Key facts

Entry requirements

112 or DMM

Full entry requirements

UCAS code

W2N1

Institution code

D26

Duration

3 yrs full-time

Three years full-time, four years full-time with a placement. Six years part-time.

Fees

2024/25 UK tuition fees:
£9,250

2024/25 international tuition:
£15,750

Additional costs

Entry requirements

UCAS code

W2N1

Institution code

D26

Duration

3 yrs full-time

Three years full-time, four years full-time with a placement. Six years part-time

Fees

2024/25 UK tuition fees:
£9,250

2024/25 international tuition:
£15,750

Additional costs

Expert subject staff are on hand to guide students in their progression through a strong tutoring system and network of opportunity

The fashion industry is rapidly evolving: technological developments, global influences and shifts in consumer behaviour mean that there has never been a more exciting time to study Fashion Business.

You will study fashion business models and strategies, marketing, buying, data analytics, with digital transformation, sustainability and responsible business practice being overarching principles.

With access our award-winning facilities, you are able to experience a ‘hands on’ approach to learning about fashion product through our textile labs. This makes our Fashion Business a unique course that also offers an option to transfer to the Fashion Buying with Marketing or Merchandising course after the first year. Expert subject staff are on hand to guide students in their progression through a strong tutoring system and network of opportunity.

  • Connect with external Associations and trade organisations such as Association of Suppliers to the British Clothing Industry (ASBCI) and Association for Fashion Business Employability (AFBE) to grow your skills and confidence and your network.
  • Engage with industry partners to learn exciting insights that could inspire you, feed into your work, and connect you with your future role.
  • Learn fashion finance – the budgets, trading forecasts, effective sales analysis and planning.
  • Develop industry-recognised merchandising expertise through an understanding of range building, sales forecasting, critical path management and presentation skills.
A new way to learn

Our new student-centred course structure, known as Education 2030, is designed to give you the headspace to absorb and better engage with your learning materials. By studying one module at a time through 'block learning', you'll get feedback faster, be able to work more closely with your tutors and have more time to be part of your DMU community. It's already proven popular with our first cohort of undergraduate students, with 93% stating they enjoyed studying one module at a time.

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What you will study

Block 1: Fashion Consumer and Marketplace

This module will introduce the concept of commercial awareness and the basic activities of the buying function through the Fashion Buying Cycle. Physical bricks and mortar stores, ecommerce and the future of retail experience will be explored. The module will offer an overview of the changing retail landscape at an introductory level. You will also be introduced to fashion roles and responsibilities, fabric identification, construction methods and Excel spreadsheets which will give crucial foundation knowledge for future modules.

Assessment: 100% report

Block 2: Fashion Business

This module teaches the fundamental principles of fashion business within a global context. The module will inform at an introductory level the subjects of fashion business innovation, marketing, merchandising, strategy, and digital enterprise. You will be taught the use of Microsoft Excel to develop a range plan and critical path. Additionally, you will explore and apply relevant theoretical concepts in the areas of fashion innovation, marketing, and business strategy to underpin your understanding of contemporary issues within these subject areas of fashion business.

Assessment: 100% report

Block 3: Fashion Lifecycle

This module explores the buying process from trend and colour prediction, range planning, product development and the role of sustainable sourcing, through critical path management to sales analysis and trading. You will communicate and present ideas through Adobe Creative Suite to develop a range of garments, implementing knowledge gained on fabric identification. Adobe skills will be developed enabling you to become CAD proficient, while developing your own digital portfolio.

Assessment: 100% digital portfolio

Block 4: Sustainable Futures

This module engages you in personal reflection and development with consideration to your professionalism and your future impact in the fashion world. The module content is further underpinned by theoretical studies delivered by the Design Cultures to contextualise current practice within an historical framework. You will consider origins and influences - how traditions develop and evolve in response to social and political - as well as research methods, visual literacy, and the skills for academic writing. Sessions will promote interaction and analytical thinking with an understanding of inclusive and ethical practice.

Assessment: 50% presentation and 50% assignment

Block 1: Business Models and Fashion Management

This module will emphasise the importance of analysis within global fashion business models, change management strategies and risk analysis, to apply statistical models as a means of problem solving and making informed business decisions. It includes theories, models, frameworks, tasks, and roles of management, including the management of people and corporate social responsibility, together with rational analysis and other processes of decision-making within different organisations.

Assessment: 80% business report and 20% group presentation

Block 2: Design Innovation and Sustainable Futures

This module teaches the fundamental principles of sustainable design innovation and the future of fashion within a global context. The module will examine the key issues and considerations of sustainability from a design innovation perspective. The module will introduce the circular economy with consideration of the implications of cost versus planet. You will explore and apply relevant theoretical concepts in the areas of design innovation, sustainability, and fashion business.

Assessment: 100% written assignment

Block 3: Fashion Business Analytics

This module will give you the opportunity to use business analytics and predictive analytics to justify product development, business decisions and determine fiscal management decisions. Data science meets fashion, with the use of predictive and survival analysis. Past, current and future trends and patterns will be analysed against the changing economy. The tools used will include industry software and will examine typical fashion data such as financial trading sheets, product performance and category analysis. Business theories and strategies will be contextualised and will enable the student to review the performance of business to make informed decisions and recommendations for both ethical and financial gain.

In addition, a mentoring programme (Gurus and Grasshoppers) will run alongside this module whereby second year students will manage and mentor a small assignment with a group of first year students. The aim is to build their community and connections and develop their leadership and people management skills to enhance employability

Assessment: 60% presentation and 40% phase test

Block 4: Fashion Marketing, Communications and Branding 

This module has been designed to provide you an appreciation of Fashion Marketing and how the industry uses specific tools to promote and entice consumers into purchasing its products through persuasive ways of promotion. Subjects studied include market research, consumer behaviour, digital marketing, marketing strategies, PR, Editorials, Promotional techniques, Branding and Brand Equity all within a commercial fashion context. This module is future focussed on exploring contemporary methods of digital marketing and social commerce. Throughout this module you will have to build relevant skills such as critical thinking, problem solving, strategic decision making, presenting, analytical skills and self-directed research

Assessment: 50% CAD portfolio and 50% branding report

Block 1 and 2

Fashion Business Solution

This module will emphasise the importance of the functions and processes within fashion business, including corporate behaviours and cultures and their influence upon the external and internal environment. You will build a strategic business plan for the retail industry, exploring strategic changes within the organisation and addressing societal and economical challenges. You will also consider economic impact and develop a plan for a circular system, leveraging circular and sustainable solutions for the business in conjunction with an NGO enterprise, working towards a standard such as B-Corporation certification. A business structure and framework that considers people, planet and profit as a core value of the business with a focus on the internal and external stakeholders within an organisation.

Assessment: 60% presentation and 40% business plan

And

Fashion Enterprise and Innovation 

This module offers the opportunity for you to build your enterprise skills and push innovative concepts in a professional context, in response to an industry-led brief. You will apply innovative design thinking and problem-solving tools and techniques to produce solutions to real-world problems. You will also learn to define problems using design thinking tools, underpinned by the Design Council’s Double Diamond 4D model (Discover, Define, Develop and Deliver).

Assessment: 60% presentation and 40% research poster

Block 3 and 4: Major Research Project

This module will allow you to select your own area of interest from fashion buying/marketing/merchandising/business, to carry out rigorous research and create a piece of original work under supervision. Support will be given by a supervisor to help guide the creation of a project plan with continued guidance in the management of the project.

You will develop competency in research skills including using literature to develop and support your arguments on your topic. You will also learn how to justify your approach for selecting and using information from a range of sources and will learn how to present your findings.

Assessment: 90% written and 10% presentation

Note: All modules are indicative and based on the current academic session. Course information is correct at the time of publication and is subject to review. Exact modules may, therefore, vary for your intake in order to keep content current. If there are changes to your course we will, where reasonable, take steps to inform you as appropriate.

Structure

You will learn through a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars, group work and self-directed study. There are regular tutorials and reviews which allow you to reflect on and develop your work.

Assessment is through coursework, presentations, phase-tests, essays and reports. This will include live projects with industry and an option of a research project for your final year.

Contact hours

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars, group work and self-directed study. Assessment is through coursework (presentations, essays and reports) Your precise timetable will depend on the optional modules you choose to take, however, in your first year you will normally attend around 10-15 hours of timetabled taught sessions (lectures and tutorials) each week, and we expect you to undertake at least 25 further hours of independent study to complete project work and research.

Each module provides tutorials for individual consultation with the lecturer. You will also have timetabled meetings with your personal tutor and careers and/or subject meetings scheduled throughout the year.

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Our facilities

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.

Vijay Patel Building

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. It is home to a wide range of resources and facilities, including:

  • Fashion studios: The building has a number of fashion studios, where students can design, create, and prototype their garments.
  • Textile workshops: The building has a number of textile workshops, where students can learn how to work with a variety of textiles, including fabrics, yarns, and fibers.
  • Fashion technology labs: The building has a number of fashion technology labs, where students can learn how to use a variety of fashion technology, including CAD software, pattern-making software, and sewing machines.
  • Exhibition spaces: The building has a number of exhibition spaces, where students can showcase their work.

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.

The building is striking and innovative, with a large central atrium filled with natural light. It has a variety of teaching and learning spaces, studios, workshops, and exhibition spaces.

It is a major landmark on the De Montfort University campus and provides students and staff with the space and resources they need to thrive.

Our expertise

We are one of the country’s most sustainable fashion and textiles schools (Green Gown Awards, 2021) and one of the best fashion schools in the world for 2022 and 2023 (CEOWORLD, 2023). 

Profile picture for Joanne Lewis

Joanne Lewis

Program Leader - Fashion Business

Experienced Fashion Buying, Sourcing, and Sustainability lecturer. 20+ years in the industry working for leading Denim brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, and G-star.

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Siobhan Merrall

Senior lecturer

Expert in apparel merchandising and global sourcing, with a comprehensive retailing background. Committed to student employability and fostering mental health awareness.

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Fiona Bailey

Programme Leader for Fashion Management BA (Hons)

Senior Fashion Business Lecturer with extensive fashion buying and project management experience, including the London 2012 Olympics sponsorship program. Entrepreneurial background founding the sustainable luxury brand Kingdom of Origin. Research focus on Gen Z's online behaviour and fashion innovation in mass-market retail. Co-authoring a fashion innovation textbook and consulting for brands and retailers on innovation and digital search strategies.

Where we could take you

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Placements

This course gives you the option to enhance and build your professional skills to progress within your chosen career, through a placement. Our dedicated team offers a range of careers resources and opportunities so you can start planning your future.

We have excellent links with the fashion industry, ensuring you work on industry relevant projects and client briefs to gain more experience and build your external reputation before you graduate. This invaluable experience can enrich student capabilities and their final-year projects. Students have gone to big brands including Reiss, Boohoo, ASOS, George at Asda, Ralph Lauren, Timberland, Matalan, and O’Neill (Amsterdam).

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Graduate careers

Our graduates go on to work in a variety of areas within fashion. Recent employers include ASOS, Selfridges, Next, Reiss, Marks & Spencer, River Island, and Joules, among many others.

Course specifications

Course title

Fashion Business

Award

BSc (Hons)

UCAS code

W2N1

Institution code

D26

Study level

Undergraduate

Study mode

Full-time

Part-time

Start date

September 2024

Duration

Three years full-time, four years full-time with a placement. Six years part-time.

Fees

2024/25 UK tuition fees:
£9,250

2024/25 international tuition:
£15,750

Additional costs

Entry requirements

Typical entry requirements

We welcome applicants from a range of backgrounds.

  • Art and Design Foundation or
  • 112 points from at least 2 A ‘levels
  • BTEC Extended Diploma DMM
  • International Baccalaureate: 26+ Points or
  • T Levels Merit

Plus five GCSEs grades 9-4 including English Language or Literature, and Maths at grade 4 or above.

  • Pass Access with 30 Level 3 credits at Merit and GCSE English (Language or Literature) and Maths at grade 4 or above

We will normally require students to have had a break from full time education before undertaking the Access course.

  • We also accept the BTEC First Diploma plus two GCSEs including English Language, Literature and Maths at grade 4 or above

English language requirements

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.

Interview and portfolio

Interview required: No

Portfolio required: No

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, which for this programme could include the following:

  • Art and Design materials; £50 in your first and second years, increasing to £100 in your third year.
  • Field trips or visits: £30 in your first year, £100-£300 in your second year and £400-600 in your third year.

There will also be a range of optional showcasing activities that will be available to you, the costs of which will vary depending on the opportunities you choose.

Learn more about fees and funding information