glasgow, scotland

Glasgow School of Art

The Glasgow School of Art (GSA) has a long and distinguished history of producing innovative, creative, and successful artists, designers, and architects. The school is recognized worldwide for its distinctive, specialist, practice-based, education model. At the GSA you will have the opportunity to study and collaborate with people from different cultures and disciplines on a daily basis.

The school is renowned for the drive and standing of its academic staff, visiting lecturers, and critics, who are not only inspiring teachers, but practicing artists with international reputations in their fields. For many, the GSA is synonymous with Charles Rennie Mackintosh, an influential artist, designer, and architect of the late 19th and early 20th century. An alumnus of the school and architect of the campus’s main building, Mackintosh is one of a stream of intensely creative and innovative graduates who have influenced and continue to influence world culture, creativity, and design.

International students come from over 55 countries. The student population is 1900 with approximately 80 students per year attending from exchange partner institutions.

The Glasgow School of Art is located in the center of Glasgow, Scotland's largest city (population 588,280), and is easily accessed by bus, taxi, and railway. For more information about the school, visit the GSA website.

About Glasgow

Art and culture abound in Glasgow and as a student you will find yourself part of a vibrant and cosmopolitan European city. Glaswegians know how to enjoy themselves and are renowned for their friendly and welcoming attitude. Glasgow is home to one of the best metropolitan art galleries and museum collections in the UK and many of the national performing arts companies. In addition, Glasgow has numerous cultural venues, some of the best clubs and pubs in the UK, and the largest retail center outside of London. The city has four soccer teams—Celtic, Partick Thistle, Queens Park, and Rangers—and the national football stadium at Hampden. Glasgow is often referred to as the “dear green place”, a reference to the city's extensive parks.

Glasgow is a compact city and as a student at the GSA, you are at the heart of it. The campus and student residences are situated a short walk from Sauchiehall Street, one of the main pedestrian streets. Getting around Glasgow is easy, whether by foot, by the extensive bicycle routes, or by public transport. Wherever you choose to live in the city, you won’t be far from a train, underground, or bus route. In 2008, Glasgow was recognized as one of the safest cities in the world and number one in the United Kingdom.

Some of the best hiking, climbing, and skiing in the UK are within easy reach of Glasgow by road and rail. The west coast of Scotland, with a stunning coast line, is less than an hour away by train or car, as is Loch Lomond, Scotland's largest loch. Both provide excellent opportunities for sailing and other water sports. (Source: See Glasgow)

Fields of Study

GSA offers Fine Art Photography, Painting and Printmaking, Sculpture, and Environmental Art at the undergraduate level.

Language and Curriculum

International exchange students are enrolled in courses with degree students as well as international students. The classes are in English, and English language support is offered to international students for whom English is not their first language. GSA has structured classes, along with independent study time, so it’s important to have self-discipline. Students at GSA take historical and critical studies courses in addition to studio classes. Note that all students (including exchange/study abroad) are expected to pay lab/material fees, separate from programme fees (see the fees chart).

Term Dates

The terms available for international exchange students are Term 1, which runs from mid-September through mid-December, and Term 2, which runs from early January through mid-March. SFAI students should note that the exchange periods are not as long as SFAI semesters.

Deadline to apply – April 1 for both semesters

Housing Overview

International exchange students can apply for student accommodation, but are not classed as priority. GSA’s Student Services department offers a list of available private student accommodation. The cost of rent varies throughout the city.

Application Requirements

SFAI students who wish to apply to the GSA are required to send the following:

-SFAI Study Abroad Application
-GSA Application
-Two letters of recommendation from SFAI faculty. Download the recommendation form.
-Official SFAI academic transcript
-A portfolio of your work - 15-20 images usually on a CD
-A personal statement outlining your artistic interests and how you feel these will be met at GSA.