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Fashion is the second most polluting industry in the world, second only to oil. As the planet struggles for economic and environmental balance the need for the fashion industry to address and adapt to these demands is becoming essential. The Fashion Design (Sustainable and Ethical) Master's will equip you with the knowledge to become an expert in ethics and sustainability, and begin and exciting career in fashion.

If you are passionate about fashion and driven by your conviction in responsible fashion practice, then we want to hear from you. Applicants of this course will be accepted from a range of disciplines if you can demonstrate an authentic, principled approach to the value of ethical and sustainable fashion . You will work with integrity and vision and possess the ambition necessary to make an impact on the wider world.

Design courses at Northumbria are ranked within the UK top 10, and we are renowned for our pioneering and innovative course frameworks which meet the demands of industry and produce graduates who are ready to step straight into employment.

This is a flexible course, suited to those who wish to further their professional practice with social, critical, technological and ecological dimensions within a self-directed project. There is no requirement that you come from a design background.

This MA Fashion Design (sustainable and ethical fashion) offers students the opportunity to contribute to responsible design systems and practice. We want to see you lead the way with fresh ideas that can truly innovate in the industry.

We will give you the tools to be future leaders, with an in-depth understanding of the economic, environmental, and social factors behind the adoption of circular economy principles, fair trade plus human and animal welfare.

The fashion industry is changing, as pressure mounts for fashion leaders to implement responsible codes of practice. Consumers increasingly expect companies to have responsible principles throughout the supply chain, from protecting their workers with a fair living wage and safe working standards, to the ensuring their products do not end up in land fill.

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. You will be able to create fashion products with sustainable, social and commercial value.

Our students enjoy coveted access to unrivalled industry links, forged and maintained over six decades, and the opportunities are endless for committed and enthusiastic students. Our global links include fashion companies such as H&M, Tommy Hilfiger and Barbour to name just a few.

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

You will also have access to premium, industry facilities which will prepare you for work in industry from the get go. Facilities include a photography studio, machine room, print room and studio space, you can have a closer look in the facilities tab.

We currently have alumnus working across the world for countless global labels and count Scott Henshall , the youngest designer to show at London Fashion Week and Creative Director of luxury British fashion house, Mulberry among our Alumni. 

We also offer other MA Fashion masters including: MA Fashion Design (Performancewear), MA Fashion Design (Menswear), MA Fashion Design (Womenswear) and MA Fashion Design. 

 

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 2021 or January 2022

Fee Information

Module Information

Videos / Fashion at Northumbria University, Newcastle

Take a look at one of our student fashion shows, exhibited live at London fashion week plus hear Dr. Alana James discuss the highlights of the Fashion MA (sustainability and ethical) in a master's in a minute (or so).

Funding and Scholarships

Discover the funding options available to you.

Discover more / Explore Northumbria University

Take a look at what Northumbria has to offer and discover what studying with us can do for you.

Entry Requirements 2021/22

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 2021/22 Entry

Full UK Fee: £7,350

Full EU Fee: £16,000

Full International Fee: £16,000



Scholarships and Discounts

Click here for UK, EU and International Scholarships scholarship, fees, and funding information.


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

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* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

How to Apply

Please use the Apply Now button at the top of this page to submit your application.

Certain applications may need to be submitted via an external application system, such as UCAS, Lawcabs or DfE Apply.

The Apply Now button will redirect you to the relevant website if this is the case.

You can find further application advice, such as what to include in your application and what happens after you apply, on our Admissions Hub Admissions | Northumbria University



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. Recent industrial collaborations have included projects with Lakeland, Tucano, Kitchen Craft, Thermo Fisher and the Tuke Insitute.

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

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/ MA Fashion Design/ MA Fashion Design: Performancewear/Womenswear/Menswear 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 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.

MA Sustainable and Ethical Fashion 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 challenges of responsible practice within the fashion industry. 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. Recent industrial collaborations have included projects with Lakeland, Tucano, Kitchen Craft, Thermo Fisher and the Tuke Insitute.

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

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/ MA Fashion Design/ MA Fashion Design: Performancewear/Womenswear/Menswear 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 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.

MA Sustainable and Ethical Fashion 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 challenges of responsible practice within the fashion industry. 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

All information on this course page is accurate at the time of viewing.

Courses starting in 2021 are offered as a mix of online and face to face teaching due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to flex accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

Students will be required to attend campus as far as restrictions allow. Contact time will increase as restrictions ease, or decrease, potentially to a full online offer, should restrictions increase.

Our online activity will be delivered through Blackboard Ultra, enabling collaboration, connection and engagement with materials and people.

 

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 
www.northumbria.ac.uk/exp

Admissions Terms and Conditions - northumbria.ac.uk/terms
Fees and Funding - northumbria.ac.uk/fees
Admissions Policy - northumbria.ac.uk/adpolicy
Admissions Complaints Policy - northumbria.ac.uk/complaints



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