• CollegeChelsea
  • Start dateOctober 2017
  • Course length1 year (full time)

MA Textile Design

MA Textile Design at Chelsea College of Arts explores creative approaches to sustainable textiles and surface design.

A key feature of the course at Chelsea is the focus on the debate around environmantal issues and the designer's role and responsibility in relation to these. We will encourage you to look at the selecting of raw materials, the impact of production and the product life cycle.

Watch the course video

Course Leader Lorna Bircham talks about MA Textile Design at Chelsea.

Course detail

Content: what students can expect

  • A studio-based, practice-led course. View our textiles workshops image gallery
  • Opportunities for developing and collaborating on pioneering work within the textile industry
  • Study to be underpinned by a supportive theoretical framework, as well as instruction in professional contemporary practice
  • To have access to Chelsea's shared workshops including ceramics, casting, laser cutting, photography, metalwork, woodwork and audio visual editing suite. View the Chelsea facilities section
  • Focus and debate about environmental issues as well as the designer’s role in acting responsibly to these
  • To participate in and develop skills through individual and group tutorials, workshops, online resources and postgraduate talks designed to introduce students to a range of visiting artists, designers and other practitioners

Structure

  • Unit 1: Exploring and understanding research-led practice
  • Unit 2: Contextualising research-led practice
  • Unit 3: Realisation of research-led practice

Studio practice involves evolving and developing a personal programme of studio work and related research. Theoretical Studies provides a framework for students to develop a critical research paper, enabling them to locate their ideas and practice in relation to contemporary debate on cultural and theoretical issues.

Throughout the course students participate in individual and group tutorials, developing their skills through Personal Professional Development workshops and on-line resources while the postgraduate talks are organised that introduce them to a range of visiting artists and practitioners.

Learning and teaching methods

  • Exhibition tutorials
  • General theory forum lectures
  • Independent research
  • Individual and group tutorials
  • Research methodology workshops
  • Technical support and courses

Assessments methods

  • Essays, reports and dissertation
  • Final show examination
  • Peer assessment
  • Student self-evaluation
  • Tutorials and mid-year interim reviews

Facilities

Staff

Teaching Staff

  • Lorna Bircham - Course Leader
  • Sophie Gorton
  • Katherine May
  • Jane Murrow
  • Sarah Risley

Visiting Staff

How to apply

All applicants can apply for this course using our online application form.

Apply

Home / EU deadline

Monday 31 July 2017.

International deadline

There is no deadline for international applications, but students are advised to apply as early as possible.

Further information about the application process

You will need to enter the following information in the online application form:

  • Personal details
  • Current and/or previous education and qualification details
  • Employment history

Once you have submitted the form you will receive a confirmation email.

You will be emailed a link to our online application tool, where you should submit the extra information we require for the selection process:

  • Portfolio of work (30 images)
  • Study plan

The course leader will review your work, may invite you to interview, and will then make a decision on your application.

Please note:

We will send you emails throughout the application process that will contain important information about your application. Please check your inbox.

We will contact you separately to ask for copies of certain documents. For example, your English language certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas.

Entry requirements

  • BA (Hons) degree or equivalent academic qualifications
  • Alternative qualifications and experience will also be taken into consideration
  • Portfolio of work
  • Study plan

If English isn’t your first language

All classes are taught in English. If English isn't your first language you must provide evidence at enrolment of the following:

Study Plan

The study plan is a statement of approximately 800 words describing your current practice and an opportunity for you to explore potential areas that you want to develop in your studies. 

The plan is the starting point for discussions about your postgraduate studies and will evolve during the time you study with us.

When writing your plan you are not expected to have complete answers to all the questions. 

However, you should be able to:

  • Examine your knowledge and experience in relation to your practice
  • Identify questions and areas that you do not know about
  • Demonstrate how you may intend to tackle these questions and areas

How to structure a study plan

You should include links to referenced text or images where appropriate. 

Each of the following sections should be approximately 200 words.

Introduction

  • Briefly describe your work
  • Outline recent developments
  • Identify those aspects you would like to take further at postgraduate level

Development

Describe specific areas, issues and critical ideas that are central to your area of interest.

Methods

How will you go about exploring your area of interest?  

Are there particular methods you will use? For example - drawing, model making, photography.

Resources

Are there resources or equipment that you need to access in order for you to successfully engage in your research?

Portfolio advice

Portfolios should show the following:

  • A range of work and technical skills, which represent the complete design development process, from concept to final outcome 
  • Examples of professional and or industry experience if appropriate
  • A concise portfolio which demonstrates a selective approach
  • An understanding of material qualities, which may be the basis of the research question

At interview and portfolio review

We look for:

  • The necessary textile specific skills to enable you to work independently on a research project
  • The ability to creatively formulate design development concepts and to clearly organise and present ideas
  • Evidence of engagement with the critical debate surrounding contemporary textile design practice and issues relating to sustainability

Fees and funding

Home / EU fee

£8,500 (2017/18).

International fee

£17,920 (2017/18).

Course fees may be paid in instalments.

Additional costs

In addition to tuition fees you are very likely to incur additional costs such as travel expenses and the cost of materials. Please read the information on our additional costs page.

Accommodation

Find out about the accommodation options available and how much they will cost.

Scholarships and awards

There are a number of scholarships and awards available to students on this course. Use our search tool to find out more information.

Scholarships search

Careers and alumni

MA Textile Design graduates have gone on to careers as textiles practitioners and designer-makers either working with, or establishing their own, major and independent fashion labels.

Recent graduates have gone on to designing prints for Ralph Lauren in New York, working on sustainable craft design projects in India as well as in-house designer for Heritage Cashmere.

Other course alumni have gone on to freelance design work, interior product design or other industry related careers, while some go on to undertake further research.

Alumni

  • Katie Jones Irving - Senior Print Designer, Abercrombie & Fitch
  • Print, Tuft and Fold - Zoe Beck (Print), Claire Alderdice (Tuft) and Kim Bassett (Fold)
  • Ichiro Suzuki - Menswear Designer