Course specification and structure
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UDTXTIFY - BA (Hons) Textiles (including foundation year)

Course Specification

Validation status Validated
Highest award Bachelor of Arts Level Honours
Possible interim awards
Total credits for course 480
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School School of Art, Architecture and Design
Subject Area Design
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 4 YEARS 8 YEARS
Part-time 6 YEARS 8 YEARS
Course leader  

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning and towards blended learning/e-learning

The learning and teaching strategies within BA (Hons) Textiles, seek to inspire and instruct in appropriate measure.
The course equips its students with specialist skills, grounded in industry practice and process with clear pathway choices towards fashion, interior design or a more socially engaged direction. A contemporary teaching and learning environment encourages critical engagement with the character and constraints of commercial and cultural contexts of textile design and making. The teaching supports preparation for future careers in a wide range of professional occupations within textiles: as a designer and/or maker, educator, artist, technologist within industry or on a self-employed basis, community worker, curator, design journalist, or for postgraduate studies.

Consideration has been given to the following: the Subject Benchmark Statement (Art and Design 2017), the HE Qualification Framework, the University’s Strategic Plan and Student Charter, the University’s Undergraduate Regulations, the views and feedback of students, external examiners and employers/ clients, developments within the subject area, and the changing needs of the cultural/ commercial sectors and professions. Due consideration has also been given to inclusivity in course and assessment design, and specifically to the transition from the Level 3 year to the Level 4 – 6 BA programme.

Embedded in the Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design, the course draws on the strengths of teaching staff from across the School and the wide circle of academic and cultural contacts and collaborators attached to the School and University.

The course seeks to provide and foster:

• experimentation and learning through direct experience in studio-based working;
• a culture of independent thought, encouraging individual choice and the production of critically informed design practice;
• projects that make use of diverse sites and origins for cultural exchange and exploration;
• disciplinary engagement across the School, providing opportunities for collaborative project work during study;
• learning through direct experience, connecting academic and creative studies;
• student choice in subject and style of learning;
• a culture of independent and critical thought, encouraging the challenging of received ideas and practice;
• employability attributes, through live projects engaging with external partners, institutions and companies that create a realistic environment of professional expectations for students, preparing students for graduate-level employment;
• engagement across the School and University, providing opportunities for collaborative project work during study;
• individualised learning and study support opportunities, that cater for different learning styles;
• awareness of the duty of all to understand the impact of their decisions and actions as textile designers and to strive to act responsibly.

The foundation year provides a programme of study in widely applicable and design-specific skills, knowledge and contextual awareness that prepares students for level 4 study, including expectations of assessment and preparation for assessment in higher education. The foundation year offers a safe and managed transition from the directed learning of secondary education and regular contact with the staff and students of the level 4-6 cohort through workshops, critiques, exhibitions and cluster and School-wide events.

Each year of study in levels 4 – 6 comprises of four year-long modules in the areas of concept and realisation, subject-specific industry practice and cultural and contextual studies (including professional practice). Typically, students devise and develop practical projects under guidance, building up a reserve of sector-specific skills, testing and realising new ideas and design potential, and introducing collaborative work with peers. This approach ensures that the student is guided through the acquisition of knowledge and understanding, as the course progresses through the years. Throughout the preparatory foundation year, students are prepared with the skills and knowledge in research and development for design, a range of realisation techniques and contextual awareness to enable a secure and confident transition to level 4. The foundation year is designed as three stages.

Stage 1 introduces and establishes a common ground of new experiences, values and practical skills. It lays the foundation for the course and serves as a base from which more independent work can be developed. Classes, workshops, inductions and tasks are relatively short and focus on substantial production and skills acquisition.

Stage 2 is more open-ended, with a series of longer projects and more choice and decision making for the student who is encouraged to apply, reinforce and develop effective practices from Stage 1 to establish a personal perspective, responsibility for time-management, self-knowledge and a sense of direction for their own creative practice. Direct experience of possible choices for subject-area of study ahead are through Cass subject-area tutors involvement in Stage 2 studio projects generally and from specific subject-area studio projects run by Cass undergraduate subject-area tutors that include use of subject area studios, workshops, technical facilities and expertise. Students experience what is shared across creative practices as well as what is specific to a subject-area’s culture.

Stage 3 helps the student undertake a sustained, focussed and resolved study with a longer, final project that is perceived as ‘under their control’. The emphasis is on increasing/focussing their subject-area knowledge - testing their commitment, and the production and organisation of coherent and resolved work - as they devise the brief, manage the process and outcome, and are participants in the process of evaluating their work.

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, photography and websites. Through a rich mix of teaching styles and learning contexts, the course seeks to foster in its students confidence as autonomous learners, promoting imagination and effectiveness of design practitioners in the making.

Teaching methods include: lectures, seminars, tutorials, external visits, live briefings and feedback from partners, group critiques, workshops and opportunities for studio practice. Teaching and learning adopts a student-centered approach that identifies individual learning styles and accommodates them.

Lectures provide and encourage a critically informed view of a topic, contextualising the subject and illustrating applied approaches. Lectures provide students with a managed introduction to a theme, enabling them to continue with suggested or directed self-study.

Seminars enable students to debate and explore subjects, questions and assignments with peers and tutors, encouraging an open and collaborative approach to shared learning.

Tutorials support individual learning, allowing for individual approaches to study, and catering for individual interests. Tutorials can be diagnostic or can support specific assignment or project-related questions, and support differing student paths to achievement of learning outcomes.

External visits offer opportunities for vital direct experience with objects and sites of study, and to communicate with and learn from experts and specialists attached to partner institutions and bodies.

Live briefings and feedback are an important aspect of work-based learning, exposing students to experience of professional ways of working, of professional expectations of standards, and of the most current professional practice.

Critiques allow students to benefit from feedback on their own and others’ work, to contribute to that feedback, and are a valuable part of the peer-to-peer learning that is a core expectation and reason for University study.

Workshops offer students opportunities to engage in creative practice. Opportunities will be available to students to undertake workshop and studio practice relevant to their assignments or collaborative projects. The objective is to apply knowledge and/or acquire technical competence, to think critically and creatively, to master technique and develop the capacity to work independently and within teams.

Blended learning utilises the University’s VLE platform to support and reinforce reflective learning, to monitor progress through assignments, to foster peer-to-peer communication and collaborative research activity ,and to facilitate tutorial support for students and flexible approaches to learning

Project briefs develop from year to year in accordance with contemporary practice and opportunities for engagement with external partners that arise. Disciplinary research skills are embedded at the beginning of the course, and are built upon each academic year to ensure the maximum exploitation of the learning opportunities that projects and assignments offer. Students will graduate with a portfolio of work that will include written work and outcomes that exhibit analyses through the creation, manipulation, examination or curation of artefacts.


Course aims

In studying Textiles at The Cass students will be able to learn all they need in order to become a fully rounded Textile Designer or practitioner. The course aims to provide students with a broad based education which enables a personal definition of the strategic progress towards employment or self sufficiency as a practitioner.

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 textilesthat will ensure graduates are knowledgeable, creative, technically able and work-ready (LO4, LO5, LO7, LO9, LO10, LO11);
2. foster critical understanding of the professional practice of textiles for the fashion, interior, cross disciplinary ,and art textile markets (LO1,LO2,LO3, LO6, LO10);
3. develop individual creative approaches to the cultural, technological and economic factors surrounding textile practice (LO1, LO3);
4. foster self-reliance and openness to professional development (LO5, LO6, LO7, LO9);
5. ensure an individual practice that is positioned in relation to economic, ethical, cultural, environmental, material, global needs (LO5, LO6, LO8);
6. develop confident presentational skills, encouraging multidisciplinary approaches and critical thought (LO4, LO7);
7. Create practitioners with entrepreneurial, promotional and forward looking applications of their practice (LO2, LO5, LO8);
8. develop curiosity, independent enquiry and capacity to reason, critique and reflect upon personal creative practice (LO3, LO6).
9. through an integrated approach to practice and theory, research and analysis develop an understanding of the context for independent practice (LO1,LO4 , LO8, LO10, LO12);
10. instil a thorough knowledge of materials, processes and making skills, in order to enable entry into the professional environment of choice (LO2, LO5, LO6, LO10, LO11);
11. enable skills for professional practice (subject knowledge, collaborative team work, confidence and autonomy) relevant to individual interests and creative ambitions (LO1, LO7,LO9, LO11, LO12);
12. deliver individuals who are able to inspire, challenge and create work that places them at the forefront of their chosen professional directions (LO2,LO3 , LO5, LO6, LO8, LO12).

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 creativity within textiles and broader academic debates in related fields (CA2, CA3, CA9, CA11);
2 recognise how textile design manufacturing/technologies operate and apply market knowledge of current and future trends, developments, trends and constraints to practice (CA2, CA7, CA10, CA12);
3 apply self-critical, investigative and evaluative practice, understand the contemporary and historical framework associated with textiles to enable insight whilst developing an individual perspective and approach (CA2, CA3, CA8);

Cognitive Intellectual Skills
4 observe, investigate and synthesise complex visual and material effects towards the production of creative material solutions (CA1, CA6, CA9);
5 utilise disciplinary experimentation to challenge consumer perception of textiles and related fashion industries, bringing new ideas to market reception (CA1, CA4, CA5, CA7, CA10, CA12);
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 textile practitioner (CA2, CA4, CA5, CA8, CA10, CA12);

Transferable Skills
7 competently apply individual critical, practical and creative strengths to self-promotion in order to professionally articulate design intent visually, textually and orally (CA1, CA4, CA6, CA11);
8 respond to a defined market brief and constraints (including technological and economic conditions), utilising creative opportunities towards professional project realization (CA5, CA7, CA9, CA12);
9 work professional and effectively with others through collaboration and negotiation, as sole practitioner and within a team (CA1, CA4, CA11);

Subject-Specific Practical Skills
10 employ the necessary skills to select appropriate materials and processes suitable for the realisation of design intent, taking into account specific aesthetic and material characteristics (CA1, CA2, CA9, CA10, CA10);
11 realise specialist applications for resolved designed textile outcomes and artefacts (CA1, CA11);
12 apply knowledge of the textile environment, design skills or commercial and manufacturing contexts to effective career planning (CA9, CA10, CA11, CA12).

Course learning outcomes / Module cross reference

Module Title Module Code Learning Outcomes

Critical and Contextual Studies: Foundation CP3010 LO1,LO3,LO9
Project AA3001 LO4, LO5,LO6,LO7,LO10,LO11
Techniques AA3002 LO2, LO4,LO10,LO11
Formats AA3004 LO2,LO8,LO9,LO12,

Critical and Contextual Studies 1 (3D) CP4011 LO1,LO2,LO3
Workshop Practice DN4005 LO1, LO4 LO5, LO10, LO11
3D Design Principles DN4006 LO1, LO4, LO10
Visual Research and Communication DN4007 LO1, LO4

Critical and Contextual Studies 2 (3D) CP5011 LO1, LO2, LO3, LO6, LO7, LO12
Materials, Technology and Markets DN5021 LO2, LO3, LO5, LO6, LO7, LO8, LO9, LO12
3D Design DN5011 LO1, LO6, LO10,
Design Resolution DN5006 LO1, LO2 ,LO4, LO5, LO6, LO7, LO10, LO11

Critical and Contextual Studies 3 Dissertation(3D) CP6011 LO1, LO3
World of Work DN6035 LO7, LO8, LO9, LO11, LO12
3D Project Design and Development DN6013 LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, LO5, LO6,
Major Project Realisation; Textile Design DN6014 LO1, LO2, LO3, LO5, LO6, LO7, LO8, LO9, LO10, LO11, LO12

Principle QAA benchmark statements

Art and Design 2017

Assessment strategy

The assessment strategy for the course has been designed holistically, to ensure manageable timing, workloads and clarity of expectations for students, and to avoid duplication of assessment of learning outcomes. The course deploys a range of formative and summative assessment methods, including peer appraisal and individual reflective practices throughout studio based work and personal projects. Staff and students engage in dialogue to promote a shared understanding of the basis on which academic judgements are made; this is activated through discussion and group preparation for assessment.

The assessment regimes for the modules and tasks are designed together with the briefs, prior to the start of the year, taking into account student, external examiner, professional collaborator and colleague feedback from previous instances. The requirements of briefs and their components, the assessment criteria, grading scheme and descriptors are published and explained to students at the start of the year and are designed to be used as consistently as possible, to avoid unnecessary complication. Assessment is related to the achievement of learning outcomes; qualification frameworks and subject benchmark statements are consulted to ensure clear language that is appropriate to level of study. Students are informed of the procedures for first, second and parity marking, and external examiner scrutiny of the assessment process and marks, to ensure that they understand and have confidence in the probity of the process and security of the final marks.

In every case, there is required formative assessment and feedback prior to summative assessment at set points. This is recorded so that it can be used by both students and staff to track further progress and engage support where it is required. Feedback follows good pedagogic practice in that it is constructed as ‘feed-forward’, with a focus on specific actions and strategies as to how to improve, not only on what requires improvement. Challenge to students is managed, so that students performing well in-year are encouraged to strive for excellence, while those performing less well experience clear, targeted and structured guidance, including notice of where they are doing well or are showing potential.

The course adheres to the University’s requirements for assessment and feedback turnaround times and to academic regulations for marking and second making sampling. Additionally, the course engages in Subject and School parity exercises to ensure that assessment standards are consistent. This is especially important in relation to studio delivery through which students on the same modules will be undertaking differing projects.

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

Work- related learning is embedded in the course both formally in the professional studies modules in levels 5 and 6 and throughout the course through live projects, industry visits, visiting speakers and events such as ‘Making a Living’ and ‘Celebration’ weeks.

Work-related learning is an integrated and mandatory part of the course, in line with the University’s policy of securing a work related learning opportunity for each undergraduate student during their studies, with at least 70 hours working on live projects for real organisations delivered through placement, live briefs, real entrepreneurial activities or short in term work placements built into the course. Students will experience a competitive recruitment process or pitching for opportunities, and they will be required to reflect on their experience of the project or placement and undertake forward career action planning.

The majority of tutors and lecturers on the course are practitioners and share their knowledge and experience with students throughout their course of study. The studio delivery of the course means that opportunities for work related learning through collaboration with external companies, agencies, institutions, competitions and professionals can be taken up as they arise, if appropriate to the programme of study.

Studios function as simulations of professional workplaces, with expectations of professional standards, conduct and delivery building as the students progress from level to level. During their final year, students are expected to work independently towards completion of professional portfolio of projects, culminating in exhibition of these in the annual summer show and associated events.

Course specific regulations

ACADEMIC PROGRESSION: As a condition of progressing from level 3 to 4, level 4 to 5 and level 5 to 6, students are required 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 480-credit degree will be 8 years. The prescribed pattern of study in this instance shall be as follows:

Year 1: AA3001 Project & AA3002 Techniques
CP3010 Critical and Contextual Studies: Foundation & AA3004 Formats

Year 2: AA3001 Project & AA3002 Techniques
CP3010 Critical and Contextual Studies: Foundation & AA3004 Formats

Year 3: DN4005 Workshop Practice
DN4006 3D Design Principles

Year 4: DN4007 3D Visual Research and Communication
CP4011 Critical & Contextual Studies 1 (3D)

Year 5: DN5006 Design Resolution
DN5011 3D Design

Year 6: DN5021 Materials, Technology and Markets
CP5011 Critical & Contextual Studies 2 (3D)

Year 7: DN6009 Major Project Realisation: Textile Design
DN6013 3D Project Design & Development

Year 8: DN6035 Critical and Contextual Studies
CP6011 Critical & Contextual Studies 3: Dissertation (3D)

Modules required for interim awards

All modules on the course are core and compulsory (there is no flexibility in choice or in the order in which modules may be taken). The part time route is prescribed (section 25).

Module Title Module Code
Critical and Contextual Studies: Foundation CP3010
Project AA3001
Techniques AA3002
Formats AA3004
Critical and Contextual Studies 1 (3D) CP4011
Workshop Practice DN4005
3D Design Principles DN4006
Visual Research and Communication DN4007
Critical and Contextual Studies 2 (3D) CP5011
Materials, Technology and Markets DN5021
3D Design DN5011
Design Resolution DN5006
Critical and Contextual Studies 3 Dissertation (3D) CP6011
World of Work DN6035
3D Project Design and Development DN6013
Major Project Realisation; Textile Design DN6014

Arrangements for promoting reflective learning and personal development

The School’s studio system of curriculum delivery embeds reflective learning and personal development planning throughout the course.

Most summative assessment is at the end of year-long modules, with several formative assessment points formally instituted in the course of the year. At these interim formative assessment and feedback points, students reflect on their progress to date with their peers and course staff (with the benefit of feedback from professional partners), seek help where they identify the opportunity for improvement in learning strategies and outcomes, and make recommendations to themselves for future development. The feedback and student reflection is recorded and forms an action plan for the next period of study.

This system is highly individualised, but also benefits from peer engagement in studio critiques. The School’s programme of employability events and embedded work-related learning within the curriculum supports students’ personal development planning. Through these initiatives, students are increasingly able, as they progress from year to year, to understand the professional environment of their disciplines, the various opportunities available to them, and how to shape their learning according to their ambitions.

Throughout the modules and the course therefore, in this way, students build bodies of work, including reflections on progress and achievement, and planning for their future achievement of targets.

In the foundation year the main outcome of the course is contained in the student’s portfolio of projects containing edited and organised versions of all the work the student has undertaken during the course. It is used both for the purposes of self-reflection and evaluation, formal assessment and, in various versions, to apply for jobs or courses. Building the portfolio is a continuous enterprise. Every project, practical or intellectual exercise can be represented in the portfolio but also has to contribute to the document as a whole and in its parts. Students learn to reflect on their work both as a specific item and in the context of their own developing profile in their portfolio.

Other external links providing expertise and experience


Career, employability and opportunities for continuing professional development

Employability skills are integrated throughout the course. During their final year, students are expected to work independently towards the completion of a professional portfolio of projects, culminating in exhibition of these in the annual graduate show. Level 6 students are encouraged to develop entrepreneurial opportunities during the course and apply for and participate in subject-specialist work placements as well as gain professional experience appropriate to their discipline throughout the course. The course has collaborative links with the creative industries directly through visiting professional designer/makers who regularly teach and mentor throughout the programme.
Work-related learning is an integrated and mandatory part of the course, with at least 70 hours working on live projects live briefs and real entrepreneurial activities are built into the course. The level six module ‘Portfolio’ is designated as the work-related learning module. Students will experience pitching for opportunities, and they will be required to reflect on their experience of the project and undertake forward career action planning.

Students can also benefit from support and guidance from the Careers and Employability services and the University’s business incubator unit, ‘Accelerator’.

Career opportunities

Roles for textiles graduates can include designers, designer-makers, fashion buyers and stylists. We have graduates working for brands including Harrods, River Island and Timberland.

We’ve also had students shortlisted for awards such as the Bemz Design Award.

This course is also excellent preparation for a design-based master’s degree.

Entry requirements

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

  • at least one A level (or a minimum of 32 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification, eg BTEC Subsidiary/National/BTEC Extended Diploma)
  • English Language GCSE at grade C/4 or above (or equivalent)

We encourage applications from international/EU students with equivalent qualifications. We also accept mature students with diverse backgrounds and experiences.

If you live in the UK, you will be invited to a portfolio interview. If you live outside the UK you will be required to submit a small portfolio of work via email.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2019/20 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 15 Aug 2019 Last validation date 15 Aug 2019  
JACS codes
Route code TXTIFY

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 03 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
AA3001 Project Core 30 CITY SPR+SUM WED AM
AA3002 Techniques Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR FRI PM
AA3004 Formats Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR WED PM
CP3010 Critical & Contextual Studies: Foundation Core 30 CITY AUT+SPR WED AM

Stage 1 Level 03 January start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
AA3001 Project Core 30 CITY SPR+SUM WED AM
AA3002 Techniques Core 30 CITY SPR+SUM MON PM
AA3004 Formats Core 30 CITY SPR+SUM FRI PM
CP3010 Critical & Contextual Studies: Foundation Core 30        

Stage 2 Level 04 Not currently offered

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

Stage 3 Level 05 Not currently offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
CP5011 Critical & Contextual Studies 2 (3D) Core 30        
DN5006 Design Resolution Core 30        
DN5011 3D Design Core 30        
DN5021 Materials, Technology and Markets Core 30        

Stage 4 Level 06 Not currently offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
CP6011 Critical & Contextual Studies 3: Dissertation (3D) Core 30        
DN6009 Major Project Realisation: Textile Design Core 30        
DN6013 3D Project Design & Development Core 30        
DN6035 World of Work Core 30