DesignLab is a programme of in-depth projects that explore new ways of engaging secondary school students with design.

Thank you for a brilliant experience. This has made us think differently about how we teach Art & Design and DT – we have so many new ideas for our schemes of work.

Head of Faculty, Design & Technology

It brings schools together with museum educators, practising artists and designers and the Museum's collections to work on projects. It also provides teachers with training and CPD opportunities to develop new and innovative ways of teaching design. DesignLab aims to inspire a new generation of creative practitioners as well as broaden young people's understanding of the designed world around them, how it is made and its impact on society and the environment.

DesignLab allows students to:

  • Engage with historical and contemporary design
  • Work directly with professional artists and designers in an in-depth way
  • Connect with learning across the curriculum, including STEAM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Design and Maths)
  • Develop creativity, skills and knowledge relevant to working in the creative industries
  • Get advice about different pathways into creative careers

DesignLab is open to any state-funded secondary school. To register your interest or find out more about what's coming up this term contact:

Schools Liaison Administrator
Tel: +44 (0)20 7942 2622

The following film of a recent DesignLab project linked to our Alexander McQueen exhibition demonstrates how DesignLab works.

DesignLab Nation

DesignLab Nation

DesignLab Nation is the V&A new initiative to support 11-16 year olds in predominantly industrial areas, bringing together secondary schools in partnership with local museums and regional creative industries to inspire students, train teachers and preserve the essential role that Art, Design and Technology plays in education for young people. The programme is designed to help support the new Design and Technology GSCE, beginning in September 2017, working in partnership with Culture Coventry and Blackburn Museum.

Each DesignLab Nation partnership will be delivered by specialists and professionals from local design practices, working closely with a local museum which will act as a 'hub' for these in-depth secondary school projects.

DesignLab Nation will encourage young people to make their own contemporary responses to historical processes, and to gain an understanding of how collections from the past can inform new ideas.

If you would like to find out more, please contact us at