Undergraduate study

BA (Hons) Fashion

UCAS code: W233 BA/Fash

A fashion degree at Teesside embraces knowledge and creativity in the pursuit of creative fashion innovation. This contemporary fashion course is informed by key elements of culture, identity, sustainability and making, situated by environment and place. As a creative fashion designer you will be immersing yourself in a fast-paced, fluid, global industry.

Course information


  • Length: 3 years (or 4 including a work placement)

More full-time details


  • Up to 6 years

More part-time details

  • Daytime
  • Enrolment date: September
  • Admission enquiries: 01642 738800

Contact details

Further information

  • Student work
  • News

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    Teesside University’s work to promote the arts has brought prestigious recognition with a nomination in the Times Higher Education Awards 2017.

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    BA (Hons) Fashion Enterprise students Yin Yi Gan, left, with Jhestry Familara. Link to View the pictures. International recognition for fashion students
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This course nurtures conceptual and technological skills to foster new ways of thinking. You innovate practices of garment construction and creatively manipulate fabric around the body, developing skills desired by employers with experimentation that pushes your own creative barriers. Experienced professionals share their knowledge and passion in developing collections with a unique global and contemporary identity.

Browse our final-year students’ work during their Design Degree Show 2018.


  • Pattern cutting, drape, specialist pattern cutting techniques like Japanese cutting
  • Fashion theory and fashion cultures
  • Fashion and identity
  • The fashion cycle
  • Sustainable fashion
  • Fashion and the environment

In Year 1 you are able to experience the fundamental skills of fashion with a broad experience that integrates the creative process of design and planning with contextual underpinning knowledge of the fashion marketing and the fashion industry. You are introduced to essential trends, design, planning and concepts of branding as well as essential skills in CAD.During Year 2 you experience a wide range of practical project-based work, seminars and lecturers that develop technical and conceptual skills, developing your own individual focus within the broad range of fashion outcomes. Here you may begin to specialise if you wish. You further develop your knowledge, strengths, professional and management skills, and apply your ideas and processes to more complex outcomes. Year 2 develops a sustainable dialogue with industry and experienced professionals using critical evaluation and a high-level creativity to innovate new fashion solutions for body adornment and fashion accessories. In Year 3 the emphasis is placed firmly on developing your professional and future career aspirations. You are able to negotiate your own project, which will be underpinned by professional modules working with specialists and practitioners within the fashion and related creative industries. By the end of Year 3 you will have gained skills desired by employers and a professional and critical dialogue with contemporary fashion, giving you the independence and confidence to succeed within a changing global creative industry.

You can complete an optional work placement year as part of this degree course at no extra cost.

Course structure

Year 1 core modules

Contextual Studies

Covering the period from the late 17th century to the present day you look at how the evolution of culture through industrialisation, technological change, social movement and political transformation has informed the changing face of fashion and textiles. You examine key changes, movements and issues that have changed the landscape of fashion, textiles and the fashion retail environment.

Design Project: Range Planning and Development

You gain a basic understanding of the processes, working practices and design communication involved within a practical design framework, in the production of a basic collection of a range of fashion samples that bring together visual realisation, design development, garment manufacture and presentation skills. Through the negotiated lerning plan you experience the translation of initial ideas into finished design proposals, giving you an appreciation of the process of production of fashion design from concept to completion.

Introduction to Design Management

You examine the fundamental principles and practices essential to managing a commercial fashion enterprise. You are introduced to the basic considerations of a design manager and operational processes of a creative director within the fashion industry gaining an understanding and appreciation of issues around planning and researching your range, design of the product and product cycles, ethics and sustainability, sourcing and production, the supply chain, distribution and retail.

Introduction to Garment Construction

You gain an understanding of the skills and practices in the construction of garments for fashion and the processes of development from research initiation through development to a completed product. You also gain an understanding of the technical aspects of pattern cutting and grading and through practical exercises and skills development gain knowledge of professional approaches to garment construction.

Professional Skills 1

This module helps you apply creative ideas and innovative methods to turn ideas into action. You explore and investigate fashion and textiles as a space for innovating, experimenting and initiating inspiration arising from guided workshops and interventions – these instil the notation of creative thinking as applying creative ideas that are not limited by current thinking or beliefs. This module explores the concept of the studio as the iterative lab through active and experiential learning.

This module introduces you to key skills within the design and creative project planning process including research, trends analysis, critical and visual evaluation, and digital processes, equipment and the fundamentals of key software applications used in the fashion and textiles industry. You develop technical knowledge across a range of platforms with the potential for visualising and generating creative ideas, research and storyboarding, developing designs, managing projects and presentations.

Professional Skills 2

Following on from Professional Skills 1 you develop a range of skills that include being able to communicate clearly and effectively to different audiences (both orally and in writing), making an effective contribution as a member of a team, working independently or on your own initiative when required, tackling problems without all the necessary knowledge, understanding ethics and how ethical considerations underpin all professional processes within fashion and textiles, locating information and assessing its usefulness, making efficient and effective use of the latest information technology within a unified specific guided project. You also learn to assess your own performance – recognising and building on your strengths, identifying and improving your weaknesses.

In this module, key skills are explicitly developed and assessed by means of a series of learning activities. You need to use different skills while also learning key aspects of your chosen subject.


Year 2 core modules

Concept, Manufacture and Finish

You further develop the research and garment prototypes you created Create Cut and Construct. You focus on producing a garment, sourcing fabric, costing, grading, fashion styling, and producing a digital portfolio.

You enhance your skills in garment construction and finish, project management, critical analysis, market awareness and creative thinking.

You construct and finish your garments using appropriate methods while documenting the process. You also communicate fashion concepts through a verbal presentation, project portfolio, fashion illustration and styling.

Contemporary Issues

You examine professional practices, knowledge, attitudes and understanding required to successfully compete in the contemporary fashion and textiles industries through an understanding of the macro perspective on global trends and future thinking in fashion and retail.

You develop contemporary themes from the fashion and textiles theory and examine issues of fashion as identity, economic shifts and change, omni channel retailing the individual, social and gender identity, representation, the 'erotic', consumption and clothing as communication.

You extend your skills in research, analysis, critical reading and thinking, independent study and communication as you investigate topics for your assignment work. You are encouraged to develop a high standard of written and oral communication skills in preparation for employment or further career development.

Create, Cut and Construct

You focus on your area of interest and specialism within creative fashion practice, and integrate your skills and knowledge in the context of your own career aspirations and goals.

You gain an understanding of the market and its relevance to developing garment. You use your technical knowledge and creativity to develop a fashion concept and explore ideas both two- and three-dimensionally.

You use market research and trend analysis to inform design development and toile production using creative pattern cutting and moulage techniques. Technical experimentation through fabric manipulation, pattern cutting and new technologies allows you to take an experimental approach and discover new practices.

Professional Skills: Entrepreneurship

You examine the enterprise agenda and the transitional process from study to entrepreneurial career goals and aspirations required to turn your business and commercial ideas into reality. You look into consolidation of business, management and marketing theories and strategies and applying this knowledge to your business and career goals and the production of a commercial real world scenario.

You look at professional practice and career development and encompass a range of skills including identification of opportunities, developing teams for project implementation, project planning and management, self and practice promotion, advanced verbal presentation skills and leadership abilities to dispel the notion of the cult of the creative genius through the realisation of strategic planning and analysis. You carry out self reflection so you can develop and enhance your learning and recognise and consider effective strategies for personal achievement. Individual portfolio reviews and a variety of class and VLE based exercises will be used to help you enhance your personal and educational development.

Technical Skills: Specialism

Covering a specialist range of digital and technical skills and processes relevant to the textiles specialist, you explore the commercial practices of making and producing textiles samples. Delivered using studio and workshop-based sessions, you are encouraged to actively participate in producing a personal, largely machine-manufactured textile design portfolio with a fashion, interior design or designer maker focus. You use research skills by referencing the work of professional and commercial designers in relation to digital outputs, applications, and machine and hand-craft processes.

The Fashion Project

You develop critical thinking and an understanding of current issues and debates in the field of fashion marketing, design and related practices including styling and retail. You create an effective final solution whether text, visuals or a mix of the made and critical object as a result of reflective methodologies and decision making that engages the process of synthesis, analysis and evaluation from an initial concept or investigation. You apply analytical skills to reflect upon and evaluate your work throughout a project and through this iterative practice to progress in their chosen field of fashion. You explore a variety of themes to extend your skills in research, analysis, independent study and communication as you investigate and develop solutions through your project work.


Year 3 optional placement year

Final-year core modules

Final Major Fashion Project

You devise and undertake a major project that consolidates and celebrates your individual strengths and skills in fields including fashion branding, marketing, fashion journalism, fashion media, styling and design. You initiate and/or select an appropriate negotiated brief and increase your ability to manage a complex project through all its stages, informed by an awareness of the relevant contexts and the needs of clients/users/contexts and applications.

Delivery is largely through workshops and small group tutorials where formative feedback is available from tutors and peers. Assessment of the project takes research and development into account as well as your final proposal and a verbal/on-screen presentation.

Major Project: Planning, Analysis, Synthesis

This module develops your own field of interest and allows you to negotiate your personal programme of study. You are encouraged to adopt a questioning, creative and innovative approach to fashion, marketing, enterprise and media, and focus on conceptual and experimental exploration.

You strengthen your self-motivation and develop your approach to proactive and self-directed independent study. You initiate, develop and expand your project with effective and focused research, presenting your completed design work in an appropriate method and media. You take responsibility for directing your own learning, and organising and managing your own time.

You have the opportunity to undertake appropriate external or live projects.

Performance and Production Realisation

This module will provide you with the opportunity to work as part of a creative ensemble towards the presentation of major performance related projects. It will develop and extend your skills of project design, management and devising and will extend your knowledge and understanding of the ways in which performance originates, is constructed and received.

On successful completion of the module you will be able to:

  • produce substantial performances that demonstrate intellectual flexibility and the connections between (contemporary) theory and practice;
  • plan, undertake and evaluate negotiated, self-managed projects;
  • critically appraise the impact of ethical and legal issues relevant to the generation of original new performance realisation;
  • recognise and evaluate factors which enhance group processes and team-work, and modify and evaluate your personal effectiveness within a team.

You will be assessed via the presentation of live performances and critical evaluations.

Professional Practice: The Fashion Industry

You undertake one or more live projects, simulated external workplace activity or fulfil a live project brief. You demonstrate your entrepreneurial skills, process and knowledge in the context of external evaluation that will influence the direction of your chosen career and be meaningful to prospective employers and/or clients. Areas of research are tailored to your chosen areas and focus of interest and nurture your career strategy.

You demonstrate business skills in a professional approach to work related and real time external projects and industrial experience. Areas of practice and activity will be tailored to the your areas and genres of interest.


Modules offered may vary.

How you learn

A full range of digital resources and workshop facilities, using up-to-date equipment and processes, supports the studio environment. Independent and student-centred learning are encouraged in addition to taught sessions with staff. Theoretical work is delivered through illustrated lectures and seminars where there is opportunity for collective discussion.

The work produced is the work assessed. There are no exams – producing design projects are a key feature. Assessment is undertaken against carefully defined criteria and project-based assignments involve a critique. The critique is a reflective process allowing for both staff and peer group appraisal.

Our Disability Services team helps students with additional needs resulting from disabilities such as sensory impairment or learning difficulties such as dyslexia
Find out more about our disability services

Find out more about financial support
Find out more about our course related costs

Career opportunities

  • Fashion design
  • Drape
  • Millinery
  • Accessories
  • Fashion print
  • Specialist garment construction
  • Lingerie

Work placement

We produce graduates with the problem-solving and leadership skills necessary to forge successful careers.

This programme allows you to spend an optional year - in-between your second year and final year - learning and developing your skills through work experience. You have a dedicated work placement officer and the University's award-winning careers service to help you with applying for a placement. Advice is also available on job hunting and networking. Employers are often invited to our School to meet you and present you with opportunities for work placements.

By taking a work placement year you gain experience favoured by graduate recruiters and develop your technical skillset. You also obtain the transferable skills required in any professional environment. Transferable skills include communication, negotiation, teamwork, leadership, organisation, confidence, self-reliance, problem-solving, being able to work under pressure, and commercial awareness.

Throughout this programme, you get to know prospective employers and extend your professional network. An increasing number of employers view a placement as a year-long interview and, as a result, placements are increasingly becoming an essential part of an organisation's pre-selection strategy in their graduate recruitment process.

Potential benefits from completing a work placement year include:

  • improved job prospects
  • enhanced employment skills and improved career progression opportunities
  • a higher starting salary than your full-time counterparts
  • a better degree classification
  • a richer CV
  • a year's salary before completing your degree
  • experience of workplace culture
  • the opportunity to design and base your final-year project within a working environment.

Entry requirements

Your offer will be made on the basis of your UCAS application, your portfolio and, if appropriate, your interview.

Year 1 entry
UCAS Tariff Points: 96-112 UCAS Tariff points from any combination of recognised Level 3 qualifications.

Eligible applicants are normally invited for interview. The interview is to determine each applicant’s potential to succeed and to help us set appropriate entry conditions matched to personal circumstances and the demands of the course. The interview also enables our applicants to see our excellent facilities, meet staff and students, and to learn more about studying at Teesside University.

Offers of places are normally made at or after the interview and we strongly encourage you to attend. If you are unable to attend, we can organise a virtual interview: you send your work to us, usually on CD, and we discuss it with you over the telephone or by email.

English language and maths requirement
Normally GCSE English language and Maths at grade C, or 4 under the new grading system. Key Skills Level 2 may be used in lieu of GCSE English and Mathematics.

Non-EU international students who need a student visa to study in the UK should check our web pages on UKVI-compliant English language requirements. The University also provides pre-sessional English language courses to help you meet the English language requirements.

Helping you meet the entry requirements
We may be able to help you meet the requirements for admission by offering you the opportunity to study one or more Summer University modules, some of which can be studied by distance learning.

Alternative degree with integrated foundation year
If you are unable to achieve the minimum admission requirements for Year 1 entry you could, subject to eligibility, join one of our degree courses with an integrated foundation year.

Secure a guaranteed course place now*
Guaranteed Place Scheme (for UK/EU students only)

If you have completed Level 3 qualifications (for example AS Levels, BTEC Nationals) and have at least five GCSEs at grade 4 or above, including English and mathematics, you may be eligible for a guaranteed place on a degree course with foundation year in your chosen subject whilst still working towards meeting the conditions required for a course with higher entry requirements.
Find out more and check your eligibility

Direct entry to later years
If you have previously studied at higher education level (for example, a foundation degree, HNC, HND or one or more years at degree level at another institution) you may request direct entry to Year 2 or year 3 of this degree.

Mature applicants
We welcome applications from mature students (aged over 21) who can demonstrate, through portfolio/written work and relevant experience, that they have developed cognitive and technical skills through their life experiences.

For additional information please see the entry requirements in our admissions section

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country

You can gain considerable knowledge from work, volunteering and life. Under recognition of prior learning (RPL) you may be awarded credit for this which can be credited towards the course you want to study.
Find out more about RPL


What is Unistats?

How to understand the Unistats data

Course information


  • Length: 3 years (or 4 including a work placement)

More full-time details


  • Up to 6 years

More part-time details

  • Daytime
  • Enrolment date: September
  • Admission enquiries: 01642 738800

Contact details

Further information