Course specification and structure
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UDFAACJE - BA Fashion Accessories and Jewellery

Course Specification

Validation status Validated
Highest award Bachelor of Arts Level Honours
Possible interim awards Bachelor of Arts, Diploma of Higher Education, Certificate of Higher Education, Bachelor of Arts
Total credits for course 360
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School The Sir John Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design (The Cass)
Subject Area Design
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 3 YEARS 7 YEARS
Part-time Day 4 YEARS 7 YEARS
Course leader Marianne Forrest

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning

The BA (Hons) Fashion Accessories and Jewellery course introduces the student to the inspiring world of fashion accessories and jewellery in preparation for a career in the industry. The course equips students for employment or self employment in the competitive world of fashion and related products. The course offers students a broad based and contemporary approach to industry practice with atelier-style studio practice across the second and third years. Teaching will take place in studios and workshops across a range of tech-nical and practical projects.
The course enables students to understand self –reflective practice with experiential learning techniques and approaches. Students develop an understanding of the critical and intellectual debates centring around the fashion and fashion accessories industries enabling an increasingly intelligent approach to the communication of their particular skills alongside the development of their personal voice.
The studio structure allows students to engage critically with ideas and objects for the fashion industry and the opportunities it offers. Students graduate with a range of skills enabling a range of careers in design and make such as product developer, self-employed designer/maker, in house fashion stylist, technologist or curator. In a wider context students can follow careers in journalism, promotion, education, curating, retail or digital media. The course will also prepare students for application to a postgraduate course, where appropriate.
Projects will involve a range of subject matters that are responsive to current design trends and intensive re-quirements of external partners. Students graduate with an understanding of industry and the need for flexibil-ity in understanding the needs of the market place.

Students experience a range of live projects with excellent external clients that will help to build a portfolio and CV in preparation for creative practice. Students are encouraged to enter competitions and events such as International Talent Support and London Fashion Week as part of the project briefs given.

The course will encourage students to think and make experimentally through direct experience of practical and creative working processes. There is a requirement to understand and interpret ideas through independ-ent thought encouraging a personal design philosophy utilising informed research alongside practice.

Learning will be supported with external visits to high end fashion houses and manufacturing companies to broaden understanding of the context of the work undertaken. The wealth of current practitioners amongst the teaching staff is supported by our intensive programme of visiting speakers who enrich the university atmos-phere and encourage depth of debate.

With opportunities for critique and cross disciplinary approaches to practice students will find opportunities to connect with a range of disciplines from fashion, textiles, furniture and film to architecture and fine art.
During the course a fully documented work placement is central to personal professional development for every student.

On graduation students can expect to have been able to prepare for a career in the broader fashion industries with a full understanding of personal depth of thought, understanding and expression. A truly tailored career path in a broad and creative industry hungry for new talent.

Course aims

The aims of this course are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. The course aims to:

  1. Deliver a high quality education in fashion accessories and jewellery that will ensure graduates are knowl-edgeable, creative, technically able and work-ready
  2. Foster critical understanding of and creative approaches to the cultural, technological and economic factors surrounding the professional practice of fashion accessories and jewellery for luxury, ready-to-wear and/or high street
  3. Foster self-reliance and openness to professional development, ensuring individual practice that is accu-rately positioned in relation to current economic, ethical, cultural, environmental, material and global needs
  4. Develop confident entrepreneurial, promotional and presentational skills, encouraging multidisciplinary ap-proaches and critical thought
  5. Develop curiosity, independent enquiry and capacity to reason, critique and reflect upon practice through an integrated approach to practice and theory, research and analysis
  6. Through working intimately with materials and making/ production, enable skills for professional practice including subject knowledge, efficiency, confidence and autonomy relevant to individual interests, creative ambitions and sector conditions.

The course engages with external clients and competitions both London based, national and international through briefs and as extracurricular activities including exhibitions and events.

The teaching team includes well connected industry specialists in fashion, textiles, accessories, jewellery and product designers in a range of fields with expertise that extends from broad ranging creative skills to fine detailing and intelligent craft.
Teaching methods include: lectures, seminars, tutorials, live briefings, group formal critiques, workshops and studio practice.

Each year of study comprises of four year-long (30 weeks, 30 credit) modules in the areas of concept and realisation, subject-specific industry practice and cultural and contextual studies (including professional prac-tice).

Lectures provide a critically informed overview of a topic, to conceptualise and contextualise the subject and illustrate applied approaches. Lecture series will be from industry experts and based upon contemporary in-dustry subject matter.

Workshops and practical teaching takes a variety of forms. The objective is to apply knowledge and/or ac-quire technical competence, to think critically and creatively, to master technique and to develop the capacity to work independently and in teams. Opportunities will be available to students to develop skills specifically relevant to their project work, a specific brief, or a discipline collaborative project.

Studio practice enhances lectures, seminars, study visits, critiques, workshop activities, group and individual tutorials. Both projects and theoretical work offer opportunities for developing professional competency in presentation (including visual, spoken and text-based modes), using digital technologies, blogs, videos, pho-tography and websites.

Project briefs develop from year to year in accordance with contemporary practice, furthering research inter-ests and project opportunities in context of the School and Faculty ethos. Disciplinary skills are embedded at the beginning of the course, and are built upon each academic year. The body of work accumulated at Level 6 is significant, making up an academic portfolio that demonstrates the full range of attributes that are required for career development in creative practice and/ or for entry to MA level Course. Shared projects across courses &/or years enables opportunities for peer-to-peer learning to be maximised.

Critical and Contextual Studies run in parallel to the design and subject-specific industry practice modules. These modules focus upon transferable graduate skills in the field of academic scholarship and writing as well as aspects of professional practice. As part of their professional profile, students need to be able to retrieve, analyse, interpret, articulate and structure information and knowledge for different purposes and audiences. These modules frame key skills of research within the specific context of design history and theory, taking into account the practice requirements of the industry, its professional, legal, ethical and institutional contexts. Intensive blocks of learning in seminar and lecture presentations, alongside site visits, image analysis, case studies, and workshops, aid acquisition of skills in presentation, visual and textual analysis and representation.

The course’s use of virtual learning supports students on day-to-day and project work in progress, enhancing the studio environment through a blended learning approach. Blended learning encourages students to form learning communities, whilst providing a personal reflective space, offering a knowledge portal that supports research-banks and studio sessions, exercises and lecture notes.

Course learning outcomes

On completion of this course, students will be able to:

Knowledge and Understanding

1. Describe, understand and explore the intellectual and practical process of creative practice in fashion accessories and jewellery and the broader academic debates in the fashion design industry

2. Recognise how developments or constraints in manufacturing processes and technologies influence each other and apply this knowledge to practice

3. Apply self-critical, investigative and evaluative practice, understand the contemporary and historical framework associated with a broad ranging approach to accessories while developing an individual per-spective and approach

Cognitive Intellectual Skills

4. Observe, investigate and synthesise complex visual and material effects towards the production of creative material solutions

5. Utilise disciplinary experimentation to challenge consumer perception of contemporary accessory de-sign and related industries, bringing new ideas to market reception

6. Take responsibility for the content and signature of individual creative practice within professional and commercial contexts, demonstrating ethical sensitivity and a reflexive, innovative personal approach as a professional designer

Transferable Skills

7. Competently apply individual critical, practical and creative strengths to self-promotion in order to pro-fessionally articulate practice intent visually, textually and orally

8. Respond to a defined industry or competitive brief and its constraints (including technological and aesthetic considerations), utilising creative opportunities towards professional project realisation

9. Work professionally and effectively with others through collaboration and negotiation, in a variety of roles, as sole practitioner and within a multi-disciplinary team

Subject-Specific Practical Skills

10. Employ the necessary skills to select appropriate materials and processes suitable for the realisation of creative intent, taking into account specific aesthetic and material characteristics through a range of processes appropriate and in consideration of specified design outcomes.

11. Realise specialist applications for resolved fashion accessory and jewellery collections, from construction, detailing and communication appropriate to functionality.

12. Apply knowledge of the fashion accessories and jewellery industry and the commercial contexts to effective career planning, strategically placing your work within the clearly defined markets, price-point and product categories defined in the industry.

Principle QAA benchmark statements

Subject Benchmark Statement; Art & Design

Assessment strategy

An appropriate range of formative and summative assessment methods is used, including peer appraisal and reflective practice, studio based work and personal projects, presentations, seminars and portfolio reviews.

Formative assessment and feedback are provided in relation to each component of work in progress. Summative assessment corresponding to published criteria is given within each module on completion of coursework requirements.

Students are guaranteed a consistent approach to assessment and feedback across the years and Facul-ty to ensure they have a secure grasp of their progress. These approaches to assessment and feedback support students’ understanding of their learning by providing timely developmental feedback that pro-motes a deeper learning approach to their studies. Assessment methods such as reports, essays, cri-tiques, presentations, digital and studio portfolio reviews, allow differing learning styles, whilst encouraging reflective and reflexive approaches. Each assessment (formative and summative) seeks to build students’ confidence as independent learners, providing pertinent advice for all aspects of learning.

The course team provides ongoing opportunities for scheduled tutorial ‘drop in’ sessions and the course’s virtual learning environment offers students opportunities to discuss (with tutors and peers) their assessment strategies. Further support is available via personal academic tutors, Library Services, and University Student Services.

Organised work experience, work based learning, sandwich year or year abroad

The understanding of the needs of industry and an introduction to work based learning is embedded from early beginnings in Level 4 with oral presentations to peers and staff. Competitive projects reflect current professional practice culminating in critiques and presentations at the faculty wide Celebration Week events. Students at this level take part in study trips and visits to manufacturers and designers in order to increase awareness of career possibilities from the outset.

Exhibitions and live projects with professional standard outcomes build through the three years leading to Celebration Week presentations. Students receive verbal evaluation and feedback with presentation techniques taught from the first year, both verbal and visual.

Building on the experiences at Level 4 the Level 5 & 6 Studio projects include live projects with embedded presentations for external critique and presentations.Students are asked to apply for these projects in a professionally focused simulation of real work experience. All students are asked to utilise their knowledge and skill in obtaining work placements and job opportunities researched and undertaken during level 5 or level 6.

Students undertake CV writing, statements and cover letters and explore online media, web and social networks through the professional practice modules. Visits to practitioners and brands are enhanced by industry lectures and seminars, students are asked to critically reflect on all of these various experiences through their reflective journals and sketchbooks.

Live projects and external presentations encourage and necessitate negotiation and team working in a range of differing scenarios. Students learn to balance demands and negotiate solutions while understanding deadlines and practicing modes of delivery and presentation.

Work-related learning is an integrated and mandatory part of the course, with at least 70 hours working on live projects for real organisations delivered through placement, live briefs and real entrepreneurial activities built into the course. The level six module ‘Exhibition Practice’ is designated as the placement or work-related learning module. Students will experience a competitive recruitment process or pitching for opportunities, and they will be required to reflect on their experience of the project and undertake forward career action planning.

Students wishing to teach as part of their career future will be offered the opportunity for work experience in the USA at level 5 with summer long opportunities in New York State and across the west coast

Course specific regulations

ACADEMIC PROGRESSION: As a condition of progressing from level 4 to 5 and level 5 to 6, students are re-quired to have gained 120 credits per level, that is, by achieving pass marks (40%) in all four modules in the preceding level of study.

Level 6: In order to achieve an honours degree award on this course, students must have completed and passed each Level 6 module at 40% or above.

Part-time study is defined as 60 credits per year. Consequently, in part-time mode, the duration of study for a 360-credit degree will be 6 years. The pattern of study in CASS degrees shall be as follows:

Year 1: Workshop Practice, 3D Design Principles
Year 2: Critical and Contextual Studies 1(3D), 3D Visual Research and Communication
Year 3: 3D Design, Design Resolution
Year 4: Critical and Contextual Studies 2(3D), Making Matters
Year 5: 3D Project Design and Development, Major Project Realisation: Fashion Accessories and Jewellery
Tear 6: Critical and Contextual Studies 3: Dissertation(3D), Exhibition Practice

Modules required for interim awards


Arrangements for promoting reflective learning and personal development

Reflective learning is a embedded in the studio practice modules through Level 5 study and within the final professional modules at level 6. Students are required to reflect and critique their work and that of others throughout the programme. The skills acquired endorse the course remit of developing students with critical and intellectual skills needed for graduate employability and understanding of their personal context within the industry culture.

Students develop work plans and personal development plans in order to organise their working process and articulate their method and practice argument with a view to communication and presentation of ideas and outcomes.

With peer critique alongside visiting critics each student is guided and helped along a path of self analysis and discovery that culminates in a clear and well developed ability to express their particular ethos and communicate their underlying working process and practice.

Students keep reflective diaries or blogs and keep annotated sketchbooks alongside their practical work. Critical review is central to teaching methods with students regularly discussion their approaches, re-search and final outcomes in a rich and constructive approach to learning through thinking.

Arrangements on the course for careers education, information and guidance

In addition to access to the University’s careers service, students will also be involved in employability and career preparation enhancement activities such as Making a Living week and the University Accelerator Unit’s initiatives. Students are able to take part in a wide range of activities that provide advice and guidance in rewarding practical and live projects that encompass groups of students from all disciplines. These are all intended as a culture of career guidance that enriches the experience of careers advice and enables student to fully integrate the advice into their study programme.

Other external links providing expertise and experience

All students are expected to participate in a range of externally facing briefs with live clients, alongside this invaluable opportunity for professional contextualisation of their work students experience the pressures and deadlines essential for professional understanding and achievement after graduation. Presentations take place both on university premises but also externally in a range of venues from exhibition halls and galleries to company boardrooms.

Career opportunities

Graduates of this creative courses leave with the skills and practical experience in a wide range of careers in design including product development, self-employed designer/maker, fashion stylist, technologist or curator.

Our graduates are well known in the industry with names such as Zoe Robertson, Imogen Bellfield, Mark Bloomfield (Electrobloom) and Jo McAllister amongst our alumni. Alex O’Neil Skjerdal, one of our recent graduate has been working with acclaimed designer Jasper Conran on some jewellery prices and is currently working the the Horniman Museum on a range of jewellery.

Outside the industry, graduates can also follow careers in journalism, promotion, education, retail or digital media.

There is also the option of further study at postgraduate level.

Entry requirements

In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:

  • a minimum of grades BBC in three A levels in relevant art and design, art history or design and technology subjects (or a minimum of 112 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification in relevant art and design subjects) plus a portfolio review
  • English Language GCSE at grade C (grade 4 from 2017) or above (or equivalent)

We encourage applications from international/EU students with equivalent qualifications and also accept mature students with diverse backgrounds and experiences. Applicants living outside the UK will be required to submit a portfolio of work via email.

If you do not have traditional qualifications or cannot meet the entry requirements for this undergraduate degree, you may still be able to gain entry by completing the Fashion and Textiles Extended Degree (with Foundation Year) BA (Hons).

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2016/17 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 09 Aug 2016 Last validation date 09 Aug 2016  
JACS codes W230 (Clothing/Fashion Design): 100%
Route code FAACJE

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 04 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
CP4011 Critical & Contextual Studies 1 (3D) Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR TUE AM
DN4005 Workshop Practice Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR MON AM
DN4006 3D Design Principles Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR MON AM
DN4007 3D Visual Research and Communication Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR MON AM

Stage 2 Level 05 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
CP5011 Critical & Contextual Studies 2 (3D) Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR THU AM
DN5006 Design Resolution Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR TUE PM
DN5007 Making Matters Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR THU PM
DN5011 3D Design Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR TUE PM

Stage 3 Level 06 August start Not currently offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
CP6011 Critical & Contextual Studies 3: Dissertation (3D) Core 30        
DN6003 Exhibition Practice Core 30        
DN6013 3D Project Design & Development Core 30        
DN6021 Major Project Realisation: Fashion Accessories ... Core 30