Footwear Design BA (Hons)

Footwear Design BA (Hons)

The only single honours Footwear Design degree in the UK that explores the fascinating and complex shoe design process, enabling you to acquire the knowledge and skills that will set you apart from others in the fashion sector.

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Overview

Watch: Take a look at this stunning showcase of our Vijay Patel Building, home to DMU's art and design courses.


With a rich heritage from the end of the 19th century to the contemporary footwear industry, this degree will help to equip you with the skills and experience to set you apart in the fashion sector. You will be working directly with industry professionals and big brands to gain valuable insights into new products and technologies.  

Throughout the course your shoe design and technical making skills will be developed, emphasising the crucial relationship between design and manufacture and the needs of the footwear industry. You can specialise in performance footwear, which is unique for a UK university, or men’s, women’s, or children’s footwear. 

You will develop drawing and illustration, bespoke biomechanics and model prototyping skills, along with the ability to present and communicate ideas and concepts to a high professional standard. You will learn technical modern shoemaking skills and make a range of prototype shoes using our excellent specialist studio facilities, including 3D design equipment.

Key features

  • DMU is ranked in the Top 10 for Fashion and Textiles in the UK (Guardian University Guide 2020). 
  • Work on live projects with industry experts to gain valuable skills and experience. Recent briefs have been set by TOMs, New Balance and Sophia Webster.
  • Benefit from opportunities to enter prestigious national and international competitions to boost your industry exposure. Previous graduates have won a number of accolades, including first prizes at the Lineapelle Footwear Competition, the prestigious Bata International Design Award and the Moda Footwear Competition.   
  • This course has a global reputation with industry experts, with recent graduates employed as designers, buyers and agents for well-known names, including Alexander McQueen, Stella McCartney and Kurt Geiger.
  • 100% of our Footwear Design graduates from summer 2017 are in work or further study after graduating (Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education 2016-17 report). 
  • Gain valuable international experience as part of your studies with our DMU Global programme. Previous trips have taken students to visit shoe factories, tanneries and exhibitions in Italy, France and Spain. 
  • The award-winning Vijay Patel Building  provides both the space and the facilities to foster creative thinking, where ideas can develop and flourish for all of our art and design students. 
  • We provide core workshop materials  at no cost, and give cash awards – £150, £200 and £300 in years one, two and three respectively – to support personal materials/printing costs*.

 

Scholarships:

DMU Sports Scholarship
Apply for the DMU Sports Scholarship, worth up to £6,000.

DMU Global High Flyers Award
Our dedicated DMU Global High Flyers Award offers ambitious students a discount of up to £1,000 towards a DMU Global opportunity (terms and conditions apply).

More courses like this:

Fashion Textile Design BA (Hons)

  • UK/EU
  • International

Key facts for UK/EU students

Institution code: D26

UCAS course code: WWF7

Duration: Three years full-time, six years part-time.

Fees and funding: For 2020/21 tuition full-time fees will be £9,250 per year.

Find out more about course tuition fees and available funding.

Students of this course qualify for financial support as part of The DMU Difference. We will provide awards of £150, £200 and £300, for students in years one, two and three respectively, towards materials and specialist printing*.

*Awards are available to students undertaking full-time study and pro-rata for part-time students. Students on placement and therefore not incurring such costs are not eligible for financial assistance.

Important information on The DMU Difference.

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, call us on +44 (0)116 2 50 60 70.

Key facts for international students

Duration: Three years full-time

Fees and funding international: For 2020/21 tuition fees will be £13,750 per year.

Find out more about course fees and available funding.

Students of this course qualify for financial support as part of The DMU Difference. We will provide awards of £150, £200 and £300, for students in years one, two and three respectively, towards materials and specialist printing*.

*Awards are available to students undertaking full-time study and pro-rata for part-time students. Students on placement and therefore not incurring such costs are not eligible for financial assistance.

Important information on The DMU Difference.

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, call us on +44 (0)116 2 50 60 70.

Entry criteria

Typical entry requirements 

A good portfolio and normally:

  • Art and Design Foundation or
  • 112 points from at least 2 A ‘levels and including grade C in Art and Design or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma DMM in an Art and Design related subject or
  • International Baccalaureate: 26+ Points including Art and Design

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

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

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.

Interview and Portfolio

UK applicants with relevant qualifications will be invited to bring their portfolio of work to an open day and interview. Overseas applicants will be invited to send samples of their work. Please see our Footwear Design BA (Hons) portfolio advice for full details.

Structure and assessment

 

Course modules

Teaching and assessments

 

First year

  • 2D/3D Pattern Engineering and Construction
  • Manufacturing Technology
  • Trends and Product Development
  • 3D CAD 1
  • Illustration and Visual Communication
  • Design Cultures 1

Second year

  • Global Live design 1
  • Pro-Trend Style
  • 3D CAD 2
  • Introduction to Fashion/Footwear Business
  • Progressive Trend and Product Development
  • Classic Bespoke and Biomechanical Performance
  • Design Cultures 2

Third year

  • Global Live Design 2
  • Advanced Technical Studies
  • Final Major Project and Portfolio
  • Design Cultures 3

Structure

Teaching methods include formal lectures, group seminars, tutorials, presentations, practical workshops and studio-based activities. Assessment covers 2D work such as research reports, design sketchbooks and presentations boards, 3D work such as shoe prototypes and marketing materials, and formal presentations to peers, staff and external clients.

You are encouraged to enter national and international competitions including the Moda competition, the Worshipful Company of Cordwainers awards, the Worshipful Company of Patternmakers awards and the CIONE biomechanical design award. Our students have had numerous competition successes with recent first prizes at the Lineapelle Footwear Competition in Bologna, the prestigious Bata International Design Award and the Moda Footwear Competition.   

Contact hours

This course 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 15 hours of timetabled taught sessions (lectures and tutorials) each week, and we expect you to undertake at least 24 further hours of independent study to complete project work and research.

 

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.

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.

Campus Centre

The home of  De Montfort Students' Union, (DSU) our Campus Centre offers a welcoming and lively hub for student life. Conveniently located at the heart of campus, it includes a convenience store, a Subway and a Starbucks. Here you can find the DSU-owned charitable accommodation service Sulets and DSU’s shop, SUpplies, selling art supplies, stationery and clothing, and printing and binding services. The building is also home to the DSU officer team. 

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. Previous students have taken up placements at Puma, Clarks and Lacoste.  

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

Our innovative international experience programme DMU Global 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-based activities, overseas study, internships, faculty-led field trips and volunteering, as well as Erasmus+ and international exchanges.  

Students on this course have been on DMU Global trips to shoe factories, tanneries and exhibitions in Italy, France and Spain. They have also visited to Copenhagen to explore sustainability in the fashion and textiles industry and travelled further afield to New York. 

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Graduate careers

Our graduates have forged successful careers within the footwear industry ranging from roles in design, technical development, buying and marketing. They work for big brands internationally such as Gucci, New Balance, L.K.Bennett, Dr. Martens, Irregular Choice, Lacoste, Kickers, Kurt Geiger, Adidas, Dune, Levi’s, Office, Next and Georgina Goodman. 

During Graduate Fashion Week, Dimitri Gabellier secured a sought-after internship with luxury fashion and perfume house Givenchy, in Paris. Since then his career has taken off after accepting a permanent role with the brand as a junior footwear designer. GFW is one of the largest international shows for graduate designers and is seen as a springboard for students to make their way into the industry. 

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The next DMU Open Day will take place on Saturday 17 October

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How to apply

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

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More about your DMU

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Vijay Patel Building
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Art and Design Degree Show

Our Art and Design Degree Show celebrates the talent and innovative work of our final-year art and design students by exhibiting their creations and achievements at a special event. This showcase is a wonderful celebration of all our students’ hard work and provides a fantastic opportunity to display your designs to thousands of visitors including potential employers.

New Art and Design facilities in the Vijay Patel building

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.  

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#IChoseDMU

Find out why our students are proud to say #IchoseDMU.

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Accommodation

We offer a range of high-standard accommodation for our students, with 13 halls of residence and around 4,100 rooms, all of which are a short distance from our campus. There is a choice of mixed or same-gender flats, shared kitchen and laundry facilities, furnished bedrooms (some with en suite facilities) and internet access. Find out more.

 
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