
In the awards section of the website you can now find details of both current and past awards together with an archive of images. The section includes the CEP Awards (Course Endorsement Programme) which are announced each year and which offer a prize to one student from each of the courses in the programme. There is an archive that can be viewed year on year and each opens a gallery showing the students work.
Providing you with the Resources you need.
In the ‘Resources’ section of the 
site you will be able to visit the library and look through past copies of TheDesigner and OnCourse. Over the coming years the Society will be adding an archive of all its journals/magazines which date back to the 1940s.
There is also a section housing relevant design sector reports and information together with copies of the quarterly CSD Design Business Survey submitted to the Bank of England.
As a 
reminder you can complete this quarter’s survey.
Click here to complete the survey
Perhaps one of the most interesting sections of the website can be found in ‘Resources’ where the Society is gradually digitising and displaying its archive. The archive is extensive but thanks to the generosity of members and their families we are able to add to it with donations. You can currently see examples from the Stan Coates MCSD (1927-2008) archive of work which was recently donated to the Society. We will be building on this archive over the years and if you wish to donate to the archive we will be happy to hear from you.

Scroll down and reveal the CSD History
Displaying items from the archive is given meaning in the timeline that can be found in the ‘About’ pages of the website. This fascinating interactive history timeline from the formation of your Society in 1930 lists key events with related imagery and can be viewed decade by decade. An examination of the Society’s archives will provide much more data which will gradually be added to expand the timeline vertically with events and horizontally with archival evidence.
If you want to practice design professionally then CPSK rules
Over the years the CSD Genetic Matrixâ„¢ has come to be known as the framework upon which the Society relies to establish all of its memberships, accreditations and CPD requirements. It determines the benefits and services offered to members. At the same time is becoming recognised by others as a framework for professional development. The website now carries an info-graphic showing CPSK, CPSK+A which determines all of the membership categories requiring demonstrable achievement and CPSK+R which has been adopted by The Register of Chartered Designers to determine the award of Chartered Designer.
If you want to see what you need to do to demonstrate your
competences then you can download the specially prepared Guide to Demonstrating CPSK for applicants, upgrading members and those considering the Pathway to Chartered Designer.
We don’t work in isolation
By collaborating with
others the Society is able to offer support to its members on a wide range of issues. Our strategic involvement with others also allows us to provide the public benefit rightly demanded of a charity. On the ‘Partners’ page of the website we have not just displayed a series of logos but have also indicated our involvement and or relationship with those entities.
There are many other features of the website which will prove of interest to members so when you are finished reading TheDesigner visit

Don’t just try it - experience it!
A huge thank you to the team at Redwire Design
For many years applicants for membership of the Society have had to present and justify their portfolio to two or three assessors personally. It is a process that has won respect from applicants and time and time again we are told that this is what differentiates CSD from those organisations where simply making a payment is the only criteria for gaining membership.
However, with the development of new membership categories and the introduction of Chartered Designer, a growing number of designers, both in the UK and overseas are seeking membership across all design disciplines and especially those practicing both industrial and interior design.
For some time the Society has offered distance assessments for overseas applicants. The outcomes of these assessments have been monitored over the last couple of years in order to inform an overall review of the application process. In addition, data has been recorded as to all application outcomes following the introduction of the CSD Genetic Matrixâ„¢ in 2007 as the framework against which to make membership awards.
The Society has therefore reviewed this data in order to see how it might streamline the process whilst maintaining the integrity and rigour that applicants require and the sector acknowledges as important in maintaining the CSD membership brand.
Following successful trials over the past year the website introduces a new application model which is fully interactive and allows for applicants to upload all of their case study submission for review. The submissions will be reviewed by a greater number of assessors acting independently of each other and bench-marking the applicant against CPSK and providing a wider spectrum of opinion. Following this the applicant will be invited to either a face-to-face interview or invited to an online interview conducted from our newly equipped ‘broadcasting suite’ at the Society’s offices.
Not only is this an important new process for applicants but it is also an important new initiative for existing members. Whilst it has been difficult under the existing assessment process to engage members from around the country in face-to-face interviewing, they can now participate in assessing applicants submissions from a distance. Being an assessor not only allows members to become involved but they are also able to attribute this to their CPD and professional contribution which forms part of the Pathway to Chartered Designer and a requirement in maintaining that status.
So if you are still practicing design, have ten or more years’ experience, think you are capable of identifying best professional design practice and would like to be considered as a an assessor, please get in touch by email to – no matter where you are based! 

Marking the launch of the Pathway to Chartered Designers sees Minerva’s pet owl becoming the logo for The Register of Chartered Designers.

The Society, which maintains The Register, is extremely grateful to Chris Mitchell FCSD, founder of Epic Iconsinternationally renowned illustrator and D&AD multiple award winner, for crafting the icon.

As well as producing some of the most recognisable global brand identities such as the Hovis bread boy on his bike and Britannia for the Bank of England, Chris developed our own Minerva brand.

If quoting Coelho was appropriate in considering the time taken to develop the website then quoting Molière is essential in respect of the time taken to develop the Pathway to Chartered Designer,
‘Trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit’.
Delivering a chartered status for designers has been a matter of considerable nurture since the seeds were sown with the Privy Council in 2001 but with the new website the Pathway to Chartered Designer is now open.
The Pathway is rigorous as you would expect from the professional body for designers in order to ensure its credibility amongst the other recognised professions. There are four stages along the Pathway, each requiring applicants to conduct a self-analysis of their competence and submit demonstrable evidence in support of that analysis. The submissions will be reviewed by various qualified panels before applicants are invited to a Professional Review at Stage 3.
Take a look at the Pathway to Chartered Designer Guidance to gain detailed information of the process and what is required and if you think you can demonstrate that you have what it takes to become a Chartered Designer just set up a user account and embark on your Pathway.

December will see the Society active during BoDW (Business of Design Week) in Hong Kong. The Society is one of four founding members of the Hong Kong Design Centre which organises the week that each year focusses on an international link. This year the link is with Barcelona and there is an array of Catalan and Spanish speakers on the programme.
More importantly for CSD there will be an informal gathering of members to herald the new CSD initiative in Hong Kong. At the same time the Society will be conducting membership assessments and any designers interested in becoming a member should complete the Registration stage on the new website.
The Register of Chartered Designers will also be presenting the Pathway to Chartered Designer at a special event during the week. Anyone interested in attending should contact the Society directly or via the ‘Chartership’ pages on the website.
Copyright © 2015 Chartered Society of Designers, All rights reserved.

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