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BA (Hons) Fashion

  • Duration: 3 or 4 years full-time
  • Placement year: Optional 1 year
  • Course code: W230 (UCAS)
  • Institution code: A66 (UCAS)

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Overview

This course gives you an opportunity to merge traditional skills and craftsmanship with contemporary cutting edge technology and ethical practice, essential in today’s ever-changing fashion world.

Fashion course information

Our course responds quickly to changing demands and opportunities and we have a reputation for producing ‘industry-ready’ graduates.

From concept to realisation, on BA (Hons) Fashion at AUB, you’ll experiment, interrogate, and develop design practises appropriate to your individual design philosophy. You’ll creatively explore traditional and modern techniques, cutting edge digital fashion technology, craftsmanship, product development and presentation. You’ll investigate connections between concepts of dress, fashion and the body as a site for artistic expression.

The social and ethical climate of fashion is a critical force; it’s central to course debate and practice. How we understand fashion’s impact will inform creative solutions and help you to become effective change makers for a more sustainable and inclusive world.

AUB Fashion are award winners in innovation, with a portfolio of student successes which is internationally recognised through graduate destination, exciting industry collaboration and inspirational speakers integrated into the DNA of the course.

During your time at AUB you’ll construct a unique portfolio of skills to support your career launch. We celebrate your individuality and will help you to realise a tailored path within the fashion industry and community at this critical time in history.

You may choose to complete your degree in one of the following named awards:

  • BA (Hons) Fashion (Design)
  • BA (Hons) Fashion (Design Technology)
  • BA (Hons) Fashion (Menswear)
  • BA (Hons) Fashion (Product Design)

Course duration

3 or 4 years (full-time)

Placement

Option of a 1-year placement

UCAS course code

W230

UCAS institution code

A66

Placement year

All undergraduate courses at AUB offer an optional placement year, to be taken between your second and third years of study.

If you’re unsure about this optional placement, you don’t need to decide now. Once you’re here and studying with us, the course team will discuss the placement options with you, so when the time comes, you can make a decision that’s right for you.

If you’re required to have a Student Visa to study in the UK, it won’t be possible to undertake the one-year placement option; there’ll be other opportunities for you to engage with industry during your study at AUB.

Level 4 (first year)

First year introduces creative exploration and skill set submersion. It focusses on fundamental skills as an enriching foundation for your student journey.

It’s comprised of three skill-based units with intensive design development, pattern cutting, construction and fashion textiles sessions. It’s underpinned by contextual, social and ethical debates and an introduction to digital fashion software to support your sustainable practise.

As you immerse yourself in university life, you’ll be encouraged to explore your design individuality (DNA), develop confidence in technical problem-solving and identify strengths, interests, and areas of specialism.

With a strong sense of course and campus community, collaboration is encouraged. You’ll work with students from other year groups to expand your understanding and emerging practise. This allows you to engage with a broad range of experiences to support specialist decisions in the future.

Level 5 (second year)

Level 5 prioritises innovation, market awareness and industry practise. Building on your knowledge of fundamental rules from Level 4 you are now encouraged to challenge them, critique the status quo, and innovate solutions to problematics within fashion industry and culture.

The 3D Image and Innovation unit offers a first opportunity to explore creative pattern cutting, develop knowledge of digital fashion software and presentation. You continue to explore your design ‘identity’ which is foundational to your unique design philosophy.

This is followed by Fashion Engineering; a technical unit where you discover the intricacies of tailoring, technical drawing, working with archives, and preparation for communicating with industry professionals. You are encouraged to question existing practices and look for new solutions, exploring diversity and emotionally considerate design as practice.

Level 5 concludes with the Industry Practise unit, offering the opportunity of UK or international work experience or participation in a ‘Live Project’ collaborating and designing for a high-end brand or design company. Recent collaborations have included Vivienne Westwood, Cos and luxury British heritage brands.

If you opt for an industry placement, you’ll be assisted in finding an internship and supported throughout to meaningfully connect experience to university study. The course also offers international student exchange. Recent placements have included Paco Rabanne, Cos, Vivienne Westwood, Christopher Raeburn, Victoria Beckham, Florence and Fred, H&M, Coast and Clarkes.

This unit offers flexibility of choice and experience in preparation for ‘real world’ employment or to encounter a different cultural or educational environment if you wish.

Level 6 (third year)

Level 6 consolidates skills developed through previous levels in preparation for graduation and your career launch. It’s considered by graduates as the most challenging and exciting time of their university experience.

You’ll focus on a specialist area of study related to a named award. Your Final Major Project is a self-determined body of industry-ready work aligned to your career plan. This is underpinned by a Research Project interrogating a topic relevant to your practice.

The Personal Branding unit is an opportunity to prepare and present your portfolio of creative work and exhibit the exciting innovation you have mastered throughout your time at AUB. It helps you to cohesively communicate your ambition, innovation and understanding of content and context in a professional portfolio of practice to meet the challenges of employment or further study.

2023 – Graduate Fashion Week

  • Lucy James was named winner of the AUB catwalk

2022 – Graduate Fashion Week

  • WINNER Zachary Fornelius: GFW Fashion Innovation Award
  • WINNER Russia Prior: GFW AUB Catwalk Show
  • HIGHLY COMMENDED Vera Geszti: GFW AUB Catwalk Show
  • SHORTLISTED Alex Petrou: GFW Fashion Innovation Award
  • SHORTLISTED Zachary Fornelius: GFW Hilary Alexander Sustainability Trailblazer award
  • SHORTLISTED Jack Pluckrose: GFW Sports and Leisurewear award
  • SHORTLISTED Zachary Fornelius: GFW Fashion Range Plan Award
  • SHORTLISTED Alex Petrou: GFW Fashion New Media Award
  • SHORTLISTED Russia Prior: GFW Fashion Concept Award
  • SHORTLISTED Freddy Woodroffe: GFW YKK Accessories award
  • SELECTED Alex Petrou: GFW Shop Trail; Samsung X
  • SELECTED Jessica Horton: GFW Brands’ Portfolio Day; Burberry
  • SELECTED Ella Clow: GFW Brands’ Portfolio Day; ASOS
  • SELECTED Alice Fraser: GFW Brands’ Portfolio Day; ASOS
  • SELECTED Russia Prior: GFW Brands’ Portfolio Day; ASOS

2020 – Graduate Fashion Week

2021 – Graduate Fashion Week

2018 – Graduate Fashion Week

Course team

On the BA (Hons) Fashion course, you’ll benefit from the expert guidance of our experienced teaching staff. You can read more about their specialisms by exploring their profiles below.

Penny Norman Course Leader (MA) | Senior Lecturer BA (Hons)

MA, PGCE-FE, BA

Aston Baker Technician Demonstrator – Fashion and Textiles (Digital)
Email me abaker@aub.ac.uk

It's critical that as a next generation designer, you become a pioneer in innovation and change, and explore new and better ways of working, push creative boundaries, and blend modern technology, with traditional craftsmanship, and ethical practice.

The future of the industry is about making conscious decisions and generating innovative and sustainable fashion products that have a specific place in a current and contemporary market that consumers respect and aspire to own.

Elena Crehan, Course Leader

Watch the course video

Course leader Elena Crehan explains more about what you can expect from studying BA (Hons) Fashion at AUB.

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Application process

Once you've found the perfect Undergraduate course, you can apply to study via UCAS, including direct entry applications to second and third year.

When applying through UCAS, use the institution code A66 for courses taught at Arts University Bournemouth. For courses based at Bournemouth and Poole College, use code B49. We'll then use your completed UCAS form to make decisions about your application. You can find out more on entry requirements in our apply section.

When you apply to one of our courses, it's important that you help us get a good picture of both you and your work – so you'll need a great personal statement. We want to know more about why you're interested in the course, your key influences, and what you hope to do after your studies.

If you're invited for an interview, many of our courses will ask to see a portfolio of your work so we can get more insight into your ideas and abilities. To help you, we've created guidelines outlining what we expect from your portfolio for each course.

The fee that you pay the Arts University Bournemouth provides the necessary equipment and training for you to complete your course.

You may also choose to buy some items of personal equipment such as a laptop or tablet computer, but this is not required; desktop and laptop computers are available for you to use in common study areas, including a loan system in the Library.

If you decide to undertake an optional placement year, the tuition fee is £1,850. This is subject to inflationary increases based on government policy, and providing you progress through the course in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

For the majority of our courses, we'll ask you to digitally submit a portfolio as part of the application process.

Portfolios should show examples of your work – both finished and work in progress – that demonstrate your interests and skills. We expect to see around 10 slides/images in your portfolio that shows your identity as an artist.

If we ask for a digital portfolio then we'll give you 30 days to submit it. Sometimes we'll need a portfolio submitted quickly if there's a UCAS set deadline approaching, but if you need more time, just let us know and we'll try to help.

We've created specific portfolio guidelines for each of our courses, you can take a look at these below.

If you've applied to study an online postgraduate (MA) degree, please refer to the AUB Online portfolio guidelines.

None of our courses currently require an interview.

The only course requiring an audition is BA (Hons) Acting and if you're invited to one you'll have at least 10 days notice.

Studios and resources

Our dedicated studios are equipped with a range of state-of-the-art industry-standard specialist machinery.

You’ll have access to Lectra Modaris and CLO 3D technology, three digital studios and three working studios, plus a dedicated sewing room. You’ll also use a seminar and theory room for lectures and tutorials.

Students at work in Fashion studios

Fashion Studios

The fashion studios offer an extensive portfolio of machinery and kit to support your design, manufacture and...

Zachary Fornelius

Digital Fashion

AUB was one of the first UK Universities to implement and deliver the exciting 3D prototyping technology back in 2005...

Innovation Studio, photographed by Richard Bryant. Photo of an exterior wall with two reverse-L shaped windows and three semi-circle panels visible. A person walks past towards the right.

Innovation Studio

The Innovation Studio operates as a lab for creative technologies, a nucleus for start-ups and enterprises and an industry engagement hub.

Students working at computers in a library. A set of stairs leads up to a second landing with a balcony running along.

The Library

The Library at AUB holds an excellent range of print and online collections

Ten rows of empty seating viewed from the front of a large lecture theatre.

Lecture Theatres and Seminar Rooms

We have a number of lecture theatres and seminar room scattered around campus to assist students with their studies.

Small glass cabinet with a number of colourful plastic objects on display inside.

MoDiP

MoDiP is the UK's leading resource for the study and interpretation of design in plastics and specialist research resource

Student wearing safety goggles using a machine in a workshop.

3D Workshop

Our 3D workshops with manual and digital manufacturing equipment and computers

A member of AUB staff talking about a camera with a student at the Central Media Store counter.

Central Media Store

The Central Media store houses a diverse array of equipment, offering students the means to craft and capture...

A model sits on a chair in the centre of a room while a group of artists draw them.

Drawing Studio

Our iconic, blue Drawing Studio is used by student from all courses and was designed by Alumnus, Sir Peter Cook​

Four banks of desks in a computer suite with monitors on them.

Digital Suites

Our Digital Suites offer a digital post-production facility and digital teaching space.

Person stands by a table. Two printing presses are in the foreground.

Printroom

The Printroom and Passiv Haus are two great facilities available to all AUB student

Three people working on projects in a print room.

Letterpress and Bindery

The Letterpress and Bindery studio is a central resource, where students can learn and explore bookbinding and letterpress printing.

Teaching, learning and assessment

The course combines both independent learning and taught sessions throughout all levels.

Each unit is assessed separately, and the assessment forms part of the unit. Assessment both provides a measure of your achievement, and also gives you regular feedback on how your learning is developing.

Taught sessions are designed to support, underpin and inform independent learning and are delivered in a variety of styles including a diverse range of ongoing practical workshops, demonstrations, lectures, group and individual tutorials, seminars, critiques, unit briefings and optional study visits. These are delivered by the course team and supplemented by visiting practitioners from the fashion industry.

Teaching is directed at supporting individual engagement in learning, although there are opportunities to work in teams to enable you to learn the value of peer cooperation. As members of the cohort, you're all active participants in learning and teaching and through this the sharing of good practice is established. Peer learning is facilitated through group critiques and feedback sessions, collaborative projects and more informally within the studio environment.

The course team has developed a variety of learning and teaching methods which support different learning styles, inclusivity and access to learning. The main focus for the learning and teaching methods is through the assignment(s) undertaken for each unit, which reflect the level of study.

The course team has developed team teaching opportunities, both within the core team and in collaboration with Visiting Tutors and industry professionals, to enhance learning opportunities and to further your knowledge and awareness of industry practices and expectations. The team also regularly attend new and updated training, seminars and conferences in order to keep delivery current and in line with industry requirements.

The study time allocated to each unit in the course incorporates a balance of formal teaching, tutorial support and independent learning. The course is structured progressively to provide increased opportunities for independent learning as you reach the later stages of the course. The progressive promotion of independent learning and self-reflection encourages anticipated maturity and allows you to direct learning towards individual goals. Emphasis is placed upon reflective practice where you'll be expected to progressively take personal responsibility for your learning.

Contact hours include all scheduled teaching sessions, but also supervised time in the workshop or studio. In line with national guidance, we include in our calculation of contact hours all the time which is scheduled in the studio for independent study which is also supported by staff (either academic staff, or technicians).

The information provided below gives the proportion of your study time which constitutes contact hours. Where there are optional routes through the course, we've used the figures for the most popular option.

For every unit of your course, we'll inform you of what you are expected to learn, what you have to submit, how your work will be assessed, and the deadline for presenting your work for assessment. This is made available through Unit Information, which is on your course blog.

You'll receive a final mark for each unit in the form of a percentage, which will be recorded on your formal record of achievement (transcript). Each component of assessment is graded using a notched marking scale, whereby only certain marks are used within each grade. The only marks available within any ten-point band are *2, *5 and *8 (e.g. 62, 65, 68). These marks correspond to a low, mid, and high level of achievement within each grade band.

All learning outcomes must be passed to successfully complete the unit.

On successful completion of your Honours degree course, you'll be awarded a degree classification based on your unit marks. The final classification is determined using all unit marks at Levels 5 and 6 using two different algorithms, which are detailed in the HE Student Regulations. If the two algorithms produce different results, you'll be awarded the higher class of degree.

If you've joined Level 6 through either the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) route or having completed a Foundation Degree (FdA), the final classification is determined using only your unit marks at Level 6.

For further information on assessment, progression, awards and classifications, please visit viewpoint.aub.ac.uk.

What our graduates are doing

Graduates from this course have gone on to work with UK and International brands such as Burberry, Ralph Lauren and Net-a-Porter.

Our graduates work as designers, pattern cutters, garment technologists, product developers, fashion buyers, merchandisers, promoters and more. Here are some examples of recent graduate career destinations:

  • Design for Ralph Lauren New York, Missoni Italy, Christopher Raeburn, Victoria Beckham, Roksanda, Erdem,
    Vivienne Westwood, COS and River Island Kids
  • Buyer/Product Developer for Ted Baker, Debenhams, Mothercare, Tommy Hilfiger, House of Fraser and Arcadia
  • Digital Technologist for Burberry, Vivienne Westwood, COS, H&M Stockholm, Turnbull & Asser and F&F
  • Fashion Textiles for Melissa Oberdash and Celine
  • Stylists at White Room and Inca Productions, or working freelance
  • Buyers/merchandisers at Arcadia Group, Miss Selfridge and Signet
  • Working at Condé Nast
  • Sales and Marketing roles at Free People, 3rd Rock, GP and Baker Eyewear

The unique nature of the BA (Hons) Fashion programme helps you learn skills and gain knowledge that is transferable to many different roles across the fashion industry.

Our fashion graduates secure jobs in fashion design, buying, merchandising and visual merchandising, as well as trend and fashion forecasting, fashion journalism and PR, freelance work or setting up their own business.

People on a catwalk

Daniel Rynne – BA (Hons) Fashion

My collection is based on the work of Dorothea Lange and the Farm Security Administration...

Male on a catwalk

Sophie Whatling – BA (Hons) Fashion

My collection is inspired by illustration and artwork. A lot of it is based on mental health...

Trips and visits

As part of your course you may also get the opportunity to take part in course trips.

Previous trips have included:

  • Beijing
  • New York
  • Paris
  • London (V&A Museum)

*These trips are optional and some may incur additional costs

Latest from BA (Hons) Fashion

See more of our student work

This dynamic course gives you the skills needed for a career in the fast-moving world of 21st-century fashion.

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