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Contour Fashion Innovation MA

Explore creativity, technologies and entrepreneurship within the changing global landscape of the specialised field of Contour Fashion, and develop the skills to become a successful innovator in the industry.

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Overview

Due to high application demand and COVID restrictions for teaching on campus, we have now closed applications for international student places onto our Postgraduate Taught 12 month programmes starting in September/October 2020, and are no longer accepting deposits for this intake. If you have already paid your deposit and requested (but not received) your CAS we will be in touch to clarify your individual situation. Many of our courses benefit from multiple intakes, including options to start in January 2021, please contact us for more information.


Contour Fashion is a huge, established and specialised field within fashion design. It is defined by garments worn close to, or shaping the contours of the human form, including corsetry, lingerie, swimwear, performance sportswear, nightwear and athleisure. The Contour Fashion Innovation MA is ideal for contour graduates wishing to further their practice, or fashion or textile graduates who want to specialise in contour design.

The course explores creativity, technologies and entrepreneurship, alongside the technical considerations of this complex specialism. Contextual studies into historical, political, social and cultural considerations are at the core of this programme and fuel intellectual curiosity, speculative enquiry, imagination, and divergent thinking to successfully understand design concepts.

During this course, we prepare our graduates to succeed in this competitive and fast-developing industry. Our unparalleled understanding of the sector informs the curriculum and includes loungewear, sportswear and athleisurewear – these specialisms are in high demand following the global shift to remote working which has led to a growth in comfort-inspired, fashion-driven work attire. Marketing and visual communication is examined from the viewpoint of a creative individual, giving you the skills to develop a leading-edge portfolio and the insight into how a contour fashion label might be launched into the market place.

You will learn to take a critical and innovative approach to contemporary global challenges facing designers and businesses, with a focus on sustainable practice embedded throughout. 

Key features

  • Specialist contour design and complex technical skills are explored in depth, considering enhanced aesthetics, fit and production.
  • Learn from the founders of contour education with over 70 years of teaching in this evolving specialism.
  • Contour boasts a vast global alumni network closely connected to the university. Teaching staff are industry experts and taught methodologies are progressive and industry-relevant.
  • We offer a flexible learning experience with the opportunity to tailor modules in line to specific areas of personal interest in line with your career aspirations.
  • Guest lectures from leading industry professionals and contour-specific commercial and trade fair visits complement the course.
  • The multinational community within the School of Fashion and Textiles creates a supportive learning environment for students from around the world.
  • Our award-winning Vijay Patel building has been designed to provide the space and facilities where all of our art and design students can develop their ideas and flourish.
  • DMU puts the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the heart of the university’s activities and is a  Global Hub for SDG 16, which addresses Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions. Sustainable practice is embedded throughout this programme’s curriculum.

Scholarships:

At DMU, we are committed to helping our graduates enhance their careers and personal development through further study.

Vice-Chancellor’s 2020 Scholarship
Up to 50 per cent of tuition fees offered to Home/EU DMU alumni for students who wish to continue their studies at DMU by enrolling on a Postgraduate taught course. For more information visit our Vice-Chancellor’s 2020 Scholarship page.

Vice-Chancellor's Sports Scholarship
Apply for the Vice-Chancellor's Sports Scholarship, worth up to £6,000.

More courses like this:

Fashion and Textiles MA

  • UK/EU
  • International

Key facts for UK/EU students

Duration: One year full-time, two years part-time.

Start date: September 2020


Fees and funding: For 2020/21 tuition fees for UK/EU students will be £8,100 (full-time) per year, £4,050 (part-time) per year

Find out more about course fees and available funding.

Additional costs: Here at DMU we provide excellent learning resources, including the Kimberlin Library and specialist workshops and studios. However, you should be aware that sometimes you may incur additional costs for this programme.

Contact us: For more information complete our online enquiry form or call us on +44 (0)116 2 50 60 70.

Key facts for international students

Duration: One year full-time

Start date: September 2020


Fees and funding international: For 2020/21 tuition fees will be £14,100 per year

Find out more about course fees and available funding.

Additional costs: Here at DMU we provide excellent learning resources, including the Kimberlin Library and specialist workshops and studios. However, you should be aware that sometimes you may incur additional costs for this programme.

Contact us: For more information complete our online enquiry form or call us on +44 (0)116 2 50 60 70.

Entry criteria

Typical entry requirements 

You should have the equivalent or above of a 2:2 UK undergraduate honours design degree in a contour, fashion design or textile design related subject.

Advanced pattern-cutting skills are also a prerequisite, although do not need to be Contour-product-specific.

If you have other professional qualifications and industry experience we will consider your application on an individual basis.

Interview and Portfolio

A statement of current educational and industrial experience, career aspirations and specific learning expectations from the course should be provided as part of your application.

UK applicants with relevant qualifications will be invited to bring their portfolio of work to an interview.

Overseas applicants will be invited to a skype interview and to send samples of their work digitally. please see our Contour Fashion Innovation MA application portfolio advice for full details.

International students

If English is not your first language an IELTS score of 6.0 overall with 5.5 in each band, or equivalent when you start the course is essential. English Language tuition, delivered by our British Council accredited Centre for English Language Learning, is available both before and throughout the course if you need it.

Structure and assessment

 

Teaching and assessment

Course modules

 

Structure

Through the various modules of this programme you will be able to explore your own areas of interest within the Contour field. Self-directed and independent learning will constitute a majority portion of study and will be supported through regular tutorials with specialist tutors.

Theoretical elements will be explored via formal lectures, seminars and tutorials. Seminars will provide the opportunity to explore concepts in a small group setting. Practical aspects of the programme will be developed through workshops and in the studios.

Staff are experienced Industry professionals, closely connected to their specialism, which ensures that their teaching is progressive and Industry-relevant.

You will have the opportunity to experience international travel to trade fairs, partner educational institutions in Fashion as well as being able to attend guest talks from industry speakers and visits to a range of Fashion businesses, including Contour-specific businesses and suppliers. 

Contact hours

In your first two terms you will normally attend around 10 hours of timetabled taught sessions including lectures, tutorials, workshop and studio sessions each week. You are also expected to undertake at least 25 hours of independent study each week. Your third term will be pre-dominantly self-directed (including meetings with your supervisor), during you can expect to undertake 35 hours of independent study each week.

Part-time study is normally undertaken on a half-time basis.

 

Term one

  • Contour Foundations (core)
  • Research Methods (core)

Choose one module from the following:

  • Design, Innovation and Sustainability (elective)
  • Fashion Promotion and Marketing (elective)
  • Integrated Brand Management (elective)

Term two

  • Contour Creative (core)
  • Supply and Sourcing (core)

Choose one module from the following:

  • Business Planning for Creative Entrepreneurs (elective)
  • Managing Business Web Presence (elective)
  • Critical Perspectives on Ethical and Sustainable Fashion (elective)
  • Global Markets: Designing Businesses for International Growth (elective)

Term three

Choose one of the following:

  • Major Project: Design Concept, OR
  • Major Project: Dissertation, OR
  • Work Based Project/Placement, OR
  • Major Project: Design Practice

 

 

Facilities and features

Art and design facilities

Our award-winning Vijay Patel building has been designed to provide the space and facilities where all of our art and design students can develop their ideas and flourish. 

The creative industries require imaginative graduates who can develop new ideas and products. Students use our sophisticated and contemporary workshops, labs and studios to experiment and test in the same way they will in industry, while the open and transparent spaces in the building encourage collaboration between disciplines. In doing so, the building prepares students for industry and helps develop them as future leaders in their respective fields. 

Take a look at our stunning showcase of the building at dmu.ac.uk/aad.

Library and learning zones

On campus, the main Kimberlin Library offers a space where you can work, study and access a vast range of print materials, with computer stations, laptops, plasma screens and assistive technology also available. 

As well as providing a physical space in which to work, we offer online tools to support your studies, and our extensive online collection of resources accessible from our Library website, e-books, specialised databases and electronic journals and films which can be remotely accessed from anywhere you choose. 

We will support you to confidently use a huge range of learning technologies, including Blackboard, Collaborate Ultra, DMU Replay, MS Teams, Turnitin and more. Alongside this, you can access LinkedIn Learning and learn how to use Microsoft 365, and study support software such as mind mapping and note-taking through our new Digital Student Skills Hub. 

The library staff offer additional support to students, including help with academic writing, research strategies, literature searching, reference management and assistive technology. There is also a ‘Just Ask’ service for help and advice, live LibChat, online workshops, tutorials and drop-ins available from our Learning Services, and weekly library live chat sessions that give you the chance to ask the library teams for help.

 

More flexible ways to learn

We offer an equitable and inclusive approach to learning and teaching for all our students. Known as the Universal Design for Learning (UDL), our teaching approach has been recognised as sector leading. UDL means we offer a wide variety of support, facilities and technology to all students, including those with disabilities and specific learning differences.

Just one of the ways we do this is by using ‘DMU Replay’ – a technology providing all students with anytime access to audio and/or visual material of lectures. This means students can revise taught material in a way that suits them best, whether it's replaying a recording of a class or adapting written material shared in class using specialist software.

 

Opportunities and careers

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Placements

During this course you will have the option to complete a paid placement year, an invaluable opportunity to put the skills developed during your degree into practice. This insight into the professional world will build on your knowledge in a real-world setting, preparing you to progress onto your chosen career. Placements will normally take place between semester two and three. 

Contour students have completed work experience and placements with Agent Provocateur, ASOS, Bordelle, Boux Avenue, Calvin Klein, Clover Hong Kong, Coco de Mer, Crystal Martin, Curvy Kate, Fleur of England, Gymshark, H&M Sweden, Heidi Klein, Jenny Packham, Seafolly Australia, Tommy Hilfiger Amsterdam, Triumph and Victoria’s Secret US. In many cases these placements have led to employment opportunities. 

You will also have the option to undertake a work-based project in the final term, to gain industrial experience at a host company. 

Our careers programme DMU Works can help to hone your professional skills with mock interviews and practice aptitude tests, and an assigned personal tutor will support you throughout your placement. 

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DMU Global

This is our innovative international experience programme which aims to enrich your studies and expand your cultural horizons – helping you to become a global graduate, equipped to meet the needs of employers across the world.

Through DMU Global, we offer a wide range of opportunities including on-campus and UK activities, overseas study, internships, faculty-led field trips and volunteering, as well as Erasmus+ and international exchanges.

While overseas DMU Global opportunities are not currently possible, DMU will continue to review government advice and if travel is permitted, we hope to offer a small number of extra-curricular opportunities in the summer of 2021. 

DMU Global supports a trip to Paris in January where you will have the opportunity to visit the Salon de la Lingerie and Interfiliere trade shows, alongside a broader cultural experience within this fashion capital. This is a fantastic opportunity for students to gather inspiration, source fabrics, discover international markets and create industry networks.

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Graduate careers

Contour Fashion is a specialist area within Fashion design, defined by garments worn close to or shaping the contours of the human form. Traditionally, Contour Fashion graduates have sought careers as designers, technologists and pattern cutters of foundation garments such as corsetry, lingerie and swimwear. Increasingly, roles extend to performance sportswear, athleisure, nightwear, medical, wearable technology and within sustainable advancement.

Graduates from the Contour Fashion Innovation MA may also pursue careers within the contour industry in communications, trend and PR. DMU Contour boasts a rich history of successful entrepreneurs, such as latex lingerie specialist Elissa Poppy, and the Enterprise Team supports students who wish to start their own businesses. 

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How to apply 

We welcome applications from students with a wide range of qualifications and experience.

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Scholarships

Vice-Chancellor’s 2020 Scholarship
Up to 50 per cent of tuition fees offered to Home/EU DMU alumni for students who wish to continue their studies at DMU by enrolling on a Postgraduate taught course. For more information visit our Vice-Chancellor’s 2020 Scholarship page.

New Art and Design facilities in the Vijay Patel building

Events

The best way to find out more about DMU is to attend one of our virtual postgraduate events. Get all the answers to your questions through an online chat with our student and staff advisers, or check out our postgraduate live stream schedule for programme specific talks, to find out how our courses can enhance your knowledge and benefit your career path.

These virtual events are a chance to learn more about our extensive careers and employability support, and find out about fees and funding opportunities, including our VC2020 scholarship which offers up to 50 per cent off PG study, and sports scholarships of up to £6,000. You can also take a tour of our beautiful campus and facilities from the comfort of home via our Virtual Open Day.

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Research

The Faculty of Arts, Design and Humanities is home to research staff with international reputations in a wide range of creative and scholarly fields, blending traditional disciplines of critical enquiry and analysis with practice-based research and creative work employing cutting-edge technology. Find out more

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