Cardiff School of Art & Design>Courses>Fashion Design - BA (Hons) Degree

Fashion Design - BA (Hons) Degree

Entry Year

Become a responsible designer ready to shape the industry.

Fashion expresses our values, culture and society. More importantly, it influences and shapes them.

This degree will allow you to explore your individual talents through the professional design process. It is designed to reflect contemporary practice and to inspire you to succeed in this ever-evolving industry. The degree embeds originality and risk-taking right into the design process, from concept to final product, with consideration for commercial viability, experimentation and creativity at its core.

You will become multi-skilled, flexible, resourceful and creative fashion practitioners with well-developed transferable and interpersonal skills. You will work within a creative environment with well-equipped workshops and studios that support our vibrant student community, where personal talent and individual development are shared, exchanged and nurtured.

You'll gain an understanding of the ethical issues facing the fashion industry, allowing you to graduate as a responsible designer ready to shape the industry.

​Course Content​

From the beginning you’ll work on your portfolio – your way into the fashion world. You regularly add to it, review it and refine it – so when you graduate, it’s ready to showcase your talent and body of work.

You’ll spend time in the studio, developing essential skills in a range of techniques, including:

  • Broad-Range Creative Research   
  • Design Processes, Experimentations & Developments
  • Fashion Drawing, Communication & Illustration
  • Creative Cutting
  • Design & Flat Pattern Drafting
  • Stand Modelling & Draping
  • Design and Tailoring
  • Garment Production and Industry Manufacture.
  • Integration Design, Technology and Theory.
  • Photoshop, Illustrator and Cad Software
  • Fabric, Colour, Trends, Market Research and Forecasting  
  • Designing & Range Building
  • Designers Professional Portfolio Presentation

As you start to master these skills, you’ll begin to construct garments and bring your designs to life. 

There are also opportunities to take part in live briefs, industry placements and study trips abroad – all designed to broaden your horizons and give you crucial insight into this dynamic industry.

Year One

Subject: Fashion Fundamentals - 40 credits*
Dive into the exciting world of fashion design and learn about the key stages involved in the creative process from initial design idea to final product. Bringing together industry knowledge, trend research and fashion forecasting, this module will guide you through design and development while challenging you to reach your creative potential. In addition to the creative and technical skills introduced, you will also learn professional fashion communication skills supported by computer aided design (CAD).

Subject: Fashion Visualisation - 20 credits
Spend your first term exploring the contemporary fashion design landscape – and how you can find your place in it. As you start to develop your individual working method, you’ll learn about form, silhouette and fabric. You’ll document your experiments and techniques in sketchbooks – with drawings and design ideas. And you’ll take on creative briefs that challenge any notions about what fashion is – or what it could be.

Research Basics - 20 credits*
This module aims to develop students' core academic research skills including locating sources, evaluating credibility, and analysing information. It will provide the foundations from which students will cultivate their confidence to engage in theoretical discourse and idea-driven dialogues which will be required throughout their undergraduate studies.

Interdisciplinary Understanding - 40 credits
This module aims to introduce you to the principles of Interdisciplinary working: collaborative working, critical thinking and reflection. Projects within the module will challenge you to work with another discipline to explore a societal and cultural theme or challenge.

Year Two

Subject: Fashion Industry - 40 credits
Your studies become more industry-centred as you start your second year. There’s a growing professional focus as you expand the skills and knowledge you need to design and produce clothing that makes an impact. You’ll get exposure to different areas of the industry through live and simulated briefs – as well as fresh perspectives from a variety of brands and designers. And you’ll take on challenging projects using both traditional techniques and new technologies.

21st Century Challenges - 40 credits
The 21st Century Challenges module builds upon the introduction to Interdisciplinary problem-solving developed at level 4 to continue to refine, and begin to apply, your skillsets through real-world projects and live briefs. Projects will tackle 21st Century Challenges to develop your leadership, collaboration, future literacy/critical thinking skillsets.

Real-World Contexts - 20 credits
The Real-World Contexts module challenges you to apply the situated awareness and future-thinking skills to deploy your own practice in the creation or promotion of value for a variety of external stakeholders and communities.

Research Proposal - 20 credits*
The Research Proposal offers you an opportunity to strengthen your research skills, consolidate your research experience and orientate your level 6 contribution around an enquiry of your choosing that is inspired by your learning across all modules at level 4 and 5. This research proposal will be used to continue your personal and professional development at level 6 where you will identify a route for your own enquiry.

Year Three

Subject: Major Fashion Project - 60 credits
Prepare for your future goals with a major research and design project – designed to help you identify the direction of your portfolio. You’ll investigate garment shape and silhouette as well as form and finish – and advance your design through pattern cutting and toiling processes. And you’ll bring your creative vision to life – producing work that challenges creativity through research, design development and translation.

Positioning in Practice - 20 credits
The module aims to support your readiness in developing your unique professional career. It will embed attributes reflective of the requirements of real-world practice aligned to your specialist discipline.

You will have the opportunity to reflect upon how your experiences over the last 3 years have allowed you to position yourself as a professional in preparation for graduate level work, continued study, research, and entrepreneurial ventures.

Contribution - 40 credits*
Your practice is underpinned by your knowledge. Demonstrate your research and analysis skills in your final research submission, where you explore ideas in both written and practical forms​.

* modules available through the medium of Welsh

Learning & Teaching

All programmes within CSAD are delivered through a studio-based approach to learning.

Studio-based learning provides an authentic learning environment which fosters cohort level community building, peer learning whilst being authentic to the demands of the individual disciplines. All studio spaces are bespoke to the needs of the disciplines within which students will receive a variety of learning opportunities including:

Group seminars, group critiques (crits) & presentations, one to one tutorials, technical workshops, peer learning, independent guided learning.

Students take a significant lead in their studies, develop their own research focus and expertise base and actively engage with the process of assessment and the manner in which their individual expertise is expressed and tested.

Students will be supported as they work autonomously such that they are able to generate significant and unique learning through rigorous, self-directed and collaborative practice.​


Throughout the duration of your studies, you will be evaluated on three main criteria, which underpin all of the disciplines being taught at CSAD: 

The practical, technical and conceptual skills you acquire during your course. 

Your understanding and knowledge of broader intellectual context within which your discipline and work is located. This includes historical, environmental and ethical issues and will often be explored in your 'Theory and Context' modules. 

Your understanding of intellectual and creative ideas from within and beyond your discipline; plus your ability to acquire new concepts and form new ideas. Ideas will be explored in your written work, as well as being evident in your practical progress. 

Each of these criteria is given equal weighting during the assessment process. That is to say that they are seen as equally important and critical to your development; an emphasis which is designed, for example, to enable a more well-rounded skill set from a student who may be skilled technically, but weak in generating ideas, or a student with much creative flair who may struggle to hone a broad concept into a strong, individual design. 

We provide a number of ways for you to track your progress en route to submitting your work for marking. Understanding that the emphases will revolve around the core areas of skills, context and ideas, you will also become familiar with the structured assessment form used by your tutors and learn to relate to your work back to the intended learning outcomes of each brief. 

The main types of formative assessment are; academic (feedback from your tutors); peer (from your course-mates or project partners); and self-assessment (which is your own critique, in light of other forms of feedback). You won't just be receiving feedback at the end of a brief, however – your tutors will often assess your progress as your work develops, providing formative feedback at crucial moments where it is hoped to encourage you to take risks, maintain your motivation or shape-up your ideas ahead of deadline.

Employability & Careers​

​During the course emphasis will have been placed upon your work ethic, both creatively and academically, matched with significant focus on real experience in industry and with the current issues in the world of Fashion design. The strength of this course is that as well as giving you an insight into the glamour and excitement of the industry, your studies will include real world skills development and will ask challenging questions of ethical and ecological practice in an international context.

Cardiff Met Fashion Design students and graduates have taken up opportunities with a wide range of well-known brands including Burberry, Givenchy Paris, Renli Su, Julien McDonald, Tu at Sainsburys, SeaSalt and George at Asda.

In addition to the role of the designer, associated specialisms that might interest you as career options leading from your studies are: Garment Technology, Accessory Design, Retail Buying, Fashion Illustration, Merchandising, Fashion Styling, Textile design, Fashion Public Relations, Fashion Writing/Blogging.

For postgraduate study opportunities we offer an MA Fashion Design course. The course aims to generate unique responses to market trends and technological demands, nurturing an understanding of contemporary design within global contexts.

Entry Requirements​ & How to Apply

Typical Offers

  • Tariff points: 96-120
  • Contextual offer: See our contextual offers page.
  • GCSE: Preferably five GCSEs at Grade C / 4 or above to include English Language / Welsh First Language, Mathematics / Mathematics – Numeracy.
  • English Language Requirement: Academic IELTS 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in all elements, or equivalent.
  • A level: Minimum three A levels. No specific subjects required. Welsh Baccalaureate – Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate considered as a third subject.
  • BTEC National / Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma: MMM-DDM
  • T Level: No specific subjects required.
  • Access to Higher Education Diploma: No specific subjects required.
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma: 24 points. No specific subjects required.
  • Irish Leaving Certificate: No specific subjects required. Higher level subjects only considered with a minimum grade H4.
  • Scottish Advanced Highers: No specific subjects required.
  • Other requirements: Successful interview and portfolio review. Applicants will be required to submit a digital portfolio.

Combinations of the above qualifications are accepted if they meet our minimum requirements. If your qualifications aren’t listed, please contact Admissions or refer to the UCAS Course Search.

Further information on Overseas qualifications can be found here.

If you are a mature applicant, have relevant experience or RPL that you would like us to consider, please contact Admissions.

How to Apply

Further information on how to apply can be found here.

Tuition Fees, Student Finance & Additional Costs

For up to date information on tuition fees and the financial support that may be available whilst at university, please refer to

Undergraduate costs of study in CSAD 


CSAD provides a variety of basic materials. These enable students to develop their competence in a range of skills and demonstrate their technical ability. Materials needed in unusual quantities, or those that are specialised, expensive or unusual are at the student’s expense. Advice will be given about how ‘unusual’ is defined, which materials are deemed to be ‘expensive’, and examples given of what is viewed to be ‘unusual’. CSAD students often elect to spend on materials they prefer to work with, including sketchbooks and pens, as well as specialist equipment of their own choosing. 

In the main, no charges are made for the use of equipment, with the exception of some specialist high end equipment such as the Mimaki and 3D printers. Access to Cardiff FabLab is subject to student membership; it offers reduced fees for student use. 

For further information about additional course costs, including fees, equipment requirements and other charges for each undergraduate programme, please visit

Field trips and visits 

Field trips that are part of core learning will be paid for by the School. Additional visits are occasionally arranged which are optional and where the students may be asked to share the costs. The costs of study abroad, including exchanges, placements and projects are the responsibility of the individual student.

Contact Us

For general enquiries please contact the Admissions Team on 029 2041 6044, email or tweet us @CMetAdmissions.

For course specific enquiries, please contact BA (Hons) Fashion Design Admissions Tutor, Nick Thomas:​

Tel:  029 2041 6637

We endeavour to deliver courses as described and will not normally make changes to courses, such as course title, content, delivery, and teaching provision. However, it may be necessary for the university to make changes in the course provision before or after enrolment. It reserves the right to make variations to content or delivery methods, including discontinuation or merging courses if such action is considered necessary. Please read our Terms and Conditions for the full information.

Key Course Information

UCAS Code:
N84C - 3 year degree

Place of Study: 
Llandaff Campus

Cardiff School of Art & Design

Course Length:
Three years full-time. Four years full-time if undertaking year-long sandwich placement.


Photography StudiosOur photographic facilities include three lighting studios equipped with electronic flash, Tungsten and LED lighting, and a wet darkroom for traditional photographic processes.

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Fabric Print WorkshopOur Fabric Print Workshop facilitates traditional and modern techniques, such as screen printing, chemical and natural dyeing and digital sublimation printing.

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Fashion Design StudiosOur spacious Fashion Design Studios are equipped with everything needed for garment construction and finishing, including industry standard sewing machines and overlockers.

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