BA (Hons) in Fashion & Textiles Top-Up

    Full time
    1 Year
    University of Kent
This one-year programme, which is awarded and quality-assured by the University of Kent, enables you to convert your Level 5 HND or Foundation Degree qualification into a Level 6 full honours degree.

Throughout the year, you will develop either a full collection of between five to six outfits for fashion specialists, or a range of high level textile work for art, fashion or interiors. These will be developed from an initial creative concept through to the finished product and promoted for a specific market context. You will study computer aided design programmes and marketing tools to present your work professionally, and exhibit the finished work in a fashion show.

Equipping with the industry skills you will need upon successful completion of this programme, you will analyse the market and your workplace within it, creating a visual identity and employing professional communication methods. As part of the programme you will create a professional portfolio targeting the area of the industry you would like to work in.

Although this programme offers a natural progression route from the related Foundation Degree in Fashion and Textiles, we also welcome and encourage applications from students who have achieved a HND or Foundation Degree in fashion, textiles or a related subject at another college or university.


Teaching is predominantly practical, utilising methods such as demonstrations, studio workshops, group lectures, seminars and individual tutorials.

Assessment is largely coursework-based, with a small percentage of certain modules ‘exam’ or presentation-based. This will usually include a digital presentation of images of work where you will develop communication and professional practice skills.

The programme typically involves an average of 12 timetabled hours over two to three days per week during term time. This is a full-time programme and you will be expected to dedicate approximately 15-20 hours per week to self-directed study to carry out research and assignment work outside of timetabled hours. This can be undertaken at home or in College study areas and studios on specific days. Technician guidance will be available at designated times.

You will extend your practical skills in pattern cutting, garment making, use of industrial sewing machines and digital and screen printing. Your skills in Computer Aided Design (CAD) based digital presentation and visual communication will be enhanced alongside problem solving skills through the design process. Your skills in independent thinking and planning will be applied through completion of a professional and complex final collection project which may involve outsourcing and working with other professionals, as negotiated with lecturing staff. You will work as part of a group within the studio environment and during the planning and realisation of a final exhibition and fashion show in London. You will also collaborate with students and practitioners in other disciplines, including photographers and graphic designers to create paper based and digital promotional materials, and hair and beauty students as part of the fashion show.

Graduates of this programme have progressed to a wide range of internships or employment in industry roles such as fashion designer, textile designer, independent designer maker, pattern cutter, fashion illustrator and digital print designer. Others have progressed to further study, including teacher training and Masters level programmes.

You will be provided with a list of basic sewing and art equipment required for the programme as well as key reading material prior to enrolment.

A materials fee is payable for each year of the programme to cover the supply of basic materials, including calico, threads, pattern paper, printing inks and dyes. This fee is currently set at £70 per year.

An additional fee for trips, currently set at £30 per year, is also payable for each year of the programme to cover admission fees for external visits organised by the College. This will enable the College to obtain group discounts where available and ensure that students can visit key exhibitions and shows during the year. Please note that this fee will not cover your travel costs.

You will need to budget for the purchase of fabrics and other materials to carry out your project work. The scale of this cost may be significant as you will create a substantial body of work, but it will depend greatly on the nature of your work and your choice of style and materials. You will be encouraged to budget carefully, use recycled materials, seek sponsorship and conduct fundraising activities. As a guide, the College estimates a minimum cost of £450 across the year, although some students will spend more than this whilst others will spend less.

At the end of the year you will present your work as part of a group exhibition. This forms part of a module of study and you will be encouraged to work with your colleagues on the programme to raise funds to stage the exhibition and suggest possible venues. In recent years, students have exhibited at the New Designers show in London and this has provided an exciting opportunity to exhibit to thousands of visitors, including members of the industry. The cost of exhibiting at this event has been approximately £200 per student, although successful fundraising will significantly reduce the cost to students.

The College will also seek to organise a group visit to the Première Vision show in Paris. This will be an optional trip. Subject to a minimum number of students signing up, you should budget for a cost of approximately £250 if you wish to attend this event.

Following receipt of your application, we will invite you to an interview and ask you to bring a portfolio of your work. The interview and your portfolio will help us to assess your suitability for the programme. We will also consider your application form, including your personal statement and reference, and the entry requirements when making a decision.

Applications should be made through UCAS.

The programme is taught at our campus in Tonbridge, which offers close links to London and the south coast. You will benefit from a supportive environment, an excellent ratio of staff to students and guidance and tutorial support from specialist lecturers with industry experience. The purpose-designed and modern fashion and textile studios include access to professional equipment. Workshops from visiting speakers, fashion designers, textile agents, illustrators and fashion promotion specialists support core teaching and ensure the programme is relevant to the industry. In previous years, students have worked with local companies including Talullah & Hope; London design offices of high street chains such as Monsoon & Accessorize and Phase Eight; and independent designers, freelance artists and makers including Tatty Devine and Ptolemy Man.

The programme is suitable for students with a Foundation Degree or HND qualification in fashion, textiles or a related discipline who wish to extend their skills and achieve a full degree. Skills in either pattern cutting and garment making or an area of practical textile specialism, as well as ideas for the direction of a final year collection, are relevant for students joining this programme.

Students will take part in trips to exhibitions and London museums and agencies, as well as international competitions and the College’s end of year fashion show. In addition, students will have the opportunity to visit the Première Vision show in Paris in the second year.

- Concept Realisation and Development (30 credits)
- Business Promotion and Portfolio (30 credits)
- Dissertation (15 credits)
- A choice of a final major project focusing on either fashion or textiles (45 credits)

Fashion & Textiles Student Work

Fashion & Textiles Facilities


Applicants should hold a Foundation Degree or HND in fashion, textiles or a related discipline at Merit or Distinction Level. The College will also consider applicants who have completed 240 credits in a degree programme in Fashion, Textiles or a related discipline with achievement equivalent to a Merit profile in a Foundation Degree or HND.

Institution Code: K24
Course Code: W234
Campus Code: W

Charlotte Bidois

I now own my own small childrenswear business, The Little BearCub Company, which ... Charlotte Bidois, BA (Hons) Fashion & Textiles
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Curtis Ferris

My Fashion tutor has really helped me with developing my skills including using ... Curtis Ferris, BA (Hons) Fashion & Textiles
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Cripa Yangkhrung

l've loved my entire course, especially the final year. Staff have been very ... Cripa Yangkhrung, BA (Hons) Fashion & Textiles
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