Q: Can I apply for the Associate distinction if I don't already have the Licentiate?
A: Anyone can apply for the Associate regardless of whether they have a Licentiate distinction or not, but we would only suggest doing so if you have a number of years of photographic experience. However, the final decision is entirely down to the applicant.
Q: Can I use my Associate images for my Fellowship submission?
A: No, your Fellowship submission needs to be a different body of work.
Q: Can I mix monochrome and colour images within my proposed panel?
A: Yes you can. This is perhaps more appropriate for the Licentiate distinction due to the nature of the criteria.
Q: I need a mentor, can you put me in contact with a panel member?
A: The RPS doesn’t officially provide a mentoring service, we can guide you and give advice and guidance throughout your application, please click here for information about out 1:1 Portfolio advice service
Q: Do I have to wait two years before I apply for an another level of Distinction after I've been successful?
A: There is no time period set. Although it’s generally suggested to wait and not rush into it.
Q: What are the available pathways for gaining a Distinction?
A: An Applicant can achieve a distinction through many different Panels and Formats these are:
1. Image lead Submissions, which consist of:
- Submitting a body of work in the form of still images to an Assessment. (Either Print, Digital or Book)
- Film, Digital & Multimedia – Submitting a body of work in the form of moving image to an Assessment.
2. Applications lead by Academic or Professional Qualifications and Written based submission.
- Research – Submitting a written document via the Research Panel.
- Creative Industries Qualification – Application of Academic Qualification and experience within the Creative Industry.
- Imaging Science Qualification – For those working in the field of scientific imaging.
- Exemption – Achieving an Academic qualification of the appropriate level of a recognised course.
Each pathway or Panel has its’ own individual Criteria and Requirements.
Q: Do I pay more for membership when I gain a Licentiate, Associate or Fellowship?
A: No, your membership subscription does not change.
Q: What's the cost of an assessment?
A: Members currently have priority booking for all assessments. Any remaining spaces will be opened up to Non-Members on a set date. Please visit the Assessment dates pages for more information on when this will happen.
Licentiate Submission fee £85 | Concession* £42.50
Associate Submission fee £120 | Concession* £60
Fellowship Submission fee £170 | Concession* £85
*Full time student | 25 & Under | Disabled
(proof of status required)
Q: For my Fellowship submission, do I have to submit to the same genre as my Associate submission?
A: No, You can change genres.
Q: Why do I have to be a member of the RPS to use my Distinction post-nominals?
A: The Distinction post-nominals (Licentiate: LRPS, Associate: ARPS and Fellow: FRPS) and those associated with our Qualifications, are recognition that an individual is a member of a Learned Society, and have had their photography assessed by their peers. They show not only that a person has reached a specific level of expertise, knowledge and understanding; but also that they are committed to maintaining these; continuing to play a part in a world leading photography charity and community, promoting photography for everyone; and observing our code of conduct. It’s not the same as a one-off qualification such as a university degree, but more akin to that of other learned societies. When a person leaves the RPS, they may continue to informally refer to their previous success in passing a Distinctions assessment, but it is appropriate that they stop using the post-nominals.