Textiles Summer Institute
Founded upon the need for local textile mills to educate and support designers, Rhode Island School of Design has been at the forefront of textile design education for 135 years. Every summer, artists and designers from around the world and from all backgrounds are provided the unique opportunity to learn with renowned faculty and access the RISD Textile Department's exceptional facilities. Studies of material, technique and conceptual development are at the heart of the Textile Summer Institute program – including traditional textile techniques and technologically enhanced approaches on rarely accessible, world-class equipment. Small class size and concentrated course structure enable creative two- and three-dimensional possibilities and projects, whether for apparel, interiors or fine art. Collectively, students share ideas, experiences and alternative disciplinary approaches through hands-on learning and group critiques. Individually, artists and designers are encouraged to dig deep to incorporate personal meaning and experimentation into their work.
Courses and program details are subject to change without notice.
NOTE: Housing and dining plans and fees, deadline dates, and check-in procedures listed below are for the 2013 Summer Programs. Information specific to 2014 Summer Programs will be posted here in late Fall 2013.
Summer 2014 Term Dates
Summer 2013 Courses
Check out what we offered in Summer 2013 for the Textiles Summer Institute.
Request a Catalog
Request additional information, including the Summer Programs catalog and email updates.
How to Register
Visit the Textiles Summer Institute Registration page to learn how to register and for more information on deadlines and applying as an international student.
If the course for which a student registers is full, his or her name is automatically placed on a waiting list, and the student is contacted by email and/or phone.
RISD’s comprehensive studio facilities and extensive equipment have an excellent international reputation. Facilities in over 40 buildings include highly specialized computer labs, darkrooms, kilns, printmaking studios, textile studios, woodworking shops devoted to industrial design, furniture design and sculpture, and the Edna Lawrence Nature Laboratory, a repository of more than 90,000 natural specimens.
neighborhood + surrounding area
College Hill, on Providence’s historic East Side, is one of the most picturesque sections of the city, home to the expansive campuses of RISD and neighboring Brown University. The main RISD campus, situated at the center of the historic district, is famous for its narrow streets lined with restored Colonial homes and fine examples of early Federal and 19th-century architecture. RISD’s extensive facilities span Providence’s central rivers — home to Waterplace Park and WaterFire, a recurring after-dark festival of light and music — and include several notably restored historic buildings in the city’s vibrant downtown.
RISD’s neighborhood offers a variety of restaurants, cafés, shops, bookstores and art cinemas. If you like music and theater, you can enjoy great performances at popular local venues, including the nationally acclaimed Trinity Repertory Company and the Providence Performing Arts Center. Local restaurants range from ethnically rich neighborhood eateries to world-renowned, five-star dining establishments. All of these options are within walking distance of the college.
While Rhode Island is only 48 miles long and 37 miles wide, it is blessed with almost 500 miles of enchanting coastline along the Atlantic Ocean and Narragansett Bay. Rhode Island is also convenient to such popular summer destinations as Newport, Block Island, Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket, which makes it an ideal jumping-off point for family vacations, or a perfect vacation destination in itself. Traversable in little more than an hour, the state offers both a welcome retreat from the bustle of Boston and New York, and easy access to these cities by road, rail, bus and airplane. In short, it’s a great place to be — especially in the summer.
Grades + Credit
Student work in all credit-bearing courses is evaluated through letter grades from the faculty. (Grades of "Incomplete" are not allowed.) Grades are mailed approximately four to six weeks after the semester ends, but they are withheld if the student owes fees to any RISD department (such as the library). Please be sure to settle accounts promptly. Transcripts are not available until grades are sent out.
grade review + change
For guidelines regarding requests for an academic grade review, please contact RISD/CE at 401 454-6200. Please note that grades are subject to revision by the instructor, with the approval of the CE Associate Director for Student Support Services, through November 21, 2014. After that time, all grades become a permanent part of the academic record and cannot be changed.
acceptance + transfer of credits
Rhode Island School of Design Division of Continuing Education (CE) offers credit-bearing courses in the summer session only. While the credit offered by CE is distinct from credit courses offered in RISD degree programs, CE is in compliance with all relevant NASAD guidelines concerning the number of required contact hours mandated for credit courses.
- Students from institutions other than RISD: Students who are not RISD matriculated students transfer the credit earned from CE Summer Studies courses to their home institution. It is at the descretion of the home institution to make decisions about what credits it will accept.
- RISD Matriculated Students: RISD/CE credit is treated as transfer credit by RISD's undergraduate degree programs. Although the course is recorded in the student's transcript, the grade is not; nor is the grade counted in the calculation of the student's GPA. Different policies apply regarding the transferring of RISD/CE credit to RISD degree programs, depending on whether the student is an undergraduate or a graduate student, and on whether the course is a studio course or a liberal arts course, as follows:
- RISD Undergraduate Students: RISD undergraduates are not permitted to transfer more than 12 credit hours towards their degree from outside of the RISD degree program, including those from the RISD/CE Summer Programs. Those students interested in taking a CE Summer Studies, SIGDS, or Textiles Summer Institute course must discuss the matter with their Department Head or major advisor (or for Liberal Arts courses, the Liberal Arts Division) before enrolling in one of these courses for non-major elective credit, making sure to get the appropriate signature on the Summer Undergraduate Credit Pre-Approval Form.
- RISD Graduate Students: Transfer credits from outside the RISD Graduate Degree Programs -- including RISD/CE Summer Programs courses -- are not ordinarily accepted by RISD.
transcripts for non-RISD students
Transcripts must be requested in writing. For a transcript of your coursework, send $5 per transcript requested (pay by check, money order or credit card; cash payments are not accepted for this service). Students may download the Continuing Education Transcript Request Form or write a letter including the following information: name at the time of enrollment, course title(s), year attended and telephone number, as well as the contact name, address (including department) and zip code where the transcript is to be sent. If paying by credit card, please include card number, expiration date and cardholder name, plus house number and zip code of the billing address.
Mail requests to:
Rhode Island School of Design
Office of Continuing Education
Two College Street
Providence, RI 02903-2787
or fax to 401-454-6218
Allow two to three weeks for processing. If you must meet a specific deadline, state it in your letter of request. Transcripts are not mailed without full payment and the complete address of the recipient, nor are transcripts processed until grades are sent out (approximately four to six weeks after the program ends).
Housing + Dining
RISD offers a variety of housing styles and options for use during the summer. Each option requires participation in a RISD dining plan. There are three categories of Summer Programs accommodation to choose from to meet each individual’s needs:
1) Shared Rooms, where two people share a common living/sleeping room with an adjacent bathroom, are the most economical choice. Shared rooms require participation in a full meal plan.
2) Single Rooms offer the privacy of your own room accompanied by a shared bathroom. Single rooms require participation in a full meal plan.
3) Private Apartments cater to more independent living and offer a self-contained, private apartment with sleeping/living area, private bathroom and private kitchen in the Charles Landing Apartments. This RISD housing complex is a ten-minute walk north of the campus’ geographic center. A local vendor provides both internet and cable TV services (included in the room rate) to the complex. Additional amenities include an outdoor pool and a free parking space for residents. Apartment residents may choose between a variety of dining options but, because we do not equip apartment kitchens with cooking/dining supplies, we require a minimum of a five-meal block plan per week.
All accommodations provide:
- bed and mattress (extra-long 80-inch twin in shared and single rooms; full size in private apartments)
- desk and chair
- closet or wardrobe
Residents must provide:
- mattress covers
- other electronic or computer equipment
Each building offers laundry facilities or you may contract for a professional linen and laundry service at additional cost; information on the latter is distributed with the program forms and documentation and at Check-In. Please note: We do not permit smoking in any building on the RISD campus. Also, pets are not permitted in any RISD residential facility. All rooms are air-conditioned.
All residence halls offer wired network access and all except Charles Landing (see above) include wireless access via guest privileges. Additionally, summer students may utilize RISD's computer labs, library and publicly accessible stations for their computing needs.
We grant housing requests based on availability. Individual rooms, suites or apartments are single sex. All buildings and floors are mixed gender. Special requests to accommodate medical or psychological needs require additional information; call Residence Life at 401 454-6650 or email email@example.com for the relevant forms. We provide move-in instructions and your specific room assignment via email at least one week prior to your arrival.
The Metcalf Dining Center, known as “The Met”, is centrally located in the Residence Life Quad. The Met features a build-your-own sandwich station, salad and pasta bars, vegetarian, vegan and traditional entrées and a Wood Stone pizza oven. The Portfolio Café, located in the lobby of 15 West (the Mandle Building), serves continental breakfast for residents.
The RISD Dining Services staff is sensitive to the dietary needs and preferences of its student body, representing cultures and religious traditions from around the world. If you have further questions about meal plans, or special dietary needs, please contact the Associate Director for Dining, Pierre St-Germaine, at 401 454-6362.
Students living in RISD housing must choose between the following meal plans:
For students who want to be able to dine as they wish, the full meal plan features all-you-care-to-eat service at the Met for $197 per week. Students living in shared or single rooms must subscribe to this plan.
Students living in a private apartment (Charles Landing) may choose either the full meal plan, or meal blocks. Each meal block includes five (5) all-you-care-to-eat meals per week at a cost of $47. Apartment residents must purchase a minimum 5-meal block per week, but may purchase as many blocks as they wish, or a full meal plan, to meet their needs.
Students living off campus are not required to have a meal plan, but may choose from either plan if desired.
housing + dining fees
If you plan to live on campus and are not a current RISD student, please review your choice of room below. Living in Shared or Single rooms requires participation in the full meal plan ($197 per week). Living in Private Apartments requires participation in the five-meal block plan per week ($47 per week) or students may opt to choose the full meal plan ($197 per week). Students requiring housing for less than two weeks must contact the Residence Life office in writing.
2014 WEEKLY RATES:
TOTAL (per week)
$422 per week
$526 per week
Private Apartments (w/ 5-meal block plan)
$462 per week
Private Apartments (w/ full meal plan)
$612 per week
To apply for the campus housing and dining options described above, complete and return the appropriate registration form for your summer program. Indicate the number of weeks you will be here and then multiply that number by the TOTAL per week from this chart. Include the nonrefundable housing deposit of $100 with your registration form. (Full payment must be made after the deposit deadline of April 19, 2013.) Note: All non-US citizens requiring an F-1 visa must include payment in full at the time of application. Beginning in May 2013, all students who have paid the housing deposit (or made payment in full) will be sent an email, from the Residence Life office, with specific instructions on how to complete their housing application process.
dining hall hours
Monday-Friday: 7-9am, 11:30am-2pm, 4:30-7:30pm
Saturday + Sunday: 8am-2pm, 4:30-7:30pm
(for Students in Shared or Single Rooms)
Parking for summer students may only be arranged through the Residence Life Office, which leases space at the Charles Landing Apartments, a ten-minute walk from the center of the RISD campus. Summer rates are $10 per day, $60 per week or $300 for a six-week summer program. To reserve a space, or ask questions regarding parking, contact RISD's Residence Life Office (as indicated below).
for more information
If you have questions regarding summer housing that are not covered on this website, please call RISD’s Residence Life office at 401 454-6650, Monday-Friday between 8:30am-4:30pm EST, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Travel + Directions to Campus
Access to RISD is easy to arrange by car, bus, air or train. The Amtrak train station is within walking distance, though taxi service is recommended for students with heavy luggage. T.F. Green Airport is 12 miles south of Providence in Warwick, providing direct flights to most major cities. T.F. Green airport vans are available to downtown Providence and the RISD campus for a nominal fee. International students traveling to RISD by plane are advised to also check flights into Boston's Logan International Airport for more direct flights and potentially lower airfares. Logan International Airport is located a one-hour bus ride from downtown Providence. Frequent buses run directly from Logan International Airport to downtown Providence.
From Interstate 95 North or South, take Exit 22A, Downtown. Continue straight off the exit ramp onto Memorial Boulevard. At the fourth light, turn left onto Washington Place (which becomes Waterman Street). Consult the campus map to locate the appropriate building and parking lot.
From Interstate 195 Westbound, take Exit 2, South Main Street. Follow South Main Street for five blocks to its intersection with College Street. Consult the campus map to locate the appropriate building and parking lot.
For More Information
Please contact RISD/CE to request an academic advisement appointment or learn more about the Textiles Summer Institute.
For additional information on our academic and financial policies, including withdrawals and refunds, visit the Summer Program Policies page.