Rhode Island School of Design

Continuing Education

A wide variety of creative adventures await adult students at RISD Continuing Education. Year-round, courses are available in a broad range of visual arts and design disciplines (both traditional and digital), as well as in topics related to art and design as integral parts of our lives and culture. Our faculty bring skills as practicing professionals, renowned local artists and art educators, and are eager to pass along their knowledge to our students.

Please read through the list below for a quick guide to the spectrum of courses and programs RISD/CE provides for the adult student.

"The professor was enthusiastic and supportive; she challenged
my thinking and pushed me in new directions.

- Former RISD/CE Student

RISD/CE offers non-credit courses, lectures and workshops in fine and applied art and design, at beginning, intermediate and advanced levels. Most fall and spring courses meet once a week for 12 weeks, while winter and summer term courses meet once a week for six weeks. We also offer courses in a variety of formats, such as weekend workshops and technique intensives, single-session lectures, online courses and hybrid courses that combine online learning with studio sessions. Whatever your goal – personal enrichment or professional development – RISD/CE has a course to suit your needs.

Browse non-credit courses

Although any RISD/CE course may be taken for personal or professional enrichment, many may also be taken as part of a certificate program. Certificate programs are designed especially for adults who want a rigorous and comprehensive course of pre-professional and professional study on a part-time basis. Students enroll in certificate classes at their own pace, but an approximate timeframe of completion is 2 years. A background in art and design is helpful but not necessary for any of these programs.

Certificates include:

  • Animation
  • Graphic Design
  • Interactive Design
  • Interior Design
  • Jewelry + Light Metals
  • Natural Science Illustration
  • Painting Studies
  • Photography
  • Product Development + Manufacturing

Learn More about Certificate Programs

In addition to our year-round RISD/CE courses and certificate programs, we also offer several credit-bearing summer programs:

Summer Studies Courses in Visual Arts and Design encompass a wide spectrum of interests designed to meet the needs of beginning, intermediate and advanced students. Combining art and design concepts with cutting-edge technology, these six-week courses enable students to build competencies in balanced ways. Modular scheduling permits students to enroll in a combination of classes and activities tailored to their interests, or to concentrate in a single area.

RISD's Summer Institute for Graphic Design Studies is an unparalleled opportunity for students and professionals from numerous disciplines to immerse themselves in a broad range of graphic design topics, offered in a series of concentrated two-week courses.

The Textiles Summer Institute provides a unique opportunity for fine artists and designers to learn with renowned faculty members and outstanding facilities in a variety of six-week courses. The Institute’s courses allow individuals to develop their ideas through material investigations using RISD’s rarely accessible, world class equipment.

Create your own extraordinary experience at RISD this summer. Utilize RISD's renowned studios and distinctive critical thinking/critical making approach to add a new dimension to your art and design work. All of these summer programs offer open enrollment, and a variety of housing and dining options are available.