FAQs

Question markThe Fellowship

1. What is the RSA Fellowship?
2. What do the letters FRSA mean?
3. Where are Fellows located?

Becoming a Fellow

4. Who can join the Fellowship and how?
5. I don’t live in the UK. Can I apply?
6. How can I nominate someone for Fellowship?
7. I have completed my application and returned this to you, when can I expect to hear from you?
8. I used to be a Fellow – can I rejoin?
9. Will being a Fellow of the RSA help me obtain a visa?

Being a Fellow

10. What is expected of Fellows?
11. What are Fellowship networks and where are they?
12. How do I start something in my area?
13. How do I contact Fellows and engage online?

Support for Fellows: RSA Catalyst and RSA Skills bank

14. Does the RSA provide funding or grants for Fellows?
15. Who is eligible to apply?
16. Does the RSA provide funding or grants for Fellows’ projects outside the UK?
17. How do I apply to RSA Catalyst?
18. Who decides what applications receive funding?
19. How will I be told if my application is successful?
20. Can I apply to RSA Catalyst more than once?
21. Can I apply to RSA Catalyst if I already have a grant/award from another organisation?
22. What is RSA Skills bank?
23. How do I access registered Fellows in the Skills bank?
24. How do I register for RSA Skills bank?

Fellowship finance queries

25. Can I Gift Aid my Fellowship fee?
26. Can I claim tax relief on my Fellowship?
27. Other finance queries

Miscellaneous

28. Why can't I log into the website? 
29. Can I pay my subscription online or by phone?  
30. How do I update my personal or payment details with the RSA?
31. How do I get a replacement Fellowship card?
32. I have not received expected mail/email from the RSA.
33. How can I request a hard copy of your publications/online forms? 
34. Can I get a re-issue of an RSA exam certificate?
35. How do I get in touch?


FAQ's

The Fellowship

1. What is the RSA Fellowship?

An international community of over 27,000 achievers and influencers from a wide array of backgrounds and professions.

2. What do the letters FRSA mean?

Fellow of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce. Fellows are entitled to hold these letters after their name.

3. Where are Fellows located?

Fellows are represented across England and throughout the devolved nations, forming RSA Cymru Wales, RSA Ireland and RSA Scotland. If you live outside of the UK or travel frequently, you can access information about active networks where you are, including RSA USA, RSA Australia and New Zealand. You can also see more Fellows overseas in our RSA Connector programme.


Becoming a Fellow

4. Who can join the Fellowship and how?

Fellowship is open to anyone anywhere in the world who shares or demonstrates a commitment to positive social change in their professional, civic or personal life.
To find out more visit our website and enter your name and email address and we'll send you an email with a link to our application form. As part of the application you will be required to complete a personal statement outlining why you wish to become a Fellow of the RSA. Once you have completed your form please return to the address provided. We also accept scanned copies of the form which can be emailed to us.

5. I don’t live in the UK. Can I still apply?

Yes. We welcome applications from across the world. There are regular networks in cities throughout the United States, Europe, Australia and New Zealand as well as activity elsewhere. Find out about international activity where you are.

6. How can I nominate someone for Fellowship?

Fellows can nominate individuals to join the Fellowship by completing the online nomination form. An invitation will be sent on your behalf, including your statement of support. We will inform you if your nominee joins the Fellowship.

7. I have completed my application and returned this to you, when can I expect to hear from you?

We process applications on a weekly basis. Please allow up to 12 working days for confirmation. If you have any concerns please contact us on +44 (0)20 7451 6831 or email us.

8. I used to be a Fellow – can I rejoin?

Yes, and as a former Fellow you will not need to pay a registration fee or provide any references. Please write to fellowship@rsa.org.uk or telephone 0207 451 6904 for a ‘rejoin’ application form.

9. Will being a Fellow of the RSA help me obtain a Visa?

RSA Fellows are drawn from all around the world. However, the RSA does not provide any support in regards to Visa applications or immigration issues.

We only encourage people to apply for Fellowship that subscribe to our aims as set out in the Fellowship Charter.


Being a Fellow

10. What is expected of Fellows?

There is no enforced minimum level of engagement for RSA Fellows. Fellows are encouraged and supported through the Fellowship Network to develop and collaborate on local and issue-based initiatives.

11. What are Fellowship networks and where are they?

Fellowship networks are regular meetings held across the world.

There are established networks across the UK, the USA, continental Europe and Australia, as well as gatherings in other international locations. Find out what is happening where you are.

12. How do I start something in my area?

A range of ideas for creating interesting meetings and events – along with many other resources and guides for Fellows – are available on the Fellows' tools & techniques page

13. How do I contact Fellows and engage online?

There a number of effective ways to engage with other Fellows online – see Seven ways to become an online Fellow. There are online platforms like RSA Comment which helps you discuss ideas online and RSAFellowship.com where you can contact other Fellows and promote any events or projects which might be of interested to other Fellows (though please note these need to align with the RSA’s ethos and cannot be of commercial benefit).

You can also connect with other Fellows face-to-face and at events where you are.



Support for Fellows: RSA Catalyst and RSA Skills bank

14. Does the RSA provide funding or grants for Fellows?

Yes, through RSA Catalyst. Catalyst funds (£1-£2k) are available for new or early-stage projects that have a tangible social impact.  Funding is subject to assessment. Larger additional grants of up to £5k are available to projects that have previously received a smaller grant.

15. Who is eligible to apply?

Funding is available for RSA Fellows only.

16. Does the RSA provide funding or grants for Fellows’ projects outside the UK?

Yes. Previous winners are featured in Fellowship News.

17. How do I apply to RSA Catalyst?

Visit the RSA Catalyst page and download our application guidelines.

If you wish to discuss your application with a member of staff prior to submission, contact us on +44(0)20 7451 6856 or email us.

18. Who decides what applications receive funding?

Applications are assessed by a panel with representation from the Fellowship Council and senior RSA staff. The awards panel meets every six weeks. Future submission deadlines are announced on the RSA Catalyst page.

19. How and when will I be told if my application is successful?

All applicants will be notified by email within fifteen working days following the application deadline. 

20. Can I apply to the Catalyst fund more than once?

Should your application be unsuccessful, you are eligible to re-apply. Feedback is provided to all applicants.

If your application is successful, you are eligible to apply for an extension grant.

21. Can I apply if I already have a grant/award from another organisation?

Yes. It is essential that you share details of any other supporters as part of the application process.  

22. What is RSA Skills bank?

A pool of skills consisting of Fellows who have registered their expertise and interests with us.

23. How do I register for RSA Skills bank?

You can register online or by contacting us on +44 (0)20 7451 6856 or by email.

24. How do I access registered Fellows in the Skills bank?

The quickest way to access skills is to fill out a Catalyst application (leaving the request for a grant empty). You can do this via RSA Catalyst.


Fellowship finance queries

25. Can I Gift Aid my Fellowship fee?

If you are a UK tax payer, then yes, we'd love you to! Your annual Fellowship subscription is a charitable donation to the work of the RSA. Please contact fellowship@rsa.org.uk for a Gift Aid mandate. A mandate will also be present on your next renewal form. Fellowship dues paid by overseas Fellows who are not UK tax payers, do not qualify.

26. Can I claim tax relief on my Fellowship?

No; your annual Fellowship subscription is a charitable donation to the work of the RSA, and as such is not eligible for tax relief.

27. Other finance queries

The RSA accepts payment by the following methods – Direct Debit; Visa, Mastercard or AmEx; cheque, or CAF cheque; or direct bank transfer. We cannot accept cash payments.

For any other finance-related questions, please contact fellowship@rsa.org.uk or telephone 0207 451 6827.


Miscellaneous

28. Why can't I log into the website?

Firstly please check that your "cookies" feature is turned on. Please note that your log-in details are case-sensitive.
Contact the webmaster if you cannot resolve the problem.

29. Can I pay my subscription online or by phone?  

Online payments are currently unavailable. However, an online payment facility is being developed. Contact the Fellowship office on +44 (0)20 7451 6827 if you would like to pay your subscription by phone.

30. How do I update my personal or payment details with the RSA?

Please email us or telephone 0207 451 6927 with your new details.

31. How do I get a replacement Fellowship card?

Ordinarily, you will receive a new Fellowship card in the weeks following your annual subscription payment. If your card has been lost, stolen or damaged, you can request a new one by writing to fellowship@rsa.org.uk. Please note that you do not have to have your card with you to use the RSA House facilities, although it is advised. If you do not have your card, please quote your Fellowship number at reception.

32. I have not received expected mail/email from the RSA.

Please contact fellowship@rsa.org.uk or call 0207 451 6927 to confirm that we have the correct contact details for you.

33. How can I request a hard copy of your publications/online forms?

Where possible, we make our communications and publications available online to download. As a registered charity, this helps the Society to economise on its administration costs. Contact us on +44 (0)20 7451 6927 or email us if you wish to make a request.

34. Can I get a re-issue of an RSA exam certificate?

The RSA no longer administrates examinations, and the RSA exam board is now part of the Oxford, Cambridge and Royal Society of Arts Examining Board (OCR).
For exam and certificate queries, please email the OCR directly.

35. How do I get in touch?

If you have further questions, please contact us at +44 (0)20 7451 6927 or email us.