CHEAD is the representative body for the art and design higher education sector (HE A&D). Its mission is to contribute to the development of the A&D community, its standing and stature as well as its engagement with the outside world.

A voice for Higher Education Art & Design

CHEAD provides leadership and an inclusive, cohesive body for and on behalf of HE A&D in the UK four nations, advancing knowledge and understanding in the sector and promoting the sector’s interests to others.


Our members include all types of higher education institutions (small-specialist, Russell Group, post-92 university, public as well as privately funded, etc). CHEAD shares with its members the objective of enhancing the student experience of HE in Art and Design, and respects the independent and diverse approaches adopted by members in this regard. Correspondingly, CHEAD representatives, in carrying out the business of the organisation, place the wider interests of the sector first.

Subject coverage:

CHEAD focuses on art and design subjects; these subjects relate closely to other subjects – for example: media, performing arts, architecture, and art and design history – CHEAD welcomes interaction with and between these subjects.

For our members we offer

  • Networking opportunities with peers from other member institutions and from key external organisations.
  • Support networks and events for specific groups, such as gallery staff and for aspiring academic leaders.
  • Debates of the values of our subject at regional seminars, which are hosted by CHEAD member institutions.
  • Funding for regional seminars and for A&D Learning & Teaching Awards.
  • A voice for the sector: CHEAD has got a strong track record in nominating members to participate on curriculum review panels, provide evidence at consultations etc.