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In an increasingly eco-conscious and fast-changing world, where resources need to be managed effectively and responsibly, the fashion industry needs leaders who are passionate and committed to these ideals.

This course offers students the opportunity to contribute to responsible design systems and practice within the industry. It aims to provide future leaders with an in-depth understanding of the economic, environmental, and social factors behind the adoption of circular economy principles, fair trade and human and animal welfare. The programme responds to significant industry, consumer and political demand for graduates who can effectively apply professional knowledge and communication skills to responsible design practice, helping to create fashion products with sustainable, social and commercial value.

Suited to those who wish to further their professional practice with social, critical, technological and ecological dimensions within a self-directed project.

In an increasingly eco-conscious and fast-changing world, where resources need to be managed effectively and responsibly, the fashion industry needs leaders who are passionate and committed to these ideals.

This course offers students the opportunity to contribute to responsible design systems and practice within the industry. It aims to provide future leaders with an in-depth understanding of the economic, environmental, and social factors behind the adoption of circular economy principles, fair trade and human and animal welfare. The programme responds to significant industry, consumer and political demand for graduates who can effectively apply professional knowledge and communication skills to responsible design practice, helping to create fashion products with sustainable, social and commercial value.

Suited to those who wish to further their professional practice with social, critical, technological and ecological dimensions within a self-directed project.

Course Information

Level of Study
Postgraduate

Mode of Study
1 year full-time

Department
Northumbria School of Design

Location
City Campus, Northumbria University

City
Newcastle

Start
September 2020

Fee Information

Module Information

Book an Open Day / Experience Fashion Design

Visit an Open Day to get an inside view of what it's really like to study Fashion Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

You will study a series of interconnected modules over three semesters. These modules will equip you with the latest theoretical, practical and professional knowledge, skills and applied thinking, primarily through project-based learning experiences.

Approximately two-thirds of your taught sessions will be studio-based, following a ‘learn, explore further and apply’ structure, encouraging you to take risks and to cross traditional boundaries. The modules have been designed to reflect the realities of the design industry and working environments you will encounter on graduation.

On top of this you will have access to extensive digital learning resources, including recorded lectures and seminars, assessment feedback, and opportunities to engage in online discussions with your tutors and peers.

One key feature of that runs throughout the Masters is Personal Development Planning (PDP), which you will craft in close collaboration with your tutors. You’ll use your PDP to record what you’ve done and to plan what you want to achieve, enabling you to recognise your development needs and progress towards your unique goals. You will also develop your skills in reflective practice and collaboration, both of which are key to making an impact in the professional world.

Assessed outcomes will be of an original and innovative nature ensuring findings are at the forefront of the discipline and future zeitgeist.

Student Portfolios / Hints and Tips

Take a look at Portfolios of our current students.

Book an Open Day / Experience Fashion Design

Visit an Open Day to get an inside view of what it's really like to study Fashion Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

You will learn from award-winning, research-active academic staff who bring a wealth of professional experience from the world of fashion to Northumbria. They have worked as successful designers globally for some of the world’s biggest brands including Vivienne Tam, Vivienne Westwood, Tommy Hilfiger, Abercrombie & Fitch and Nigel Cabourn.

These innovative designers will not only inspire you, they will support you. The Programme Leader and Modules Tutors will all be accessible and ready to help you reach your full potential.

You will also learn from our collaborative partners from over 60 years of delivering fashion education we have built up industry links that are second-to-none, including Barbour, H&M, Gap, Abercrombie & Fitch and Pentland. Designers are lining up to work on collaborative projects with students on this course, which we’ve developed specifically to respond to industry needs.

Our collaborative work with industry partners creates a space for future thinking, which enhances the curriculum and enables students to graduate into high profile employment both in the UK and internationally.

Inspirational Staff / Dr. Alana James

My area of expertise lies within sustainable and ethical fashion, utilising design tools and methods to provide solutions for a more responsible fashion industry. Approaching complex issues from a multi-stakeholder approach, my strengths include engaging with fashion consumers and applying design strategies to encourage small shifts in behaviour towards large-scale sustainable change.

Book an Open Day / Experience Fashion Design

Visit an Open Day to get an inside view of what it's really like to study Fashion Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

Northumbria School of Design has been delivering Fashion education for over 60 years, and the facilities we have invested in are truly exceptional.

As a postgraduate student you will have access to all our state-of-the-art fashion technology. You will work in dedicated studio space where you can take inspiration from postgraduates across all design disciplines.

The MA at Northumbria’s Fashion Laboratory aims to create world-class designers and communicators in fashion, who have a global understanding of technological developments in materials and processes and how these will energise the next phase of Future Fashion Synergies.

Responsible design in either practice or commercial processes evidences a growing need to act in a restorative, regenerative manner beyond the ideology of sustainability. On the course you will have access to a specialist design laboratory to experiment with new processes and understandings for future fashion paradigms. This will support you to understand and reflect on ‘how’ and ‘why’ you design, enabling you to develop greater impact through your professional practice.

Facilities / Fashion at Northumbria

Book an Open Day / Experience Fashion Design

Visit an Open Day to get an inside view of what it's really like to study Fashion Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

By sharing our research expertise in fashion, craft, smart/intelligent materials, sustainability, international development, ethical practice and supply chains, we aim to produce innovative and original designers ready to shape and challenge the future fashion industry.

You will develop research-informed methods of understanding the complexity inherent in real-world situations, to enable you to make better decisions, advance your practice, and add to new knowledge in your field.

You will be inspired by ongoing staff research and industry experience, and you will be aligned to the tutor with the most relevant expertise to support you through your major project.

Your specialism in Sustainable and Ethical Fashion will be underpinned by the generic research-led contextual modules. These will provide you with a grounding in research methods, creative thinking, cross-cultural communication, contemporary influences on design, reflective practice, innovation and entrepreneurship, all through multidisciplinary and team-based collaboration.

Research / Design

Discover more about the research currently taking place within Design, and across the University within our multidisciplinary research themes. Feeling inspired? Join us to make a remarkable impact on tomorrow.

Book an Open Day / Experience Fashion Design

Visit an Open Day to get an inside view of what it's really like to study Fashion Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

You will graduate with the knowledge and expertise required to become a world-class designer, a design change-maker who can inspire and develop products with a high level of integrity and commercial value.

Contemporary design practice is evolving due to new technologies and changing contexts of design innovation. This means there are more opportunities for graduates with advanced masterly understanding of how fashion and industrial design can collaborate in order to respond to future human and planet well-being.

You will hold a critical awareness of current issues, an analytical knowledge of relevant craft skills, processes and technologies, and the entrepreneurial skills to evaluate and commercialise creative opportunities.

You will have the opportunity to collaborate with organisations from across the fashion and creative industries through your project work, allowing you to build your professional skills, your portfolio, and your network of contacts.

As well as supporting those seeking to develop independent fashion labels, this course will prepare you for a wide range of career opportunities within the fashion and creative industries and in roles as diverse as fashion designer, fashion director, stylist, buyer, account manager, visual merchandiser, fashion editor, industry commentator, or trend forecaster.

Fashion Alumni

Meet some of the inspirational alumni who are making an impact after graduating from Fashion courses at Northumbria.

Book an Open Day / Experience Fashion Design

Visit an Open Day to get an inside view of what it's really like to study Fashion Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

Entry Requirements 2020/21

Standard Entry

Applicants should normally have:

A minimum of a 2:2 honours degree in a relevant discipline. Applicants with appropriate work experience and/or a relevant professional qualification will be considered.

International qualifications:

If you have studied a non UK qualification, you can see how your qualifications compare to the standard entry criteria, by selecting the country that you received the qualification in, from our country pages. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

English language requirements:

International applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

 *The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS.  You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Fees and Funding 2020/21 Entry

Full UK Fee: £7,170

Full EU Fee: £7,170

Full International Fee: £15,500

ADDITIONAL COSTS

All costs are mandatory: General programme - Design Tools, Media, A3 Sketchbooks, Materials relevant to student line of research . To be purchased annually Module specific DE7008 and DE7009 - Toile and pattern construction tools relevant to Student individual project needs. To be purchased once DE7003 - Relevant student material needs to complete specific project. To be purchased once

Scholarships and discounts

Click here for Home/EU scholarships and discounts information

Click here for International scholarships and discounts information

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* By submitting your information you are consenting to your data being processed by Northumbria University (as Data Controller) and Campus Management Corp. (acting as Data Processor). To see the University's privacy policy please click here

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

DE7001 -

Design Thinking (Core,30 Credits)

You will learn concepts and principles of design thinking delivered in three knowledge portfolios; creative thinking, research principles and contemporary influences on design, these fields of knowledge are supported and informed by academic staff research specialisms.
Creative thinking methods will enable you to frame problems from multiple perspectives and synthesise new opportunities and possibilities from interrelated factors. You will develop a practical knowledge of advanced design research methods. Through contemporary influences you will learn to situate design in the contemporary world and identify the impact of external factors on your own design practice.
The underpinning knowledge and understanding will be applied in the context of a team project with industry or other collaborating organisation, which will help you learn effective ways of working in multi-cultural/multi-disciplinary teams. Recent industrial collaborations have included Procter and Gamble, The Centre for Process Innovation National Centre for Printable Electronics and the Academic Health Science Network.

Through this module you will learn about three fields of design knowledge described above, which you will interpret relative to your own practice and in line with your PDP. You will apply this knowledge in co-creative practice and will reflect on your experience to summarise the utility and limitations of methods employed.
You will appreciate the transferability of design thinking and will be able apply your knowledge in different contexts and domains.

More information

DE7002 -

Design Process (Core,30 Credits)

You will learn concepts, methods and principles aligned with three knowledge portfolios: Action research and reflective practice, cross cultural collaboration, innovation and enterprise. Whilst grounded in a literature review these fields of knowledge are also supported and informed by academic staff research specialisms.

You will learn about action research methods and will build your own action research process models and recording templates that you will apply in practice to facilitate your development as a reflective practitioner. In parallel you will learn about theories of enterprise and innovation and will apply this knowledge in action by exploring business models and intellectual property. You will also learn about cross-cultural collaboration by applying relevant concepts from literature whilst working in multi-cultural teams.

The underpinning knowledge and understanding will be applied in the context of a collaborative project with industry or other organisation, which will help you learn effective ways of working in multi-cultural/multi-disciplinary teams.

Through this module you will learn about three fields of design knowledge described above, which you will interpret relative to your own practice and in line with your PDP. You will apply this knowledge in co-creative practice and will reflect on your experience to summarise the utility and limitations of methods employed.
You will appreciate the transferability of design thinking and will be able apply your knowledge in different contexts and domains.

• General point the word ‘practice’ and ‘portfolio’ in the module can be interpreted as ‘luxury sector’ and ‘illustrated document’ respectively for Luxury brand management students.

More information

DE7003 -

Project / Thesis (Core,60 Credits)

In this module you will learn to advance your Research Through Design and take a directional approach to your personal design brief.
You will develop your reflective practice and reach insights and analytical conclusions in your chosen field of study as outlined in your Personal Development Plan (PDP).
You will synthesise the learning from semesters 1 and 2 to create a Major Design Project and Thesis. These will evidence an analysis of advanced academic research, debates, and exploratory practice in the production of theories that demonstrate real world discipline specific value within an industry context.
You will be expected to take an increasingly autonomous approach to your studies at this stage in developing, embedding and clarifying personally developed research themes theories and experiences that will be realised through either Option 1: a focussed major design project (Component A) and written report (Component B) that will embed reflection as part of the design process or
Option 2: a design thesis detailing your engagement with your PDP and reflection on your learning.
Your thesis will evidence your advanced design practice and written communication of theories and concepts appropriate at Masters level and relevant to both your chosen pathway (as described below) and more specifically your PDP.

MA Design will enable you to take control of your design direction and align your own passion and motivation with the value you create for business and society. You will learn to to hone your capabilities, refine the focus of your design contribution and create your ideal future professional self.

MA Design Management will give you the knowledge and tools to orchestrate design thinking and process at a strategic level in organisations. You will build a meta view of transferable design knowledge that will enable you to recognise the value of design within organisations and to provide effective leadership and management of design roles. You will learn to navigate complexity, and develop your understanding of how to build and manage organisational growth through brand, new product and service opportunities and strategic innovation.

On completion you will have the skills and abilities to make a positive impact in the design industry, and the knowledge and experience to be able to make purposeful contribution to the world.

More information

DE7010 -

Fashion Product Lifecycle (Core,30 Credits)

During Fashion Product Lifecycle (DE7010) students will have the opportunity to explore the environmental and social impact of fashion products within the context of the global supply chain. From fibre to consumer, the garment lifecycle is a complex and integrated system requiring extensive knowledge and understanding before innovative, more responsible solutions can be proposed. It is with this depth and rigour that this module begins to investigate alternative business models and lifecycles reflective of contemporary challenges in fashion including the circular, second-hand and sharing economy methodologies.

Students will critically examine existing paradigms in fashion through their creative process, implementing transferable skills such as research principles and creative thinking methods in a move towards becoming a reflective practitioner. Analysing the three key stages of the product lifecycle: design, manufacture and use, opportunities for change will be explored utilsing appropriate design tools and methods.

This module reflects the changing landscape of the fashion industry, moving forward from dated linear models of production and consumption, towards the adoption of principles to address ethical and sustainable challenges within a fashion context. Long associated with negative environmental and social impact, this module facilitates students in their exploration of alternative innovation models, emerging technologies and progressive system solutions.

More information

DE7011 -

Responsible Design (Core,30 Credits)

During Responsible Design (DE7011) students will have the opportunity to develop an extensive understanding of the role design can play in creating systemic change in a linear fashion model (i.e. take, make, dispose). During the critical analysis of alternative processes, including the circular, sharing and second-hand economies, the potential these approaches could have to reduce negative environmental and social impact will be explored.

Through the application of innovative design strategies, students will begin to develop a series of innovative solutions to address the contemporary societal challenges currently facing the fashion industry. These methods will include: design for circularity, emotionally durable design, design for behaviour change and the implementation of product life-extension strategies (re-use, repair, recondition etc.)

Students will work collaboratively utilising approaches such as co-creation and participatory design in the development of multi-stakeholder cooperation and a human-centric approach necessary in the principles of responsible design. Considering design as a key-tool for change, this module aims to embed knowledge and create informed, progressive change-makers, prepared to disrupt the way fashion is made, consumed and disposed.

More information

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

DE7001 -

Design Thinking (Core,30 Credits)

You will learn concepts and principles of design thinking delivered in three knowledge portfolios; creative thinking, research principles and contemporary influences on design, these fields of knowledge are supported and informed by academic staff research specialisms.
Creative thinking methods will enable you to frame problems from multiple perspectives and synthesise new opportunities and possibilities from interrelated factors. You will develop a practical knowledge of advanced design research methods. Through contemporary influences you will learn to situate design in the contemporary world and identify the impact of external factors on your own design practice.
The underpinning knowledge and understanding will be applied in the context of a team project with industry or other collaborating organisation, which will help you learn effective ways of working in multi-cultural/multi-disciplinary teams. Recent industrial collaborations have included Procter and Gamble, The Centre for Process Innovation National Centre for Printable Electronics and the Academic Health Science Network.

Through this module you will learn about three fields of design knowledge described above, which you will interpret relative to your own practice and in line with your PDP. You will apply this knowledge in co-creative practice and will reflect on your experience to summarise the utility and limitations of methods employed.
You will appreciate the transferability of design thinking and will be able apply your knowledge in different contexts and domains.

More information

DE7002 -

Design Process (Core,30 Credits)

You will learn concepts, methods and principles aligned with three knowledge portfolios: Action research and reflective practice, cross cultural collaboration, innovation and enterprise. Whilst grounded in a literature review these fields of knowledge are also supported and informed by academic staff research specialisms.

You will learn about action research methods and will build your own action research process models and recording templates that you will apply in practice to facilitate your development as a reflective practitioner. In parallel you will learn about theories of enterprise and innovation and will apply this knowledge in action by exploring business models and intellectual property. You will also learn about cross-cultural collaboration by applying relevant concepts from literature whilst working in multi-cultural teams.

The underpinning knowledge and understanding will be applied in the context of a collaborative project with industry or other organisation, which will help you learn effective ways of working in multi-cultural/multi-disciplinary teams.

Through this module you will learn about three fields of design knowledge described above, which you will interpret relative to your own practice and in line with your PDP. You will apply this knowledge in co-creative practice and will reflect on your experience to summarise the utility and limitations of methods employed.
You will appreciate the transferability of design thinking and will be able apply your knowledge in different contexts and domains.

• General point the word ‘practice’ and ‘portfolio’ in the module can be interpreted as ‘luxury sector’ and ‘illustrated document’ respectively for Luxury brand management students.

More information

DE7003 -

Project / Thesis (Core,60 Credits)

In this module you will learn to advance your Research Through Design and take a directional approach to your personal design brief.
You will develop your reflective practice and reach insights and analytical conclusions in your chosen field of study as outlined in your Personal Development Plan (PDP).
You will synthesise the learning from semesters 1 and 2 to create a Major Design Project and Thesis. These will evidence an analysis of advanced academic research, debates, and exploratory practice in the production of theories that demonstrate real world discipline specific value within an industry context.
You will be expected to take an increasingly autonomous approach to your studies at this stage in developing, embedding and clarifying personally developed research themes theories and experiences that will be realised through either Option 1: a focussed major design project (Component A) and written report (Component B) that will embed reflection as part of the design process or
Option 2: a design thesis detailing your engagement with your PDP and reflection on your learning.
Your thesis will evidence your advanced design practice and written communication of theories and concepts appropriate at Masters level and relevant to both your chosen pathway (as described below) and more specifically your PDP.

MA Design will enable you to take control of your design direction and align your own passion and motivation with the value you create for business and society. You will learn to to hone your capabilities, refine the focus of your design contribution and create your ideal future professional self.

MA Design Management will give you the knowledge and tools to orchestrate design thinking and process at a strategic level in organisations. You will build a meta view of transferable design knowledge that will enable you to recognise the value of design within organisations and to provide effective leadership and management of design roles. You will learn to navigate complexity, and develop your understanding of how to build and manage organisational growth through brand, new product and service opportunities and strategic innovation.

On completion you will have the skills and abilities to make a positive impact in the design industry, and the knowledge and experience to be able to make purposeful contribution to the world.

More information

DE7010 -

Fashion Product Lifecycle (Core,30 Credits)

During Fashion Product Lifecycle (DE7010) students will have the opportunity to explore the environmental and social impact of fashion products within the context of the global supply chain. From fibre to consumer, the garment lifecycle is a complex and integrated system requiring extensive knowledge and understanding before innovative, more responsible solutions can be proposed. It is with this depth and rigour that this module begins to investigate alternative business models and lifecycles reflective of contemporary challenges in fashion including the circular, second-hand and sharing economy methodologies.

Students will critically examine existing paradigms in fashion through their creative process, implementing transferable skills such as research principles and creative thinking methods in a move towards becoming a reflective practitioner. Analysing the three key stages of the product lifecycle: design, manufacture and use, opportunities for change will be explored utilsing appropriate design tools and methods.

This module reflects the changing landscape of the fashion industry, moving forward from dated linear models of production and consumption, towards the adoption of principles to address ethical and sustainable challenges within a fashion context. Long associated with negative environmental and social impact, this module facilitates students in their exploration of alternative innovation models, emerging technologies and progressive system solutions.

More information

DE7011 -

Responsible Design (Core,30 Credits)

During Responsible Design (DE7011) students will have the opportunity to develop an extensive understanding of the role design can play in creating systemic change in a linear fashion model (i.e. take, make, dispose). During the critical analysis of alternative processes, including the circular, sharing and second-hand economies, the potential these approaches could have to reduce negative environmental and social impact will be explored.

Through the application of innovative design strategies, students will begin to develop a series of innovative solutions to address the contemporary societal challenges currently facing the fashion industry. These methods will include: design for circularity, emotionally durable design, design for behaviour change and the implementation of product life-extension strategies (re-use, repair, recondition etc.)

Students will work collaboratively utilising approaches such as co-creation and participatory design in the development of multi-stakeholder cooperation and a human-centric approach necessary in the principles of responsible design. Considering design as a key-tool for change, this module aims to embed knowledge and create informed, progressive change-makers, prepared to disrupt the way fashion is made, consumed and disposed.

More information

Any Questions?

Our admissions team will be happy to help. They can be contacted on 0191 406 0901.

Contact Details for Applicants:

bc.applicantservices@northumbria.ac.uk

Current, Relevant and Inspiring

We continuously review and improve course content in consultation with our students and employers. To make sure we can inform you of any changes to your course register for updates on the course page.

Your Learning Experience find out about our distinctive approach at 
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Admissions Policy - northumbria.ac.uk/adpolicy
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