Fashion Communications - MA (-)




University of Nottingham Trent

Fashion Communications - MA

About the course

This exciting and innovative course will equip you with the strategic, creative and commercial skills required by the global fashion industry. It will develop and strengthen your core skills and knowledge in specialist areas, including new concepts and strategies for fashion communications.

Our MA Fashion Communications sits in a suite with the following courses:

You learn alongside students from these other MA courses, and have the option to transfer MA titles if your specialism changes.

Key features

  • Study on a full or part-time basis.
  • Gain knowledge and understanding of how the different areas of the fashion industry work together, and choose your specialist focus.
  • Select from a range of possible outputs to reflect career aspirations or to support a business start-up.
  • Go on study trips to international fashion capitals.
  • Benefit from industry speakers such as international brand managers and fashion specialists.
  • Work individually and as a team in a challenging, creative and multicultural environment within the School of Art & Design.
  • Prepare for further postgraduate study such as MPhil or PhD.
  • Gain a globally recognised academic qualification in conjunction with personal and professional development for employability and entrepreneurship.

What you will study?


Fashion Communications (160 or 180 credit points)

Phase One

The course commences with a four week induction period during which you will be introduced to the Fashion Management, Marketing and Communications (FMMC) framework of postgraduate courses, and the wider School and University.

The induction period will provide you with an understanding of the nature of studying at masters level, the range of resources available to you to support your learning, and the key masters FMMC staff.

You will take part in a short project with the cohort during the induction, which will provide you with insight of the core research and study skills required on the course. Importantly, this is an opportunity to get to know your fellow students, the environment in which you will study, and the teaching team.

Phase Two

During the next 15 weeks, the curriculum will introduce you to the core subjects of marketing, management, branding, and communications. You'll study key industry sectors, such as fashion and textiles, and the operational activities of fashion organisations, including roles and responsibilities, process and practice. This period will provide a platform of knowledge enabling you to appreciate the complexity and essential inter relatedness of the fashion industry.

The curriculum delivered during this period will help you to develop and apply core research skills, gain professional communication skills, and to acquire IT proficiency using Adobe InDesign. Business, marketing, and fashion theory will be addressed in relation to each industry sector. The acquisition of specialist academic and industry vocabulary will be supported during the teaching sessions, and through English Language classes. Key employability skills are embedded throughout the teaching and learning for this module, by examining real life industry challenges.

Your first assignment requires you to demonstrate that you can apply your research skills, knowledge of the fashion industry, and communication skills to a complex industry problem.

Phase Three

The core aim of the curriculum is to provide a breadth and depth of specialist knowledge in the four FMMC subject areas of marketing, management, branding, and communications, and to continue to advance your research skills. This knowledge and understanding will form the basis from which you can identify your MA title (Fashion Communications, Fashion Marketing, International Fashion Management, or Luxury Fashion Brand Management). You'll also be taught, and apply, advanced reserach methodologies.

You'll undertake a team industry project within one of the for main subject areas (marketing, management, branding, communications), which is designed to assess your knowledge of your chosen subject area. You will negotiate with your team a specialist area of research for the project, and individually author a chapter of the team report. As part of this assignment, each team will give a presentation of their report including their research design, findings, and recommendations.

You'll also write an individual research Project Proposal of 5 - 6,000 words, which will include a substantial review of literature within your chosen subject area. Your Project Proposal will allow you to create, through enquiry and research, a credible and feasible project plan which is essential at the initial stages of a research or business project. All students will be supervised for their Project Proposal assignment in teams with a specialist tutor.

If you opt to complete this module as 160 credit points, you'll also undertake the 20 credit point module Advanced Art and Design Research which will provide you with enhanced research skills and insight into further postgraduate study.

In early Spring you will have the option to undertake an optional international study trip. The purpose of this study visit is to gain personal insight into the fashion industry. This might include visits to an international industry trade show, fashion organisation, fashion exhibitions, and events, and to experience a different business and cultural environment. Students who are unable to attend will be provided with a similar experience in the UK.

Phase Four

The final months of the course combine theoretical, creative and practical subjects, to prepare you to move into senior strategic roles within the fashion industry. There will be a significant emphasis on advanced modes and methods of communication for creative strategies in the global fashion industry.

Through the further development of research and analytical skills, you will acquire a fully integrated knowledge of international fashion communications, related contexts, and relative professions.

You will undertake a substantial research project or thesis in your chosen field. You will receive supervision from a subject specialist. Specialist lectures will provide wider subject knowledge and industry contextualisation, and a series of workshops will develop you as a professional. You will be further supported with personal and pastoral tutorials. If relevant, you will continue to receive tutorials with an English language tutor to help develop specific aspects of your writing during the final stages of your project.

Your final project will be an in-depth piece of original research with a theoretical, practical or applied use. You will be expected to research and evaluate an area of fashion communications in detail, and then present a professional and creative output relevant to the subject matter and target audience. The final output could take a variety of forms, a report, a business plan, a range proposal, marketing strategy, a research paper, or dissertation. How you communicate the output may also take different forms and can be agreed by you and your supervisor.

Advanced Art and Design Research (20 credit points)

This module will support your reflection on your research and practice through discursive lectures and coursework assignments. In these, you will contribute accounts of your postgraduate research enquiry, its antecedents in your practice and academic study, as well as your understanding of the role your practice can play in it.

After an initial diagnosis phase, where you’ll outline your perspectives on research, you’ll be introduced to an overview of the philosophical assumptions that underlie research across disciplines. You’ll also identify where these feature in your experience of education and practice.

You’ll be introduced to the literature on practice based research that has grown out of PhD activity in Art, Design and Performance, in which you will discover the direction you want your work to take. The module then identifies a range of practice based approaches that are found across disciplines from education to archaeology, and laboratory science.

The second phase of the module brings these insights to be applied to your practice, so that it can be an element in a research design that will contribute to knowledge. This process includes a reflective audit of the research dimensions of your practice, to identify elements of it that could be part of a research design. The outcome of this audit will help you to build a prospective view of the design of potential research processes that include your practice, as well as appropriate modes of analysis and reporting.

At the end of the module you will write up your responses to the discursive lectures, supplementing them with appropriate visual material (no more than 3,000 words).

How you’re taught

Teaching and learning experiences will include:

  • lectures;
  • seminars;
  • workshops;
  • individual and group tutorials;
  • peer group activities;
  • presentations;
  • directed and self-directed learning;
  • access to NTU's online workspace;
  • team working;
  • personal development planning; and
  • work-based learning.


Assessment is 100% by coursework and involves:

  • presentations (individual and team);
  • Project Proposal; and
  • individual project.

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