MA Fashion Futures

This course looks beyond fashion design as we currently know it. Mixing design practices, innovative thinking and conceptual speculations, along with technology and science, the course finds strategies for the future state of fashion in ecological, cultural and social contexts.

Work by MA Fashion Futures students, 2014. Film by Katharina Thiel

Work by Fiona Fung

MA Fashion Futures on LCF News

Read about MA Fashion Futures 2016 graduate Fiona Fung

Wallpaper Magazine, April 2015

Professor Dilys Williams interviewed in Wallpaper Magazine, April 2015

'Temporarily Beautiful' by Katharina Thiel, 2013

Funding opportunities

Use UAL's fees and funding calculator to estimate how much your studies may cost you in your first year, and what funding may be available to you.

Use UAL’s scholarships search to find out what you might be eligible for.

Postgraduate loans of up to £10,000 are now available for eligible UK and EU students. A full list of eligibility criteria and information on applying can be found on the postgraduate loans webpage.

Facts

Course Leader

Alex McIntosh

Course Location

Mare Street

Study LevelPostgraduate
Study ModeFull time or Part time
Course Length15 months (Full time) or up to 5 years (Flexible)
Home/EU Fee

£8,250 (Full Time).

£920 per 20 credit unit (Flexible).
£2,760 per 60 credit unit (Flexible).

Please note that the fees payable on the Flexible route will be those of the academic year in which the unit(s) are studied.

Please note that students following the Flexible route are not eligible to apply for Scholarships and Bursaries.

UAL Home/EU alumni receive a £1,000 discount.

Course fees may be paid in instalments

International Fee

£17,230 (Full time).

UAL International alumni receive a £1,000 discount (Full Time only)
Course fees may be paid in instalments

Please note that the Flexible mode of study is not available for International students.

Autumn Term Dates12 Sep - 02 Dec 2016 (Fourth Term 18 Sep - 01 Dec 2017)
Spring Term Dates09 Jan - 17 Mar 2017
Summer Term Dates18 Apr - 07 Jul 2017
Application Route

Direct to College

Application DeadlineApplications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.

Content and structure

In this ground breaking course, you are encouraged to explore and develop speculative fashion practice and theoretical perspectives in parallel. You will identify new territories for fashion and work in new spaces to communicate ideas in relation to design for sustainability where digital design applications, the interplay of hard and soft sciences, design futuring, fashion design theory, fashion thinking, meta design, ethics, politics, psychology and anthropology are considered.

You will examine a diverse range of methodologies and technologies, including film, audio, digital and online platforms, garment prototyping, publishing, events and performance. Critical fashion practice and reflexive thinking to test, reframe and make responses to existing paradigms, is key to MA Fashion Futures. This will enable you to develop a very personal response to, and a critique of, the current paradigm and the role and activities of fashion.

This course is aligned to and supported by the Centre for Sustainable Fashion and the Fashion Digital Studio.

Course Structure

Full Time 15 months level 7 180 credits
Flexible up to 5 years level 7 180 credits

Full Time mode

September to February

Critical Fashion Practice (40 credits)
Research Methodologies (20 credits)

February to June

Fashion Fictions: Speculative Prototyping (40 credits)
Collaborative Unit (20 credits)

June to December

Masters Project (60 credits)

Part Time Mode

February to September

Fashion Fictions: Speculative Prototyping (40 credits)
Collaborative Unit (20 credits)

September to June

Critical Fashion Practice (40 credits)
Research Methodologies (20 credits)

June to January

Masters Project (60 credits)

Flexible Mode

The same units are taught at the same times in the year as on the full time mode but you can complete the 20 credit units in any order and you have the option of taking longer to complete the course. You may build credits towards a Postgraduate Certificate, a Postgraduate Diploma, or a Masters. If you get offered a place on the Flexible route your Course Leader will advise you on the best possible combination of units and when best to take them.

Please note that 120 credits must be successfully completed before the Masters Project is started.

The Masters must be completed within five years.

Travelling across London

The renowned London College of Fashion library is at our John Prince’s Street site, and you will need to travel to this site, and possibly others, during your course to use the library, which is open seven days a week in term time, and for tuition and special events.

Additional costs

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

Course structure

The information outlined is an indicative structure of the course. Whilst we will aim to deliver the course as described on this page, there may be situations where it is desirable or necessary for the University to make changes in course provision, for example because of regulatory requirements or operational efficiencies, before or after enrolment. If this occurs, we will communicate all major changes to all applicants and students who have either applied or enrolled on the course.

Please note that due to staff research agreements or availability, not all of the optional modules listed may be available every year.

In addition, the provision of course options which depend upon the availability of specialist teaching, or on a placement at another institution, cannot be guaranteed. Please check this element of the course with the course team before making a decision to apply.

Webpage updates

We will update this webpage from time to time with new information as it becomes available. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact a member of the course team.

Staff

Alex McIntosh is Course Leader.

Alex has been working in the area of fashion and sustainability for more than ten years. He is a long-standing member of the Centre for Sustainable Fashion and Managing Director of the pioneering menswear brand Christopher Raeburn.

His research interests revolve around the exploration of business models that nurture sustainable innovation, community engagement and creative thinking. He has developed a number of programmes to support and encourage emerging fashion businesses towards sustainable practices, working with The Ethical Fashion Forum, The British Fashion Council and Enterprise UK as well as the CSF. Alex has also consulted for a wide range of larger brands, most recently The Selfridges Group, to develop and launch their Buying Better programme and the Bright New Things Initiative.

Alex is currently working on the Fire research project as a Co-Investigator, exploring ways in which an active culture of research and development towards sustainability can be embedded in the UK Fashion SME community. As Co-investigator on the TRANSFER project - a collaboration with the University of Sheffield psychology department - he explores the value-action gap in consumer culture.

Alex has written extensively for a number of publications in relation to fashion and sustainability and developed and authored the year long i-Sustain series for i-D magazine and i-D online.

Careers

MA Fashion Futures graduates apply their skills in a multitude of ways. Recent graduate profiles include setting up a shared space for design, make and participation: Here today, Here Tomorrow. One group of graduates formed a network to create this business, including one graduate who is continuing her studies at PhD level alongside the business. Other graduates are working at various levels of the industry in design and strategy positions, one has recently gained an award from Deutsche Bank to develop her own work and another works at Alexander McQueen. Two of last year's graduates achieved world recognition through awards, at the Earth Awards and The Observer Ethical Awards.

LCF Careers

LCF Careers provides a comprehensive career management service supporting our students to become informed and self-reliant individuals able to plan and manage their own careers.

Entry requirements

Course entry requirements

Entry to this course is highly competitive: applicants are expected to achieve, or already have, the course entry requirements detailed below.

  • An Honours degree at 2.1 or above in a related discipline. Applicants with a degree in another subject may be considered, depending on the strength of the application.

OR

  • Equivalent qualifications

OR

  • Relevant and quantitative industrial experience for a minimum of three years

Selection for interview will be made on the basis of your application, including the personal statement, the reference, and the supporting written statement. If you are selected for interview you will be asked to bring examples of previous written work and to undertake a written aptitude test.

Student selection criteria

The course seeks to recruit students from diverse socio-economic and cultural backgrounds, and welcomes applications from mature students.

What we look for

The course seeks to recruit students who can demonstrate:

  • Strong commitment and motivation towards a career in an aspect of the fashion industry
  • Awareness and relevant experience of fashion
  • Appropriate knowledge and skills commensurate with planned entry into the course

English language requirements

All classes are conducted in English. The level required by the University for this course is IELTS 7.0 with a minimum of 6.0 in any one skill.

For more information, read the University's English Language requirements page.

International applicants

The International Recruitment Office at the London College of Fashion will help to guide you through the application process and answer any specific questions that you may have regarding our courses. This may include portfolio advice, the application process and fee advice. We offer a ‘drop-in’ facility for applicants who may be in London and wish to obtain further course and admissions information. Please contact us for further information on this facility. We can also arrange a tour of our facilities if we are given prior notice.

To find out more about studying in London, please visit the International students section of the London College of Fashion website.

How to apply

You can apply for this course using our online application form – the link to this is below. Before you apply, we recommend you take some time to read the following details about the application process, including guidance on the extra information we will ask you to provide.

Required information for all postgraduate course applications

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

  • Personal details (including full name; date of birth; nationality; permanent address and English language level)
  • Current and/or previous education and qualification details
  • Employment history
  • Referee details (this course requires two references, one of which should be academic).

Before you can submit the form, you’ll also need to agree to the terms and conditions for how we process your data – these are explained in the form.

Please note, if you’re an international applicant we will need to contact you separately to ask for copies of certain documents (for example, English language qualification/certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas).

Extra information required for applications to this course

Once you have submitted the form, you will receive a confirmation email that includes links to where you should submit the extra information we require for the selection process:

Personal statement

The personal statement is your opportunity to tell us about yourself and your suitability for the course that you intend to study.

Some key points to consider:

  • Make sure that personal statement is your own work and is about you
  • Why you want to study the course you are applying to
  • Try to link your skills and experience required to the course
  • Demonstrate your interest and enthusiasm for the course and link these with your personality
  • Make sure it is organised and literate (grammar, spelling, punctuation check).

Essay

You should submit a 1,000 to 1,500 word written essay with your application. The essay title that you should respond to is:

'Envisage a world where you would like to live, what place does fashion have in this world and what does it look like?’

Please include bibliography and referencing.

Study proposal

Your proposal should be no more than 500 words (excluding research sources and bibliography). It should:

  • Describe the context of the proposal, demonstrating your knowledge, skills and values relating to the cultural, ecological and social significance of your area of interest.
  • Suggest the area for exploration in your project proposal, either from the perspective of designer, buyer, maker, communicator or wearer.
  • Consider that the proposal may change significantly in consultation with tutors, however we need to ensure that you are thinking on the appropriate level for MA study.

You should include:

  • Research sources - Give details of libraries, museums, galleries, events, organisations, companies and any special archives that you are planning to visit and investigate or have done so as part of your research for your proposal.
  • Bibliography - Insert relevant documentary material. Keep a full record of all original and documentary material consulted. List appropriate reading material using the Harvard Referencing System.
  • Appendices / Images - Insert any additional material that you consider relevant to the core of the proposal or your essay.

Portfolio

Students are accepted with a range of skills relating to the course. It is essential that all candidates are able to communicate their work in an engaging format.

This may include a digital portfolio of work to visually communicate ideas around design. This may range from illustration, photography, technical development, graphic illustration of text, film and multi-media communication and 3D or theoretical work.

Please note, you can submit text and as many website links as you need to, but the portfolio form does not allow you to upload files.

Start your application now

Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.

Apply now for the full-time study mode

Apply now for the flexible study mode

The application form can be saved as you fill it out, so you don’t need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you submit the application form.

We will send you emails as you progress through the application process, so do check your inbox (and junk folder, just in case). These emails will contain important information about your application, and links to the online forms you should use to submit the extra information required. 

Course units

Critical Fashion Practice

In this unit you will explore and examine speculative ideas for fashion futures, meta design, design futuring, design fictions, critical design, critical making, fashion theory and fashion thinking. You will develop a body of research, both physical and theoretical, to support the development of your understanding of critical fashion practice. Working with emerging perspectives and developments in hard and soft sciences, new technologies, art and design, critical thinking, philosophy and digital media you will collect and collate visual and physical samples, trials and tests. You will be encouraged to develop a parallel exploration of personal philosophical and critical perspectives, finally presenting this body of work as a coherent research ‘document’, both written and visual. You will develop physical and written work in parallel. You will also be introduced to the importance of drawing as a bridge between theory and practice, and you will examine various writing styles and their appropriateness for a diversity of audiences. You will be introduced to the importance of reflexivity in critical practice, and will be expected to keep a reflective journal of your development.

Research Methods

The purpose of this unit is to provide you with an overview of the range of research methods, approaches and tools that are available to you in order to conduct your postgraduate project. The unit will cover philosophy and ethics in research, primary and secondary research methods including quantitative, qualitative and visual research methods, and how to analyse, evaluate and disseminate research findings. The unit will consider research in a range of contexts relevant to the cultural and creative industries and enable you to understand the relationship between theory and practice. This unit is taught and experienced in parallel with Critical Fashion Practice to support the development of new perspectives, points of provocation, risk taking, critical tools and emerging competencies.

Fashion Fictions: Speculative Prototyping

In this unit you will examine your emerging critical and philosophical perspective towards speculative prototyping in preparation for your Masters Project. You will do in-depth research into an area of personal interest informed by your chosen process or processes and interest in particular theoretical perspectives and /or points of provocation. Speculative prototyping is a process whereby your outcomes stand outside the commercial imperative that drives fashion, allowing you to explore design in a purely conceptual form. You will develop methodologies in parallel for practice based enquiry informed by ideas developed through Design Fictions, Design Anthropology and Design Futures. Your outcome will be speculative prototypes in a chosen media, working towards your Masters project proposal, with parallel supporting written documentation. You will also develop your drawing as a critical skill and your reflective journal to inform future development. Your physical and written work will be presented in a manner designed to engage and communicate with a design literate audience.

Collaborative Unit

This unit is designed to enable you to innovate, engage in developmental processes and to participate in collaborative working practices. You will be encouraged to engage in the professional negotiation and networking skills that you will need in order to be successful in the cultural and creative industries. The nature of this collaboration may be within your own course, with students on other courses, via an exchange, or with industry. The project that you undertake will depend upon your discipline and the specific requirements of your course.

Masters Project

The Masters Project is an important piece of work which will provide an opportunity for you to demonstrate your knowledge and skills in relation to your discipline and chosen project. Throughout the Masters Project, you are guided and supported by tutorials and peer and staff evaluation at interim stages. You will be allocated a supervisor for your project and will complete a learning contract outlining how you intend to develop and deliver your project. The Masters Project may take a variety of forms by negotiation and is assessed by presentation in an agreed format.

Enquire about this course

If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form.

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