BA (Hons) Fashion and Textiles

Welcome to Fashion and Textiles.

Our unique BA (hons) in Fashion and Textiles offers exciting opportunities to study Fashion Design and Printed Textiles for Fashion or Interior applications. Our course is highly practical with a strong emphasis on design and making, whether that is a length of hand printed fabric or the production of a fashion collection.

With our strong employer links, we recognise and respond to Industry Trends and aim to develop highly individual, skilled and creative graduates. Our alumni can be found working at brands across all levels, including: Burberry, Zoffany, Paul Smith, M&S, French Connection, Oasis, and River Island.

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Course IntroductionModulesEntry RequirementsGraduate CareersAdditional

This unique degree programme aims to develop your creative and practical skills for both Fashion and Textiles.

The course introduces you to the importance of research, critical thinking and the design process, along with the practical disciplines of; pattern making, fashion construction and textile processes, including traditional print methods and digital techniques. Our 3-year programme is delivered by a team of dedicated professionals with a variety of specialist subject knowledge and professional expertise. Excellent links with industry allow students to engage in live projects and also provide final year students with a mentor as part of our unique Industry Mentor programme.

Students can combine areas of study throughout the degree, or alternatively may specialise in Fashion Design, Fashion Textiles or Fashion Interiors developing a personal design philosophy and a unique set of skills. Our students are also able to attend London-based shows and exhibitions including New Designers.

The course operates on a modular basis that provides flexibility and choice. Each module is worth a specified number of credits, with most modules counting for 30 or 15 academic credits, with each credit taken equating to a total amount of study time which includes scheduled teaching, independent study and assessment activity.

Most full-time students will take modules worth 60 credits per semester, with part-time students taking proportionately fewer credits per semester. A total of 120 credits per level and 360 credits are needed for an honours degree as a whole. Overall grades for the course and degree classification are based on the marks obtained for modules taken at levels 5 and 6.

Compulsory modules enable you to cover key subject knowledge whilst and optional allow you to develop your own interests. The number of optional modules you can take depends on the number of core modules at a given level. Our teaching is informed by research, professional practice and industry engagement and modules change periodically to reflect developments in the discipline.

Year One (Level 4) Year Two (Level 5) Year Three (Level 6) Contextual Studies FAQ

Portfolio of artwork supported by 64 UCAS points* gained from study on Foundation Diploma in Art and Design or level 3 Diploma in an art related subject along with 5 GCSEs (grades A*-C) including English language, or an Art and Design Foundation Year. Exceptionally, A Level applicants with appropriate portfolio of artwork and knowledge. Students without formal qualifications but with appropriate portfolio of artwork/ work experience. All applicants are formally interviewed.

*2017-18 UCAS Tariff

International applicants

If English is not your first language you will need an IELTS score of 6.0, with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component (Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking), or an equivalent English Language qualification.

Additional requirements:

  • You must provide evidence of having been in general education for at least 10 years and of having studied within the last five years
  • a face-to-face interview is required before an offer is made.

Graduate Progression

Graduate shows and exhibitions such as Graduate Fashion Week, New Designers and a Fashion Show give a platform to students to exhibit their work to a wider audience. Our feedback shows that 80% of our graduates find employment; this is higher than the national average. The breadth of the course enables our Graduates to find work in a variety of areas and at all levels of the industry, from well-known high-street brands such as Ted Baker, Monsoon and Asos to high end luxury labels including Burberry, Harrods own Label and Paul Smith. Students work as; Designers, Pattern cutters, Garment Technologists, Product Developers, Buyers, Visual Merchandising, Public Relations, Print designers, Print studio managers, Trend Forecasters, Teachers.

Students may apply to join graduate schemes to pursue careers in Buying, Retail management or Marketing. Some students wish to continue studying and specialise further; for example we currently have 3 students at the Royal College of Art studying Textiles. The educational sector can be accessed through a Professional Graduate Certificate in Education.

Alumni Case Studies Q&A

Amber Pullen

Amber Pullen, Graduated 2017

Age: 22

Previous course: Colchester, Foundation Diploma Level 3.

Work Experience: Mirijam Rouden

Specialism: Textiles for fashion and interiors

Employment: Boden, print Designer

Where did you progress from?

Progressed from the Foundation Diploma at Colchester School of Art

Why did you choose Colchester?

Really interested in the facilities available and the small class groups. Great one to one feedback regularly available, which appealed to me rather than large class numbers. The traditional print room was a huge advantage and the opportunity to use such a large 5 meter print table.

What have you specialised in?

I have specialised in hand printed textiles but have been able to explore this across a range of both interiors and fashion. Producing hand printed garments and hand printed lengths of repeating fabric I have been able to fully explore my potential as a print designer.

How have you found the modules?

The modules across my three years at Colchester have all aided me in the development of my Final Major Project. Within first years the studio modules helped me to gain the basic skills in both the print and machine room, which I continued to develop throughout the years. Contextual studies helped me progress in my public speaking and presentation skills while also building on my essay writing and ability to report about my work on a live blog. The live industry brief within second year helped me to work towards a specific brief while presenting my work to the industry (Oasis) working towards constraints and requirements of a set brief. All modules have been extremely beneficial helping my skills, knowledge and confidence grow as an upcoming designer.

Which have ones have you enjoyed the most?

Modules I have enjoyed the most would definitely be those in the print room. Textile support modules introduced me to so many various techniques from screen printing, dyeing, foiling, flocking, discharge and constructing a repeating textile print. These skills have then been utilised to form the foundations of my final projects.

How have you found the feedback and do you think it has helped you improve?

I gain constant feedback on all of my work on a regular bases. Being able to use the studios 5 days a week enables me to talk to tutors consistently about my working progress, keeping me on track and gaining development on how to improve my work and the next steps to take to achieve my vision.

Have you been on any work experience during the course?

During the summer before returning into third year I undertook a month long internship at a print design studio based in London. This work experience gave me an insight into what it is like working within the industry and how a textile studio works. Within my time there I worked to set briefs drawing by hand motifs and designs that were used in print designs. I was able to work on Photoshop developing this designs after drawing them and also undertook manual skills in the screen-printing studio, washing and preparing silk screens for exposure.

Did you feel prepared? 

Initially I was nervous about the experience but once I was introduced into the company and given my brief to work from I soon realised how similar the working methods were to those that we complete at Uni. The process of designing a print was exactly the same and I felt comfortable and prepared about what I had to achieve.

Have any parts of the course been industry led?

Within the second semester of second year our whole brief was industry led. I chose to work with the brief set by Oasis, which I worked to produce a professional portfolio and a collection of digital printed textile samples. This brief led to presenting my work to two designers from Oasis, which was a great experience for getting confident in an interview situation.

How did this help you?

Working towards a set brief helped me to restrain my research and focus more specifically on a concentrated outcome. It helped me to understand how to professionally convey my work through a portfolio and present this to an audience with confidence. Presenting to designers from the industry gave me the opportunity to competently talk about my work and the design process of how I achieved my results.

What opportunities have there been along the way?

Regular trips to London have been organised throughout my 3 years here at Colchester to exhibitions, galleries and shops that have all aided my studies. Visiting Paris twice has also been an amazing experience and being able to go to Premiere Vision in Paris gave me the opportunity to see what the global textile show had to offer. Outside speakers from the fashion industry and previous students visiting has given me the opportunity to see how they progressed into the industry and how they went about there studies giving me advice and knowledge to take forward for my future. Within third year being chosen for the Nicole Abbott award was a very proud and amazing moment. Being able to design and construct my own exhibition space and put up my work for the judges to see was a unique experience that resulted in myself getting chosen to go and visit Sir Paul Smith in his studio in London. This opportunity was such a privilege and being able to meet Paul Smith and his design team gave me assurance in the work I am producing. I was lucky enough to be hand selected by Paul Smith for an internship in July with his company, which I am extremely excited to undertake and this whole opportunity came from the contacts, and resources we have at Colchester.

What are your aspirations when you leave?

My aspirations for when I leave are to find a job/experience in the textile industry. Working as a print designer would be my ideal job so I have begun searching for opportunities in the industry that may lead to a job.

How have you found the teaching and support you have received?

The support I have received at Colchester School of Art has been incredible. The teaching has challenged me to take risks, push boundaries and experiment with new processes and techniques which allowed me to make the very most of my degree and to achieve my career ambition after graduation.

Have you made friends?

I have made great friends from my studying, friendships that I’m sure will continue past my degree into my future.

What has it been like socially while studying in Colchester?

Socially it has been great. Living locally and studying at Colchester has given me a prefect opportunity to still socialise and live at home which I feel has pushed me to make the most out of my degree.

What are your highlights of the course over the last 3 years?

My final year at Colchester has defiantly been a huge high point throughout my entire experience. Being able to express my entire passion for print, colour and textiles in a collection that I have designed and printed all from scratch has just been a dream. I have thoroughly enjoyed producing work which I have had the freedom to design and express my working methods as a designer for everyone to see.

Anna Howlett

Anna Howlett
Specialism: Fashion Textiles
Current job: Design Manager; Zoffany, Sanderson & William Morris
Graduated: 2009

What made you chose our course at Colchester?  

I wanted to explore fashion and textiles rather than a course that specialised in on one of the subjects. The studio spaces at Colchester felt like a personal/creative environment to continue studying in.

What was the support like on the course, tell us about your experience?

Great one to one student teacher relationship. Lots of time to discuss and meet. Felt like a very personal course. Lots of support throughout my 3 year degree.

How do you feel the course at Colchester prepared you for your career in design?

The course promoted a good work ethic and encouraged creative thinking, I was prepared for my first design role in India which I picked up after the New Designers graduate exhibition at the Business Design Centre.

What are the key skills / the most important things that you learnt on your degree that you took with you to the workplace? 

Creative workshops were a great way to learn different techniques which I have continued to use going forward. The exhibitions we organised during the degree course were also a great insight into industry events and how they need to be organised. We actually won 2 awards for ‘best in show’ at both Graduate Fashion Week and New Designers.

How did you get your first design job? 

The course Leader Val Jacobs alerted me to the opportunity to work as a designer based in Mumbai, India.

What did your first job involve on graduation?

Textile designer, moving to Mumbai, working in a design studio and working on designs for weave and embroidery. Research, design, repeats, colouring, fabric development, customer relations plus lots of partying!

How many design jobs have you had since finishing?

  1. GMSyntex, india – textile designer
  2. Prestigious textiles – senior designer
  3. GMSyntex, india – design manager
  4. Zoffany / Morris / Sanderson – Weave Manager
  5. Freelance Designer throughout

What is your current job role?

Weave Manager – Zoffany / Morris / Sanderson

Development of designs / textile qualities for weaves and embroideries

Sourcing fabrics world wide / working with suppliers

Colouring

Brand development

Concepts

Managing a team

Fabric testing

Loading with marketing / purchasing departments

Visiting trade shows

Enjoying my job!

Have any of your job roles involved travel?

Yes, frequent travel incl. Europe, Turkey and India.

What advice would you give recent graduates entering the design industry?

To gain as much work experience as possible prior to graduation through placements and intern opportunities in order to understand the industry. To take opportunities offered and to be brave with trying new things……. Move to India!

What association have you had with New Designers exhibition since graduation? 

My current company supports New Designers and gives an award and placement to the winning student each year.

What has been the highlight of your career since graduation? 

To be in my current position, working for the brands I dreamed of whilst studying. To have lived in India for 5 years and adapting to an amazing culture and work ethic.

Elin Newland

Elin Newland
Current role: Designer
Graduated:
2012

What did you specialise in at college?

Fashion and printed textiles for womenswear.

How long have you been in your current position?

3 years

Did you get this position as your first job after graduating?

No, this is my 2nd. I interned at 3 companies before getting my first role.

Why do you think you were selected for your current role?

Hardworking attitude, positive outlook, willingness to learn, ambitious

What are you responsible for?

Supporting Senior Designer in developing and designing the range. Currently working on Womenswear tailoring.

What is your average day like?

Busy! Researching new product concepts, putting detailed Tech Packs together, liaising with my buying and merchandising teams, contacting overseas sourcing offices/suppliers with regards to current developments.

What aspects of your job are the most enjoyable and least enjoyable?

Most enjoyable – working with lovely clothes everyday. Doing something I love as a job. Being around creative people. Least enjoyable – forgetting that I made a cup of tea and drinking it!

Who do you work with from day to day?

Senior Designer, Assistant Buyer , Buyer, Design Leadership Team, fellow Designers and Pattern Cutters.

How important is it for students to get work experience?

Extremely. You will meet so many people in various different roles. Not only can it open your eyes to the possibilities of the different types of career/positions within the fashion industry but it can also open doors for opportunities.

Do you offer placements to students?

Yes.

Is there any travel involved in your job?

Yes. Travelling to see suppliers, sourcing and development trips both overseas and in the UK.

What’s more important creativity or personality?

For design I believe it’s a combination of the two. I feel that you need to be inspired and creative to be a designer but you need to consider your personality and how you present yourself when working in a business environment. You will need to able to communicate effectively with many different people and in various situations.

Did the course equip you with the skills you needed to work in the industry?

Yes and no. The course taught me the technical skills and how to develop ideas. Work experience helped me to understand the industry and how it works.

Did you feel that studying for a combined degree in both Fashion and Textiles has helped you as a designer?

For me, yes. I wasn’t sure which I preferred whilst studying and I was able to explore both passions. However, in bigger companies the roles tend to be very separate – you are either a product designer or a print designer.

What is your lasting memory about studying at Colchester?

What good fun it was!

Eloise O'Brian Scott

Eloise O’Brian Scott

Specialism: Womenswear and printed textiles

Previous course: Foundation Diploma in textiles at Colchester School of Art

Currently at RCA, MA Printed Textiles

What made you chose to study at Colchester School of Art?

I chose to study at Colchester as it is one of the few courses that specialise in both the skills of textile print and fashion construction and that allows you to find your own pathway within this. The ratio of students to tutors is very good, I wanted to stay local to get the best out of my time on my degree, and also I had heard very good things from students who were currently on the course.

What’s it like being a student at University Centre Colchester?

It has personally been a very good experience for me; I have been able to achieve a lot during my time.

What has the support like been like both practically and creatively?

The support from tutors is amazing, they are always around to help or to give creative advice. Technicians are around to always help with practical problems and issues.

What do you think the best thing about studying for a Fashion & Textiles degree at the University centre Colchester?

The freedom to expand my print skills and knowledge, to be able to find my own style through drawing and textile print. I have been able to find my own pathway and have had lots of creative opportunities to be experimental with my work. I feel that I have been well prepared & equipped with a range of essential skills for work in the industry when I leave my degree course.

How do you feel the course at Colchester prepared you for your MA?

I feel that I am well prepared, that I have my own style & working method which will help me to achieve the most from my MA. I have had the opportunity to be really experimental and creative at Colchester through my use of printed textiles for fashion.

What work experience did you do, how has your experience on the course prepared you for this?

I did two work placements – 2 weeks at Stephen Walters Silk Mill and 4 weeks at Orla Kiely in London.

My work placement at Orla Kiely was more hands on in print and pattern cutting, I felt that I was able to keep up and that I had the skills to understand what I was doing in a professional design environment. I had in-depth knowledge of the Adobe computer programmes which was really helpful. I feel that the design process which we are taught at UCC are easily applied to industry who work to a tight time frame and because of this I was able to really enjoy and gain good contacts and references.

What briefly would you say to someone thinking about doing our course at Colchester, would you advise them knowing what you know now to do our course?

I would defiantly advise them to do the course. I feel that for the money you get so much more hands on teaching. I have enjoyed every minute of my course, the tutors and guidance you get is such a high quality and i feel that even studying in a smaller college i have still been able to keep up and be accepted into RCA which i feel really shows the high quality of the teaching.

What made you want to apply for an MA at the RCA?

Initially my print tutor advised me to. I felt that I want to continue to expand on my creativity and style as a textile designer and experiment with my processes which I am able to do at RCA. I also feel that at this stage I am not ready to stop hand printing, it’s my passion so I want to continue to do it and learn for as long as I can and RCA is the best place to do that before then entering the industry with that knowledge. Also the skill of analysing and refining successful work, being able to identify what is successful and why and then more forward and keep expanding ideas and always moving forwards.

What’s your dream Jon in fashion  textiles – where do you see yourself professionally in 10 years?

In 10 years I would I hope to have gained lots of experience within the industry and then successfully launch my small business and gradually expand.

What will you remember as the highlight of your time at Colchester?

  • The amazing tutors that I will keep in contact with throughout my MA.
  • The amazing friends that I have made from foundation all through the 4 years.
  • Going from not knowing what I wanted to do to then moving into something that I love and finding what I want for my career.
  • I will remember Colchester as the start of and the gateway to my MA and my career.

Meera Pandya

Meera Pandya
Current role: Head Designer for Harrods of London (Harrods private label)
Graduated: 2012
 

What did you specialise in ?

Womenswear

How long have you been in your current position?

4 years

What are your responsibilities?

I am responsible for all aspects of design across Menswear, Womenswear, Childrenswear and leather accessories. I oversee all design work and product development critical paths with the buyer. I work with the Buyer and Merchandiser to achieve all of our design objectives for each season. It is my duty to insure all product is designed and developed to the highest standard, taking in account all tends and analysis. Creating collections that are commercial with a high luxury aesthetic that reflect the Harrods of London Brand. I attend all fit sessions for all of our products and oversee the final aesthetic of the garments for production. Working with the quality team it essential and it’s my responsibility to ensure that design and the quality team work together seamlessly ensuring constant communication and product consistency. I attend fashion trade shows and seek out potential new fabric and factory suppliers. I manage all vendor relationship through product development stages as it is key in this role. Managing my design assistant and junior buying team members is also my remit.

Did you get this position as your first job after graduating?

Yes but I initially took a year out to work for myself and then joined Harrods of London.

Why do you think that you were selected for your current role?

My work experience previously played a big part in me getting selected. A strong portfolio with diverse skills, such as pattern cutting, construction as well as design with a commercial edge. Working in retail was also a big part due to me understanding how a product is sold and what the commercial value is worth.

What is your average day like?

Hectic! It can really vary. I would have updates with the buyer and my directors to show developments of each product. I then will check with critical paths with the buyer on how the season is developing. I will be checking for any daily arrivals due for colour and swatch approvals and toiles that need to be fitted for the season. On peak design times, I would be sketching and collating imagery for the season I am working on, creating moodboards and fabric boards. I would take inspiration trips and visit local areas too. Finally I ensure I am up to date with all Fashion news, and current fashion topics.

What aspects of your job are the most enjoyable?

All of it! It really is truly design focused role which I’m very fortunate to have. I love setting the direction for each season and thinking of a new and exciting concept. I love the production side and visiting our factories after my sketches are sent out, seeing first prototypes is so exciting. Attending trades shows and seeing what is new in the market is great awareness of what it being designed and produced. Lastly, it is seeing the product I have designed, arrive and been sold in the most iconic department store in the world is truly a blessing!

Who do you work with from day to day?

The buyer and Merchandiser to ensure collections are being produced within budgets and range plans. My assistant plays a big part in my working day as she is accountable for all daily tasks and organising the season with me and generally keep me up to date with daily critical path movements.

How important is it for students to get work experience?

I think this is the most important aspect in order to start your career. It makes you understand real working life, not just from a work design perspective but also an office work/ environment. It teaches you organisation and relationship building with colleges rather than other students/friends in a professional environment.

Is there much travel involved in your job?

Yes I do travel on peak buying and design times. These would mainly be factory visits, buying appointments and inspiration trips abroad and UK.

What were the most important skills you learnt at college that you now use at work?

Time management of design projects- helps me to achieve all deadlines and plan critical paths.

Research- helps me showcase a clear development process for each season to show my directors/buyers so they can see clearly where my design thought process has come from.

Did you feel prepared for employment after completing your degree?

Yes. I do feel that the work experience that I had done whilst at University helped also in building my confidence outside of a learning environment.

Did you feel that a combined degree in both Fashion and Textiles has given you a valuable background?

I had knowledge of both fabrics and construction which helped. Understanding textiles such a knitwear or printing enabled me to have the option of exploring these areas in my final collection. It also wasn’t an untouched subject when I came across them in my current role, as knitwear is a big part of my womenswear and menswear collections.

What would your advice be to someone wanting to study Fashion and Textiles?

Have a clear focus on what area you want to specialise in. Develop a style that’s suits you in design and stick to it! Learn Adobe illustrator and Photoshop inside out, as this will be your best friend when starting as a junior designer. When presenting your portfolio, it is imperative you have tailored your design work to your chosen company but still keeping your style. A few self-initiated projects wouldn’t hurt either and shows commitment and self-drive.

Awarding body: University of Essex

Students who complete the course successfully will receive a degree from the University of Essex. The agreement between the University Centre Colchester and the University of Essex is reviewed every five years and was last renewed in 2017.

Timetables: Timetables are normally available one month before registration. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week.

Teaching and Learning: You are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and practical’s. Seminars enable smaller group discussions to develop understanding of topics covered in lectures. You will use and have access to industry-standard software and facilities throughout your course.

When not attending lectures, seminars and laboratory or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, learning zone or technical learning resources, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for examinations

Assessment: The course provides you with opportunities to test your understanding of the subject informally before you complete the formal assessments that count towards your final mark. Each module normally contains at least one piece of practice or ‘formative’ assessment for which you receive feedback from your tutor. Practice assessments are developmental and any grades you receive for them do not count towards your module mark.

There is a formal or ‘summative’ assessment at the end of each module. Assessment methods include written examinations and a range of coursework assessments such as essays, reports, portfolios, performance, presentations and your final year major project. The grades from formal assessments count towards your module mark.

 Feedback: You will receive feedback on all practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback is intended to help you learn and you are encouraged to discuss it with your module tutor.

Apply Full-time
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BA (Hons) Fashion and Textiles - Full Time
LevelLevel 6
LocationColchester
Duration3 years
UCAS CodeW231
Academic Year2019-2020
Study ModeFull-Time
CampusUniversity Centre Colchester
Start DateSeptember 2019
Fee(s)2019-20: £8,250 per year
BA (Hons) Fashion and Textiles - Part Time
LevelLevel 6
LocationColchester
Duration6 Years
Course CodeZH1BAFTP01
Academic Year2019-2020
Study ModePart-Time
CampusUniversity Centre Colchester
Start DateSeptember 2019
Fee(s)2019-20: £4,125 per year
Year One (Level 4)

Module Code and Title:

BAFT01C Introduction to Fashion and Textiles Processes (30 Credits)

What’s it about?

This module will introduce you to the analytical, creative and practical skills you will need as a designer.

What do I learn?

You will be learning about the visual language of drawing for design in both Fashion and Textiles and how to research and develop ideas, both in your sketchbook and practically through pattern cutting, garment construction and textile applications.

What’s the assignment?

The project focusses on the methodology used to design. Using your own research, you will generate ideas for a surface pattern, producing a length of screen-printed cloth; this cloth will then be used to manufacture a shirt from your own design.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT02C Introduction to Study Skills and Personal Planning (15 Credits)

What’s it about?

This module introduces you to the Higher Education learning environment.

It will equip you with the skills to reflect on your learning and experience as a student.

What do I learn?

  • Appreciation and understanding of the requirements of a HE learning environment
  • Identifying, recording and practicing the skills required to be successful in your studies
  • The ability to record and reflect upon the development of your learning

What’s the assignment?

A 10-minute audio-visual presentation to your peer group, a reflective online journal, and a 1,500-word report on your learning experience.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT03C Exploration of Fashion and Textile Practice (30 Credits)

What’s it about?

This module is designed to help students explore their potential as designers. The research-based brief asks you to consider the Fashion and Textiles design process and explore a given theme in an individual way.

What do I learn?

Through a series of practical workshops you will be supported to identify and develop your own working method. You will learn to work independently with confidence, developing ideas for Fashion and Textiles in a contemporary context. This will involve the design and manufacture of both garments and fashion fabrics.

What’s the assignment?

The assignment is to develop a personal response to the given theme and manufacture a practical Fashion and Textiles outcome. You will also be submitting a professional portfolio for assessment. All outcomes will be supported by practical workshops helping you to establish your own successful working methods.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT04C Critical and Contextual Research (15 Credits)

What’s it about?

A range of lectures and seminars, running throughout the academic year, on the history and development of art and design practice.

What do I learn?

You will learn about the social, economic, political, industrial, technical and environmental contexts within which art, design & craft are conceived and produced.  You will also develop your communication, research and analytical skills and your ability to write coherently and present your ideas to an audience.

What’s the assignment?

You are asked to give a 10-minute presentation and submit an illustrated essay or report (2,000 words) on a topic agreed with your tutor.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT05C Introduction to Fashion Construction (15 Credits)

What’s it about?

This is a practical module based in the workshop, introducing a range of industrial equipment, safe working practices, and basic pattern-cutting and manufacturing skills for Fashion.

What do I learn?

Based in the sewing workshop, you will be introduced to a variety of theoretical and technical processes and understand how technical skills underpin the design process.

What’s the assignment?

There are 2 things to submit: a file of practical samples and pattern-cutting techniques, and a toile (sample garment) that has been designed, pattern cut and manufactured during the module.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT06C Introduction to Textile Applications (15 Credits)

What’s it about?

This module introduces students to fundamental printed Textile processes. The module provides an in-depth understating of traditional processes and gives students confidence to work in an exciting practical workshop environment.

What do I learn?

You will be introduced to a wide range of traditional printed Textile processes that includes dying, printing, embellishment & decorative surface treatments for both Fashion and furnishing fabrics.

What’s the assignment?  

Throughout the practical workshop sessions, you will develop a series of fabric samples that explore traditional technique. Once you have mastered these, the assignment is to show you have worked creatively with them to develop new and innovative Textile samples.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT07C Introduction to Drawing Processes (15 Credits)

 What’s it about?

This is a practice-based module that supports the developmental work being done in your main studio modules, enabling you to effectively employ a range of drawing approaches and processes.

What do I learn?

You will be introduced to a variety of drawing materials, techniques and processes.  This will include building an understanding of the principles underlying different approaches to drawing, developing your mark-making and drawing skills, and acquiring a deeper understanding of contextual and conceptual elements of historical and contemporary practices.

What’s the assignment?

There are two elements to submit: Written & Illustrated File [20%], which is all contextual research material on other artists’ work and your reflective writing about it, and Material Outcomes [80%], which is your portfolio of drawing works, sketchbooks and a 500-word Critical Appraisal of your work.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT09C Introduction to Digital Imaging and Manipulation (15 Credits)

What’s it about?

While you are learning basic technical skills with analogue equipment and processes in the studio module, this support module will be equipping you with complementary skills in digital imaging and, in particular, with image-editing and digital manipulation.

What do I learn?

You will be introduced to the industry-standard software package, Adobe Photoshop, and guided through a wide range of techniques and processes that are commonly used to edit digital images in differing commercial applications.

What’s the assignment?

You will produce a portfolio of digitally manipulated images that demonstrate a range of different techniques. The portfolio will be supported by appropriate visual research and the preparatory work used in developing your ideas for the images, and a record of the various editing techniques you’ve used and your analysis of how successful they’ve been.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

Year Two (Level 5)

Module Code and Title:

BAFTO1I Development of Fashion and Textile Processes

What’s it about?

Students are asked to carry out research and to respond to a set brief, generating a range of creative ideas to form a collection, utilising both Fashion and Textile design skills.

What do I learn?

About the importance of original research, in generating ideas for both Fashion and Textiles. Workshops include: sketchbook development, illustration, using colour, materials and processes, and CAD skills.

What’s the assignment?

The assignment is a design project to produce a Fashion and Textiles collection; the outcome may be a finished garment or a length of screen-printed fabric. CAD skills underpin the portfolio presentation of the finished design work.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT02I Personal Development Planning

What’s it about?

This module is about independently assessing and reflecting on your learning so far and considering your plans for the future, identifying the skills you have already learned and where you might need to apply yourself more in order to achieve those goals.

What do I learn?

You will develop your independence in applying study skills, which will help you in your studies and career, such as identifying and assessing personal strengths and weaknesses, planning and organising developmental needs and making reflective and critical judgments.

What’s the assignment?

You will be asked to give a 10-minute presentation on an agreed career development proposal and submit a 2,000-word Reflective Report and online illustrated journal.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT03I Investigation of Fashion and Textile Practice

What’s it about?

Students are to reflect upon and use their learning experience so far by engaging with a live industry project for an identified brand. The module is designed to encourage a creative and focused response and will showcase students developing skills as designers and makers.

What do I learn?

A variety of specialist skills will be used to transform initial research and ideas into concepts and established design work for Fashion and Textiles. Use of Photoshop for digital Textile ideas, along with portfolio presentation and use of Illustrator for technical garment flats, are essential to the module and a major part of the outcome.

What’s the assignment?

A live industry led-design brief, the outcome is a professional portfolio showcasing Fashion and Textile ideas and a short presentation to industry.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT04I Developmental Research

What’s it about?

This module builds upon the broad overview of art and design practice introduced in the Critical and Contextual Studies module at Level 4. It will develop a deeper knowledge and appreciation of traditional and contemporary theories of art and help you to examine them in relation to your own practice and interests.

What do I learn?

You will learn about contemporary and historical ideas and debates within your subject, and further enhance your abilities to communicate effectively and persuasively in written and spoken form.

What’s the assignment?

You will deliver a 10-minute audio-visual presentation, and an illustrated essay or report (3,000 words) on a research topic agreed with your tutor.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT06I Development of Fashion Construction

What’s it about?

This is a practical module based in the workshop, introducing a series of advanced techniques used in pattern-cutting and garment manufacture.

What do I learn?

You will be introduced to a variety of advanced theoretical and technical processes, and by designing a mini collection you will understand how technical skills underpin the design process.

What’s the assignment?

You will build a file documenting a wide range of technical processes and samples; using this reference, you will then design a mini collection, cut a pattern and manufacture a toile (sample garment) for a selected design.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT05I Development of Textile Boundaries

What’s it about?

This module introduces students to a wide range of contemporary printed textile processes. The module provides a safe and supported workshop environment for students to develop individual and innovative working methods pushing the traditional boundaries of printed Textiles practice.

What do I learn?

You will be supported to work independently using your understanding of traditional processes to develop personal working methods. This will mean subverting traditional processes and developing new innovative ways of applying pattern, colour & embellishments to cloth.

What’s the assignment?  

Through the practical workshop sessions, you will develop a series of fabric samples that explore innovation. You will be asked to evidence your use of process in the context of a contemporary Fashion and Textiles design environment.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT07I Development of Drawing Processes (15 Credits)

What’s it about?

This module aims to encourage the development of a personal creative approach to drawing. You will be encouraged to explore conceptual and unorthodox approaches to drawing and mark-making and broaden your understanding of the role drawing can play in your studio practice.

What do I learn?

Through studio-based workshops and tutorials you will develop your skills and ideas via a range of approaches, materials and processes that will typically include observational and analytical drawing, image manipulation and media experimentation. You will also work on your ability to explore, analyse and manipulate imagery, and adopt experimental approaches to the practice and process of drawing and mark making.

What’s the assignment?

There are two elements to submit: Research & Development [40%], which includes all contextual research on other artists, and Material Outcomes [60%], which includes a portfolio of drawing work and a 500-word Critical Self-Appraisal.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

Year Three (Level 6)

Module Code and Title:

BAFT01H Refinement of Fashion and Textile Processes

What’s it about?

This is a practice-based module that requires you to engage in the independent development and production of creative solutions for a self-initiated project proposal. The work you undertake and produce for this module may also serve as a precursor to the work you will produce in the Professional Practice module.

What do I learn?

You will synthesise all the practical and theoretical skills learnt so far on the course. As well as developing your specialist skills further, you will learn how to manage time in a larger, more complex project.

What’s the assignment?

The assignment is a self- initiated brief. Work to be submitted will include: Sketch/Ideas books, Practical Research Material, Contextual Research Material, Toiles and Textile samples.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT02H Professional Development Planning

What’s it about?

This module is about supporting your preparation for professional progression, by providing a forum for you to reflect on your role as an artist or designer and consider what professional practice or research interests you might pursue following graduation.

What do I learn?

This module will provide an understanding and awareness of the varied and eclectic avenues available to you as an Art and Design graduate. Professional development workshops & visiting lecturers will provide you with practical guidance on working in the creative industries.

 What’s the assignment?

There are three elements to submit: an Audio-Visual Presentation [20%] which identifies your postgraduate goals, an Illustrated Blog [40%], with documentation of your research (e.g. CV, funding streams, work and exhibiting opportunities), and an Exhibition Presentation [40%], based on the exhibition of work you present at the end of your final year.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT03H Professional Fashion and Textile Practice

What’s it about?

A professional design module bringing together everything that you have learnt on the course to produce a final collection of Fashion or of Textiles – or a mix of both disciplines – for assessment and public exhibition.

What do I learn?

In addition to practical and specialist design skills, you will learn how to work professionally, managing time to produce work that is ambitious, refined and conceptually synthesized and to an appropriate professional standard.

What’s the assignment?

The self-initiated project outcome is agreed with tutors. At the end of the module you will also apply professional standards of preparation and presentation to the public exhibition of your work.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

BAFT04H Dissertation

What’s it about?

You will be using your academic and writing skills to engage with in-depth exploration, research and investigation of a subject related to your main studio practice.

What do I learn?

You will learn to plan and write a dissertation that demonstrates logical and consistent structure and fulfils the requirements and standards for academic writing.

What’s the assignment?

There are two assignments to be submitted. Firstly, you will produce a 500-word dissertation proposal to provide a summarized overview of the subject. You will then produce a 6,000-word illustrated dissertation on your chosen subject.

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

Contextual Studies

Year One: All Art and Design Pathways

 

Module Code and Title:

BAFA02C, BAFT02C, BAGD02C, BATD02C, BAPH05C:

Introduction to Study Skills and Personal Planning (15 Credits)

 

What’s it about?

This module introduces you to the Higher Education learning environment.

It will equip you with the skills to reflect on your learning and experience as a student.

 

What do I learn?

  • Appreciation and understanding of the requirements of a HE learning environment
  • Identifying, recording and practicing the skills required to be successful in your studies
  • The ability to record and reflect upon the development of your learning

 

What’s the assignment?

A 10-minute audio-visual presentation to your peer group, a reflective online journal, and a 1,500-word report on your learning experience.

 

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

 

 

Module Code and Title:

BAFA04C, BAFT04C, BAGD04C, BAPHO6C, BATD04C:

Critical and Contextual Research (15 Credits)

 

What’s it about?

A range of lectures and seminars, running throughout the academic year, on the history and development of art and design practice.

 

What do I learn?

You will learn about the social, economic, political, industrial, technical and environmental contexts within which art, design & craft are conceived and produced.  You will also develop your communication, research and analytical skills and your ability to write coherently and present your ideas to an audience.

 

What’s the assignment?

You are asked to give a 10-minute presentation and submit an illustrated essay or report (2,000 words) on a topic agreed with your tutor.

 

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

 

 

 

Year Two: All Art and Design Pathways

 

Module Code and Title:

BAFA02I, BAFT02I, BAGD02I, BAPH02I, BATD02I:

Personal Development Planning (15 Credits)

 

What’s it about?

This module is about independently assessing and reflecting on your learning so far and considering your plans for the future, identifying the skills you have already learned and where you might need to apply yourself more in order to achieve those goals.

 

What do I learn?

You will develop your independence in applying study skills, which will help you in your studies and career, such as identifying and assessing personal strengths and weaknesses, planning and organising developmental needs and making reflective and critical judgments.

 

What’s the assignment?

You will be asked to give a 10-minute presentation on an agreed career development proposal and submit a 2,000-word Reflective Report and online illustrated journal.

 

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

 

 

Module Code and Title:

BAFA041, BAFT041, BAGD041, BAPHO41, BATD041:

Developmental Research (15 Credits)

 

What’s it about?

This module builds upon the broad overview of art and design practice introduced in the Critical and Contextual Studies module at Level 4. It will develop a deeper knowledge and appreciation of traditional and contemporary theories of art and help you to examine them in relation to your own practice and interests.

 

What do I learn?

You will learn about contemporary and historical ideas and debates within your subject, and further enhance your abilities to communicate effectively and persuasively in written and spoken form.

 

What’s the assignment?

You will deliver a 10-minute audio-visual presentation, and an illustrated essay or report (3,000 words) on a research topic agreed with your tutor.

 

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

 

 

 

Year Three: All Art and Design Pathways

 

Module Code and Title:

BAFA02H, BAFT02H, BAGD02H, BATD02H, BAPH02H:

Professional Development Planning (30 Credits)

 

What’s it about?

This module is about supporting your preparation for professional progression, by providing a forum for you to reflect on your role as an artist or designer and consider what professional practice or research interests you might pursue following graduation.

 

What do I learn?

This module will provide an understanding and awareness of the varied and eclectic avenues available to you as an Art and Design graduate. Professional development workshops & visiting lecturers will provide you with practical guidance on working in the creative industries.

 

What’s the assignment?

There are three elements to submit: an Audio-Visual Presentation [20%] which identifies your postgraduate goals, an Illustrated Blog [40%], with documentation of your research (e.g. CV, funding streams, work and exhibiting opportunities), and an Exhibition Presentation [40%], based on the exhibition of work you present at the end of your final year.

 

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

Module Code and Title:

BAFA04H, BAFT04H, BAGD04H, BATD04H; BAPH04H:

Dissertation (30 Credits)

What’s it about?

You will be using your academic and writing skills to engage with in-depth exploration, research and investigation of a subject related to your main studio practice.

 

What do I learn?

You will learn to plan and write a dissertation that demonstrates logical and consistent structure and fulfils the requirements and standards for academic writing.

 

What’s the assignment?

There are two assignments to be submitted. Firstly, you will produce a 500-word dissertation proposal to provide a summarized overview of the subject. You will then produce a 6,000-word illustrated dissertation on your chosen subject.

 

Want to know more?

To see the module description, please click here.

FAQ

About University Centre Colchester.

How many students study at UCC?  

There are approximately 1196 HE students studying at UCC.

How many students study Art and Design?

There are approximately 232 students studying Art and Design.

Can I access the University of Essex facilities?

The University of Essex has a large campus, as a UCC student you will be able to use many of the facilities there, including the library, gym, student bars and night clubs as well as joining various clubs and societies.

What should I bring to my interview?

We interview students from A level, level 3, Foundation and also students who may have had a break in their education, we like to see what you are currently working on, so it could be a combination of any of the following; sketch books, a traditional portfolio of drawings, design ideas, use of different mediums, illustrations, collages, photographs, 3D models or fabric samples or garments. A piece of written work is also a good thing to bring with you.

What will the interview be like?

Your interview on campus will include a tour of the department, an opportunity to chat informally with current students studying on the course and a chance to view work produced on the course. You will have an individual interview with a tutor who teaches on the course, this will be an opportunity for you to talk through your work and ask any questions you may have.

Will I receive any Bursaries or discounts?

There are a range of financial benefits on offer subject to eligibility. For further information and to check terms and conditions please click here or contact UCC operations uccoperations@colchester.ac.uk

About the course.

How large are the group sizes?

Our group sizes are intentionally kept small so that you are able to learn effectively, the average class size is 18 students to one tutor. Students comment that they can regularly speak with tutors and highly value the teaching contact and technical support that we are able to provide.

How often will I see my tutor?

Tutors see all students every week on their taught days and are also available on days where students have open access. Workshops are staffed by technicians who provide technical support for students producing practical work. Students also receive regular feedback tutorials throughout each module or project.

How many hours a week will I study?

Degree courses are made up of a mix of contact or taught hours and student managed learning hours. For example, first year students are required to attend for 12 contact hours a week, in addition students will work independently; using the library, workshops and studio spaces or working from home, for an additional 24 hours. Many students find that this arrangement allows them to combine studying with part time work.

How much of the course is practical work?

The course is a creative design degree, therefore approximately 75% is practical work. Professional technical skills underpin the design process throughout the course. Screen printing, Textile processes, Pattern cutting, garment construction, specialist computer packages are all embedded into the curriculum. Inductions into Photography and Printmaking are also offered in year 1 allowing students’ access to these workshops throughout their course.

How much of the course is written work?

The Contextual Studies modules help to underpin the creative process and provide a background context, with lectures, visiting speakers, trips and visits. They also help you to develop professionally in order to plan your career after graduation. In year 1 and 2 students are asked to write an essay or report, this culminates in year 3 with a dissertation. You will also attend seminars to broaden your knowledge of design and develop your communication and analytical skills and your confidence as a designer. Academic learning support is available for students who require it.

Can I specialise in Fashion or Textiles or do I need to study both subject areas?

The programme combines fashion design, printed textiles and garment construction and allows students to develop a complete understanding of the design process and the industry. The first year of the programme introduces both Fashion and Textiles. As the course progresses you are able to focus on either specialism; many students elect to study both disciplines producing both printed fabrics and garments in year 3, other students produce only printed textiles (for fashion or interiors) or choose to develop their design skills and focus on pattern cutting and construction in their final year (menswear, womenswear or childrenswear). We strongly believe that our degree produces very employable graduates and that the knowledge you will have because of your experience studying fashion and textiles definitely gives you an advantage.

Are trips and visits included in the course?

Trips and visits are offered as part of the course for all years, they may include: Factory visits, visits to design studios, exhibitions, trade shows, print fairs, shop research trips, fabric buying trips and study trips abroad. The Warner Textile Archive, Sudbury Silk Mills, Minories Gallery and Firstsite visual arts centre are all close by along with Design Studios and Manufacturing Units. London Liverpool Street is 50 mins by train from Colchester.

Do you have a mentoring system?

We believe in creating a community and mentoring is central to this idea. We even provide mentors for our new students before they enrol. We offer a vertical mentoring system across all years so that year 1 students are mentored by year 2 and year 2 students by year 3. Our Industry Mentoring programme allows all final year students to have a mentor who actually works in the industry.  This mentor will give valuable feedback and support throughout the final year of study, often resulting in placements and employment on graduation, and provides a professional network of contacts after graduation.

Are there opportunities to work with Industry and take part in national competitions?

National competitions such as Levis Denim, Diversity Now and the FAD competition are embedded into the curriculum in year 2 and 3. Students also select from a range of live industry briefs in year 2 which allows them to gain a greater understanding of the industry and also to make future contacts. We also offer an annual award which is supported by Paul Smith and includes career mentoring and work experience at his London design studio.

Where do students do work placements?

Placements are a very important part of our students development as designers and are undertaken during year 2.  Companies that have offered placements include: Alexander McQueen, Basso and Brooke, Burberry, French Connection, Holly Fulton, Mary Katrantzo, Giles Deacon, Mulberry, M & S, Vivienne Westwood, On/Off, Jasper Conran, Orla Keiley, Harrods Own Label, John Pierre Braganza, Julian McDonald, Fashion East, Crumpet , George, Lulu Guinness, Pattern Print Studio, Designers Guild, Trend Stop and Oasis.

About living in Colchester

Does the University have Student Accommodation?  

A wide range of affordable accommodation is offered to new students. Click here to find out more. 

Where is Colchester located? 

Colchester is in the south east of England, surrounded by beautiful east-Anglian countryside.  The coast line, with picturesque towns such as Mersey, Frinton and Wivenhoe are just a few miles away. London is easily accessible, just 50 mins by train. Stanstead Airport is approximately 45 mins by car.

What is Colchester town like?

Colchester has a colourful history dating back over 2000 years and is Britain’s oldest recorded town. The town has award winning museums where you can see collections of national importance. As well as being inspiration for famous 19th century artists like Constable and Gainsborough and 20th century equestrian artists Munnings, Colchester offers contemporary art galleries and art cafes where you can see and buy locally produced art and design. Colchester has a good mix of high street fashion stores, independent shops, charity shops, places to eat, a cinema and coffee shops.

Is the night life good?

In addition student life on the Essex University campus, there is a lively nightlife scene in Colchester, student night is on a Thursday when clubs often offer cheaper drinks and entry. Yates and Slug and Lettuce offer 241 cocktails, other recommended bars include Three Wise Monkeys, Twisters and VBar, while Hudsons and Atik are the clubbing hotspots.

Does Colchester have a cultural scene?

Colchester has a vibrant cultural scene with many art and historical events happening all year round. Leading venues such as the Colchester arts centre, The Minories, Firstsite, The Mercury Theatre and Colchester Castle all have extensive programmes of events bringing together art and culture of a national significance to the town on a regular basis.

Is it easy to get a part time job in Colchester?

Many students successfully combine part time work with study on the course. The town centre is a 10 minute walk from the college and many students work here. There are plenty of shops, bars and restaurants in Colchester which provide part-time jobs with flexible student friendly hours. 

Careers after graduation.

What career options are there following the course?

Our feedback shows that 80% of our graduates find employment; this is higher than the national average.  The breadth of the course enables our Graduates to find work in a variety of areas and at all levels of the industry, from well-known high-street brands such as Ted Baker, Monsoon and Asos to high end luxury labels including Burberry, Harrods own Label and Paul Smith. Students work as; Designers, Pattern cutters, Garment Technologists, Product Developers, Buyers, Visual Merchandising, Public Relations, Print designers, Print studio managers, Trend Forecasters, Teachers.

Can you continue studying after finishing the course?

Students may apply to join graduate schemes to pursue careers in Buying, Retail management or Marketing. Some students wish to continue studying and specialise further for example we currently have 3 students at the Royal College of Art studying Textiles. Students may decide to study for a PGCE if they wish to go into teaching.


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Disclaimer

All Fees and prices shown on the website are for courses starting in the 2018-19 academic year and correct at the time of entering/printing information, however these may be subject to change. The College cannot accept legal or financial liability as a result of any such changes. Fees for courses starting in the 2019-20 academic year will be added to the website from December 2018.

The course information describes programmes offered by Colchester Institute. The College takes all reasonable steps to provide courses as described, but cannot guarantee provision. The information is for guidance and does not form any part of a contract.

The College reserves the right to update and amend information as and when necessary. Colchester Institute will do its best to provide the courses shown, but may have to modify or withdraw a course depending on customer demand and other factors.