Textile Art, Design and Fashion - BA (Hons)

2025/26 Full-time Undergraduate course


Bachelor of Arts with Honours


Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences


Belfast School of Art


Belfast campus

UCAS code:

The UCAS code for Ulster University is U20

Start date:

September 2025

With this degree you could become:

  • Costume Designer
  • Community Arts Facilitator
  • Fashion Designer
  • Lecturer in Further and Higher Education
  • Textile Designer
  • Textile Artist
  • Art Teacher

Graduates from this course are now working for:

  • Decora Blind Systems Ltd
  • Primark UK (Penneys Ireland)
  • Port West Workwear
  • Douglas & Graham Ltd.
  • Dunnes Stores Design Department
  • Eire Designs


We offer a rich, creative, and supportive course where you can develop ideas, skills, and confidence in 5 textiles and fashion specialisms.


Textile Art, Design and Fashion is a unique course. We nurture individual approaches to specialisms in embroidery, knit, weave, print and fashion and after a broad first year, you will select a pathway as an artist, designer, or designer maker in your chosen area. We have 5 well equipped workshops, each supported by an expert technician and excellent studios where we develop both traditional and digital approaches to art and design. We explore the historical, cultural, and contemporary significance of textiles and fashion and encourage sustainable approaches to design. We will support you to work ambitiously towards your chosen career and in dedicated professional practice modules where you will learn from our successful graduates and visiting artists and designers. You will showcase your work to industry professionals through placements, projects, and competitions.

Foundation Year

A foundation diploma year gives you the opportunity to explore a range of art and design approaches and disciplines to help you choose your undergraduate specialism.

We’d love to hear from you!

We know that choosing to study at university is a big decision, and you may not always be able to find the information you need online.

Please contact Ulster University with any queries or questions you might have about:

  • Course specific information
  • Fees and Finance
  • Admissions

For any queries regarding getting help with your application, please select Admissions in the drop down below.

For queries related to course content, including modules and placements, please select Course specific information.

We look forward to hearing from you.

About this course


In first year, this course offers you the chance to work in all our specialist areas with an introduction to embroidery, weave, print, knit and garment construction in our specialist workshops. You will also develop skills in drawing, colour, collage, and CAD in the studios and will learn about the past, present, and future of Textiles and Fashion in seminars and lectures.

In second year, you begin to specialise, selecting a pathway best suited to your creative interests and career aspirations. You will develop ideas, work to briefs, continue to develop as an artist or designer and explore digital and traditional skills and technologies. Future careers and the professional skills needed to begin your professional life are explored in second year. Short placements provide essential work experience and competitions offer the chance to have your work seen by the professionals.

Between second and final year, we offer an optional placement year or the opportunity to study abroad.

In final year you begin with a research project, writing a dissertation or market report and will then devise an ambitious major project and develop a significant portfolio of work and final exhibition. This body of work will showcase your ideas, skills, technical expertise and pathway choice as a textile artist, textile designer, designer maker or fashion designer and your specialism choice in embroidery, weave, print, knit or garment construction. With your future in the creative industries in mind, we also focus on graduate and professional skills to ensure you are well equipped and confident in your future.

Associate awards

Diploma in Professional Practice DPP

Diploma in International Academic Studies DIAS

Diploma in Professional Practice International DPPI


Three/ four years (with placement).

While the Course has specified times for contact teaching for Lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials you are expected to be in their studio's and workshop's engaging in studio practice and project development outside those specific contact teaching times.

Throughout year 1 and 2 of the course each semester is made up of one 20 credit point module and a 40 credit point module. Each credit point equals 10 effort hours, so for a 20 credit module there should be 200 effort hours over the 12 weeks in a semester. For a 20 credit point module you would be timetabled for 3 hours a week with further support on Blackboard Learn. 40 credit point modules have contact teaching for a minimum of 6 hours per week with significant additional support in the workshops from specialist technicians. This supervised workshop experience means students can access help and advice 5 days a week. To support the ambition and criticality required in final year the final practice based module is worth 80 credits.

The Course is full-time so we expect students to work independently in studios and workshops in their independent study time

Start dates

  • September 2025

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

In Textile Art, Design and Fashion you will learn and develop work in a number of ways. The knowledge, understanding, ideas and skills needed to succeed in textiles and fashion are developed through a combination of practical workshop and studio experience supported by history, theory, and research. Lectures, seminars, workshops, and tutorials based around recommended reading, set projects and direct experience offer a variety of settings and styles in which you can develop ideas and gain the confidence to articulate your ideas to peers and tutors. A comprehensive range of demonstrations, workshops and master classes are core to delivery as are workshops and lectures supporting placement, live projects and self-directed study. Transferable graduate skills are developed through engagement with all elements of the course and are fundamental to undertaking coursework and to future success in textiles and fashion and the creative industries.

Assessment is based on 100% coursework which can take a range of formats including artworks and design collections, practical and contextual research, essays, statements, presentations, reports and digital portfolios.

Feedback is central to teaching, learning and assessment and offers essential guidance throughout the course and encourages you to reflect on progress and achievement and to consider suggestions for future direction.

Attendance and Independent Study

The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.

Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:

  • Attendance and Independent Study

    As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until close to the start date and may be subject to some change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days and periods of attendance will be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.

    Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10, 20, or 40 credit modules (more usually 20) and postgraduate courses typically 15 or 30 credit modules.

    The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Teaching and learning activities will be in-person and/or online depending on the nature of the course. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.

    Postgraduate Master’s courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.

    Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.

  • Assessment

    Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be a combination of examination and coursework but may also be only one of these methods. Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes.  You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessments. This feedback may be issued individually and/or issued to the group and you will be encouraged to act on this feedback for your own development.

    Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification, the assessment timetable and the assessment brief. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.

    Normally, a module will have 4 learning outcomes, and no more than 2 items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised. The module pass mark for undergraduate courses is 40%. The module pass mark for postgraduate courses is 50%.

  • Calculation of the Final Award

    The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6, (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).

    Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Master’s degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.

    All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study.

    In Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.

    Figures from the academic year 2022-2023.

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 60% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (19%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (22%) or Lecturers (57%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic and learning support staff (85%) are recognised as fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) by Advance HE - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise.  The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff.  This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

Figures from the academic year 2022-2023.

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Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.

Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.

Year one

Cultural Contexts

Year: 1

Cultural Contexts is a lecture, seminar and study-visit based module that introduces you to the broad cultural contexts of textiles and fashion, and to the essential study skills for undergraduate learning. It encourages reflective practice and supports you as you conduct independent research and explore ways to source, organise, analyse and present the thinking behind your developing practice.

Fundamental Skills 1

Year: 1

This module is the first practical module on the BA Hons Textile Art, Design and Fashion Course and introduces the fundamental skills in textiles and fashion. You will develop core skills by exploring approaches to drawing, idea development, colour theory, computer aided design, fabrics and their functions. Workshop practice is experienced in small groups and project work will be created in embroidery, print, fashion, knit and weave. Ideas can be developed for fashion garment, accessory, sample collections, interiors, costume or artwork.

Research & Writing 1: Methods & Approaches

Year: 1

This Research and Writing module is lecture and seminar based, it introduces you to key ideas, developments and debates in Textile art, Design and Fashion. You will learn of the broad artistic, cultural and economic contexts in which textiles and fashion have been made and used. Coursework supports you in establishing best practice in critical thinking, research and writing skills.

Fundamental Skills 2

Year: 1

This module builds on fundamental skills 1 in the Textile Art, Design and fashion Course. You will continue to develop core skills in visual investigation, ideas and development, colour theory, Computer Aided Design (photoshop and illustrator) fabrics and function. There is an introduction to employability in textiles and fashion. Workshop practice is experienced in small groups in embroidery, fashion, knit, print and weave. Ideas developed in the workshops could be for fashion garment, accessory, sample collections, costume, interiors or artwork.

Year two

Specialist Skills 1

Year: 2

Specialist Skills 1 enables you to build on the skills and knowledge gained during the Fundamental Skills modules in first year and is your first opportunity to establish an individual pathway though the course. You will choose two of the five specialisms offered by Textile Art, Design and Fashion and will develop ideas and concepts appropriate to your decision to be an artist or designer. You will be expected to take an exploratory and experimental approach to the development of your work throughout the semester.

This module encourages the development of the creative and critical thinking and supports decision-making and self-evaluation in skills based studio and workshop environment.

Professional Practice 1: Work Based Learning

Year: 2

Professional Practice will introduce you to the professional aspects of being an artist/designer in a rapidly changing society. It investigates the role of an independent creative artist/designer and also explores other fields where their attributes and skills are increasingly acknowledged, needed and valued as having wider application.

Research and Writing 2: Critical Frameworks

Year: 2

This module consolidates critical skills development and prepares you for the final year essay/ market report. It fosters independence and self-direction and peer-learning, using theoretical models and case studies so you develop an understanding of the ways in which ideas, issues and discourses are constructed and articulated in relation to textile art, design and fashion.

Specialist Skills 2

Year: 2

This module enables you to build upon the skills acquired at level 4 and the advanced skills gained in the first semester of level 5 and to firmly establish your own direction by choosing to specialise in one discipline, either embroidery, weave, knit, print or fashion and approach that discipline as either an artist or designer. The module emphasises the development of creative and critical thinking and supports decision-making and self-evaluation. It encourages you to link your ideas and concepts with appropriate material processes and take a challenging exploratory and experimental approach to textiles and fashion.

Year three


Year: 3

This module is optional

This is an optional placement year for students on the Ba Hons Textile Art, Design and Fashion Course who have completed Level 5 prior to the final year of study. The placement must be a minimum of 25 weeks duration and can be in a broad range of Art/Professional practice. A programme of work is agreed by the student, the Placement Tutor and the Placement Partner and usually takes place in Europe with respect to the relevant health and safety and disability regulations.(SENDO). The placement is designed to increase experience of workshop/studio/communal and technical practice, while broadening and enhancing the student's social, personal and professional development. Upon successful completion of the placement year the student is awarded, on graduation from the course, a Diploma in Professional Practice (DPP) or a Diploma in Professional Practice (DPPI) International if they complete the module outside the UK and Ireland.

International Academic Studies

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module provides an opportunity to undertake an extended period of study outside the UK and Republic of Ireland. Students will develop an enhanced understanding of the academic discipline whilst generating educational and cultural networks.

Year four

Research & Writing 3: The Essay/ Report

Year: 4

This stand-alone 20 cps research and writing module lasts for 6 weeks in the first semester of final year, and delivers two options of coursework (see below). This means that the 80 cps practice module (TDF505) starts in week 7 and runs until the end of the second semester. Students can then concentrate solely on both the research module and the subsequent practice module with no conflict between learning, research or time management in either. With TDF501 concluded, its results can then more profitably and efficiently be fed into, and contribute to, TDF505.

The Essay: This strand is text-based and facilitates a broader understanding of the context of textiles and fashion practice, both historical and contemporary, and the broader practices of art and design using theoretical debates, factual information and analytical methodologies in a written, academic outcome.

The Report: This strand requires students to make an strategic analysis of market levels and to identify and justify how their own studio practice will fit into a selected market. The analysis will take the form of a professionally-produced market research report, plus research folio.

The independent, student-led nature of this module, and its stand-alone time-frame, via sourcing and completion of an essay or report, will demonstrate intellectual confidence, independent research and communication skills, both verbal and/or written. Its 6 week schedule allows students to focus wholly on the discursive and analytical while permitting equal engagement with the TDF505 module, starting in week 7 until the final shows in May, without conflict or overlap.

Professional Practice 2: Graduate Skills

Year: 4

This Graduate Skills is the last 20 credit module in Textile Art, Design and Fashion. The module will focus on the key strategies that will help you prepare for graduate life, career development and employment. The module will provide you with a promotional portfolio and a 5-year strategic career plan, supported by valuable resources, tools, case studies and signposts to allow you to tailor the resource material to your specific career ambitions. It will adopt a professional and entrepreneurial approach to planning a career within a broad spectrum of the creative industries.

Major Project

Year: 4

Major Project is the final practice based module on Textile Art, Design and Fashion. Working ambitiously and critically as a self-directed artist or designer you will integrate practical, aesthetic and intellectual knowledge resulting in final artworks or collection and a professional portfolio. This 80 credit module spans two semesters and allows for ambition, risk- taking and continuity of practice preparing you for your future career.

Standard entry conditions

We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.

A level

Grades BCC

Applied General Qualifications

RQF Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma / OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma

Award profile of DMM

We will also accept smaller BTEC/OCR qualifications (i.e. Diploma or Extended Certificate / Introductory Diploma / Subsidiary Diploma) in combination with A Levels or other acceptable level 3 qualifications.

To find out if the qualification you are applying with is a qualification we accept for entry, please check our Qualification Checker - https://www.ulster.ac.uk/study/entrance-requirements/equivalence

We will also continue to accept QCF versions of these qualifications although grades asked for may differ. Check what grades you will be asked for by comparing the requirements above with the information under QCF in the Applied General and Tech Level Qualifications section of our Entry Requirements - https://www.ulster.ac.uk/study/entrance-requirements/undergraduate-entry-requirements

Irish Leaving Certificate

104 UCAS tariff points to include a minimum of five subjects (four of which must be at higher level) to include English at H6 if studied at Higher level or O4 if studied at Ordinary Level.

Irish Leaving Certificate UCAS Equivalency

Scottish Highers

Grades BCCCC

Scottish Advanced Highers

Grades CDD

International Baccalaureate

Overall profile is minimum 24 points (including 12 at higher level)

Access to Higher Education (HE)

Overall profile of 60% (120 credit Access Course) (NI Access Course)

Overall profile of 12 credits at Distinction, 30 credits at Merit and 3 credits at Pass (60 credit Access Course) (GB Access Course)


For full-time study, you must satisfy the General Entrance Requirements for admission to a first degree course and hold a GCSE pass at Grade C/4 or above in English Language.

Level 2 Certificate in Essential Skills - Communication will be accepted as equivalent to GCSE English.

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for international applicants

The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.

Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Additional Entry Requirements

Applicants to this course will be required to submit a portfolio.

Acceptable alternative qualifications include:

Pass HND with overall Merit to include 30 distinctions in level 5 credits/units may be specified.

Pass HNC with overall Distinction to include 60 distinctions in level 4 credits/units may be specified.

You may also meet the course entry requirements with combinations of different qualifications to the same standard as recognised by the University (provided subject requirements as noted above are met).

Exemptions and transferability

Only applications with appropriate prior experience and qualifications and who can demonstrate an appropriate level of art and design practice may opt for entry into Year 2 and in exceptional circumstances to Year 3.

Careers & opportunities

Graduate employers

Graduates from this course are now working for:

  • Decora Blind Systems Ltd
  • Primark UK (Penneys Ireland)
  • Port West Workwear
  • Douglas & Graham Ltd.
  • Dunnes Stores Design Department
  • Eire Designs

Job roles

With this degree you could become:

  • Costume Designer
  • Community Arts Facilitator
  • Fashion Designer
  • Lecturer in Further and Higher Education
  • Textile Designer
  • Textile Artist
  • Art Teacher

Career options

Graduates will be equipped to pursue a range of career paths within an increasingly diverse field as self-employed and freelance textile artists, designers, and makers of craft objects. For those focusing on business and industry they will work as designers, buyers, product developers and design marketing executives. For those in the public and private sectors they will find careers as arts officers, educators, teachers, workshop coordinators, community artists and curators. Others will choose to become freelance textile artists, designers and makers selling their work through art markets and online. Others will undertake private and public commissions, residencies and will adopt a portfolio approach to building a career. The film and television industry offers exciting opportunities for costume designers, printers, embroiderers and dyers as well as breakdown artists and many of our graduates have forged successful careers in this booming industry

Graduates from this course have gained experience and employment with a wide range of organisations, such as;Bedeck, Dunnes Stores, H&M, Marks & Spencer, Douglas and Grahame, Ulster Carpets, R A Irwins, Decora Blind Systems Ltd, Inis Meáin Knitting Co., Lululemon, Brown Thomas, JW Anderson, Alexander McQueen, House of Holland, Lizzie Agnew, Una Rodden, Studio Souk, Primark, Magee, Hand & Lock, Insignia, Avoca, HBO, BBC, Universal, Fire and Blood Productions, Opera House, Lyric Theatre, Donegal Yarns, Mourne Textiles, PortWest, Cooneen and Ulster Carpets, Elevation Design, NI Screen.

Work placement / study abroad

As part of your academic studies, you may opt to undertake a period of placement where you will be studying or broadening your experience in either a professional/industrial situation or undertaking academic studies in another institution. A successful placement year in industry or study abroad results in the following awards:

Diploma in Professional Practice (DPP)

Diploma in Professional Practice International (DPPI)

Diploma in International Academic Studies (DIAS)


Start dates

  • September 2025

Fees and funding

Scholarships, awards and prizes

  • International Undergraduate Scholarship


  • Open to all new international (non-EU) entrants on the first year of a full-time undergraduate course delivered on one of our Northern Ireland campuses, commencing September 2018.


£2,000 scholarship applied as discount to your annual tuition fee.

  • Information on other scholarships available to international students


  • Other awards and prizes:


Information provided is for guidance only as scholarship details are subject to change - please refer to the source website for up-to-date and accurate information.

Additional mandatory costs

Students purchase materials for their own coursework.

Consumable workshop contribution of up to £100 is optional and contributes to materials used by students.

Local field trips to museums, galleries and exhibitions may incur additional costs.

It is important to remember that costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges) and normal living will need to be covered in addition to tuition fees.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses (in addition to tuition fees) we make every effort to highlight them above. We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals, as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free Wi-Fi are also available on each of the campuses.

There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as a part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs, as well as tuition fees.

See the tuition fees on our student guide for most up to date costs.


We’d love to hear from you!

We know that choosing to study at university is a big decision, and you may not always be able to find the information you need online.

Please contact Ulster University with any queries or questions you might have about:

  • Course specific information
  • Fees and Finance
  • Admissions

For any queries regarding getting help with your application, please select Admissions in the drop down below.

For queries related to course content, including modules and placements, please select Course specific information.

We look forward to hearing from you.

For more information visit


  1. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the programmes and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility and the University may make variations to the contents or methods of delivery of courses, discontinue, merge or combine courses and introduce new courses if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key staff, changes in legislation or government policy including changes, if any, resulting from the UK departing the European Union, withdrawal or reduction of funding or other circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control.
  1. If the University discontinues any courses, it will use its best endeavours to provide a suitable alternative course. In addition, courses may change during the course of study and in such circumstances the University will normally undertake a consultation process prior to any such changes being introduced and seek to ensure that no student is unreasonably prejudiced as a consequence of any such change.
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