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About the course

Do you want to get into the business of fashion? Hoping to build sought after supply-chain management, visual merchandising and business management skills? This challenging course will help you to acquire the perfect blend of creative and strategic thinking that employers are looking for, preparing you for a rewarding career in the booming fashion industry.

This exciting course encourages creative flair, an eye for trends, business acumen and management skills. Students study a diverse range of subjects and gain a deeper understanding of buying cycles, sales performance, product development, garment sourcing, manufacturing and brand development.

The course places a strong emphasis on gaining practical work experience. Past students have had the opportunity to set up their own business at our stunning student-run store, Re:So, which sells a unique mix of fashion, accessories, publications, furniture and art. The store’s upper floor ‘learning zone’ has previously hosted guest speakers from the fashion industry, workshops, photo-shoots and exhibitions – all with an emphasis on developing student retail, enterprise and employability skills.

To aid their studies, students have free access to our media academy. This area contains photography studios, digital video cameras, media equipment and Mac suites with the latest Adobe Creative Suite software. Students also have access to digital reprographics rooms for design work.

Study abroad Foundation year available Professional memberships Built in work experience placement Specialist facilities Further studies

Students learn about buying cycles, sales performance, product development, garment sourcing, manufacturing, and brand development.

What does this course lead to?

As a graduate of this course you will be well placed to pursue a career in a wide variety of head office roles, helping to shape the international fashion design and retail industries. Established career paths offer the potential for travel and great opportunities for progression, while new areas of multi-channel retail and the expansion of luxury and international markets ensure that employment prospects are broad and exciting.

Who is this course for?

Solent’s fashion buying and merchandising degree is perfectly suited to students who want to build a working understanding of buying cycles, sales performance, product development, garment sourcing, manufacturing, and brand development.

Facts and figures

UCAS codes icon

UCAS codes

Full Time

  • 3 Years Standard Entry W236
Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The 2018/19 fees are not yet available. For guidance, the 2017/18 fees were:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £11,000 per year

Whilst these inflationary fee increases in tuition fees and student support loans have been announced by the Minister, they are still subject to formal parliamentary approval.

Other costs

While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact student.funding@solent.ac.uk.

The 2018/19 other costs are not yet available. For guidance the 2017/18 costs were:

Year one:
Optional study trips: £100 
Optional International trips: £200 - £800

Year two:
Optional study trips: £100 
Optional International trips: £200 - £800

Year three:
Optional study trips: £100 
Optional International trips: £200 - £800
Major project: £100

Bursaries and scholarships

Southampton Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.


Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

96 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma at MMM or BTEC Diploma at DD or equivalent.
  • Direct entry into the second or third years may be considered for this course.
  • Applicants over the age of 21 may be considered based on relevant experience, without having the required tariff points.
  • Alternative entry to this course is available through the Design Foundation Year.
We welcome applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds. Applicants who are not in possession of the minimum entry requirements but are able to demonstrate aptitude, enthusiasm and motivation will be considered on an individual basis and may be admitted subject to satisfactory interview and/or portfolio. Please contact us for further details.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 19 in each individual component-TOEFL is only valid for EU students
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.


95%

of students feel the course has provided opportunities to bring information and ideas together

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team:

ask@solent.ac.uk 023 8201 3039

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website: www.ucas.com.

Your application should reach UCAS by January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until June. The UCAS Code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

Core units
  • Introduction to Fashion Buying
  • Supply Chain and Project Management
  • Multi-Channel Marketing
  • Visual Merchandising for Fashion
  • Retail Environment
  • Introduction to IT Skills

Year two

Core units
  • Buying and Merchandising
  • Product Development
  • International Fashion Communications
  • Fashion Buying and the Law

Options

  • Fashion Merchandise Planning
  • Ethical Issues
  • Freelancing at Solent Creatives
  • Model Your Business
  • Curriculum Plus

Please note: Not all optional units are guaranteed to run each year.

Year three

Core units
  • Major Project
  • Work-Based Learning for Fashion and the Creative Industries
  • International Strategic Business Practice

Options

  • Innovation and Technology
  • Corporate Social Responsibility

Please note: Not all optional units are guaranteed to run each year.

Support

Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Key figures

92%

Assessment by coursework

8%

Practical exams

Students' work

Meet the course team

Emma Pritchard academic profile Emma Pritchard Senior Lecturer View profile
Janey McCulley academic profile Janey McCulley Lecturer View profile
Lesley Taylor academic profile Lesley Taylor Associate Lecturer View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.

Facilities

All fashion students use the photography studios, IT suites, cameras, media equipment, and specialist rooms within Solent’s media academy. You’ll also have access to an extensive range of fashion, forecasting, marketing, retail and media publications within the library, as well as a range of merchandising equipment within the fashion department and our Re:So store.

The curriculum is built around practical insights into the fashion industry through live projects, site visits, prestigious guest speakers and work placements. Past students have also organised and managed fashion conferences and events.

Your future

Suitable roles for graduates include:

  • Fashion buyer
  • Merchandiser
  • Allocator
  • Fashion forecaster
  • Fashion brand manager
  • Visual merchandiser 
  • Product development manager
  • Retail manager
  • Product line manager. 

97%

of students go on to work and/or study

70%

of students are in a professional or managerial job
  • I wouldn’t be in this job if it wasn’t for Southampton Solent University. It taught me everything I needed to know to get a job in the industry. In my interview I felt really confident. The undergraduate degree gave me a really thorough understanding of fashion history, behaviour and culture, and of how fashion influences the economy and vice versa.

    Chloe Adams, graduate now merchandise associate at Arcadia

  • Finding good graduates in the fashion buying and merchandising areas is incredibly difficult. We get lots of applications but very few have the specialist knowledge that gives them the head start that they need. This course addresses this issue.

    Jean Pierre Gadson, HR, George at ASDA

  • My lecturers have great industry experience which helps with learning our course content. They are able to guide us with great industry contacts which will really help in future.

    Olivia Leigh

  • Teaching is always pitch-perfect in the sessions and the inclusion of guest associate lecturer sessions throughout the course modules gave a refreshing and interesting contrast in the course timetable. Guest lecturers complement the course lecturers very well indeed and offer a valuable insight into various industries and professions via their own industry experience.

    Robert Salt, graduate now area merchandiser at F&F

Industry links

We work closely with fashion industry professionals, regularly inviting guest speakers to discuss their experiences of working in the fashion industry and impart their knowledge; past speakers have included Caryn Franklyn and representatives from WGSN, Marks & Spencer, Next, All Saints, Fat Face, Michael Kors, and Hobbs. The school of fashion has also run projects with Fat Face, Puma, TM Lewin, Ted Baker, Top Shop, MRA Architects and IBM Innovation Centre.

Placements

In year three you’ll work towards the Fashion Industry Work-Based Learning unit, incorporating work experience directly into your course.

You’ll also be encouraged to seek work experience outside of teaching time, and the course team will often provide support and contacts within the industry to help you find a placement.

Recent students in the School of Art, Design and Fashion have conducted placements at Micheal Kors, Hugo Boss New York, Harvey Nichols, Arcadia Group, Peter Pilotto, London Fashion Week, Anya Hindmarch, Calvin Klein, Puma and Ted Baker.

Further study

Enhance your career prospects by continuing your study at Solent.

Visit us

Our next open day is Saturday 30 September 2017

Find out more