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London College of Fashion

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BA (Hons) Fashion Public Relations and Communication

College
LCF
Start date
September 2018
Course length
3 years
UCAS code
4T39

Course summary

Applications closed 2018/19
Applications for 2018/19 entry to this course have now closed. Visit the Clearing page for a full list of UAL courses that are open for application.

This course equips students for an exciting career in fashion PR and communications within an agency or brand.

About

BA (Hons) Fashion Public Relations and Communication teaches crisis and reputation management, strategic communication planning andwill simulate a professional working environment where you will be encouraged to collaborate. The course is underpinned by a global cultural and historical context.

Great reasons to apply

  • Graduates are highly employable as strategic communicators in the global fashion industry, going on to work for agencies and brands including The Communications Store, M&M Management, Hill and Knowlton, and the creative agency Exposure.
  • Taught by industry professionals.
  • A majority of students secure placements in a PR role within the fashion industry.

Location

This course is based at Lime Grove in Shepherd’s Bush. Find out about the local area, including Holland Park and Notting Hill in our local area guides on the Student Life pages.

Student and graduate work

Student work for the brand Fonnesbech

Student work by Emma Fazakerley

Student work by Chiana Capacyachi

Latest news from this course

Facilities

Library, John Princes Street

LCF library and archives

Take a tour of LCF's world renowned fashion library, ideal for research and study.

Photo Studio, Lime Grove

Media facilities at Lime Grove

Take a tour of Lime Grove's media facilities from photographic studios to darkrooms.

Canteen, Mare Street

LCF's social spaces

Explore our social spaces, for collaborative study and breaks, across our six sites in London.

Course details

You will explore fashion communication in cultural, social and business contexts, and this theoretical and practical work, together with your Cultural and Historical Studies, will ensure that you graduate with the professional and creative skills appropriate for PR and fashion communication. The course is taught by academic and industry-based experts, and there are excellent links with the industry through work experience, live industry-led projects, and an exciting programme of industry speakers.

Course structure

The academic year for this course is divided into Block 1 and Block 2.

Block 1 is of 15 weeks’ duration from late September to February. In accordance with the University timetable, there will be a four week holiday in December.

Block 2 is also of 15 weeks’ duration from mid-February to the end of June with a four week holiday for Easter.

Year one

  • Introduction to Fashion Communication
  • Public Relations and Branding in the Fashion Industry
  • Introduction to Cultural and Historical Studies
  • Contemporary Communication Campaigns
  • Better Lives

Year two

  • Cultural and Historical Studies
  • Crisis Communication and Brand Reputation
  • Inside the Industry
  • Option: Situating Your Practice unit
  • Innovative Communication Tactics

Year three

  • Research for Independent Project: Fashion Public Relations and Communication
  • Cultural and Historical Studies Dissertation
  • Independent Project: Fashion Public Relations and Communication
  • Realising Your Tactics

Students on this course might be invited to participate in study trips. This may involve, for example, visits to key areas of capital cities, factories, stores and museums. Attendance on these trips is not compulsory but recommended. Details regarding timings and costs will be issued closer to the relevant trips.

Course units

Year one

The Introduction to Fashion Communication unit aims to introduce you to your course and its subject specialism as well as to effective learning and studentship at undergraduate level. It will orientate you to the practices and knowledge‐base needed to understand your discipline and help you to develop your skills for independent & collaborative learning, reflection and your own self development. Students come from many diverse educational backgrounds and a part of this unit will enable to reflect on your own background and how that shapes the way you approach your course.

PR and Branding in the Fashion Industry will introduce you to the concept of public relations as a communication tool and its relationship to branding. Through studying the evolving fashion communication landscape and the core theories and models that inform the discipline, you will develop a knowledge of contemporary practices within PR and branding. As a group, you will be introduced to research tools to help you create a fictitious brand, developing its identity, brand values and positioning. You will learn about how brands deliver their key messages and
narratives to selected audiences. Furthermore, you will be introduced to technical skills that will allow you to develop a brand concept in a visually engaging and creative manner. Individually, you will develop a plan to launch the brand and reflect on how you have applied the theories and models of communication to validate your approach.

Introduction to Cultural and Historical Studies introduces you to key concepts and ways of thinking about fashion and its context in society and culture. You will attend lectures, seminars and workshops, and do a significant amount of reading of academic texts in order to complete a formal academic essay for assessment. Completion of this unit will allow you to make an informed choice of subject for study in the second year Cultural and Historical Studies unit.

Contemporary Communication Campaigns will explore how brands are developing their communication tactics in response to the advances in digital technology. You will gain an understanding of how fashion brands deliver their key messages through their own digital platforms as well as through external channels. This unit will focus on the relationship between the fashion industry with traditional and non traditional media outlets. It will explore how brands are creating more innovative branded content due to the increasing possibilities afforded to them through digital innovations. It will also investigate the role of the influencer and how they can act as an intermediary for the brand. As a group you will learn how to develop a strategy and realise your tactics that are appropriate for both your brand and audience. Through exploring and experimenting with digital platforms you will develop a campaign that embraces innovation in the field of communication.

Better Lives

London College of Fashion, UAL (LCF) is a leader in fashion design, media and business education. We have been nurturing creative talent for over a century, offering courses in all things fashion. We encourage students to examine the past and challenge the present. To have inventive, assertive ideas that challenge social and political agendas. We give students the skills, opportunities – and above all, the freedom – to put those ideas into practice. By leading the way in fashion design, business, and the media, we influence culture, economics and our society. This unit will provide you with a solid understanding of LCF’ core values and how they connect to your practice. As part of this unit you will explore diversity, social responsibility and sustainability, themes which you will then apply to a selected project. At this stage the emphasis is on how you apply your thinking across these important themes to your practice. Your thinking is more important than a finished piece of work at this point.Fashion can change lives. Through teaching, specialist research, and collaborative work, this unit will get you thinking differently. We want you to use fashion to examine the past, build a sustainable future and improve the way we live. That’s why we call this unit ‘Better Lives’.

Year two

To begin you will be able to study a Cultural and Historical Studies unit of your choice that will broaden or deepen your learning of areas relating to your interests in your chosen field. Options cover the broad cultural context of professional practice in media and communication. You will have the opportunity to participate in lectures, seminars and workshops with students from other courses within your School, and will read relevant academic texts and complete a formal academic essay for assessment.

Crisis Communication and Brand Reputation
This unit provides an opportunity to gain an understanding of how current topics of cultural relevance impact on the fashion industry and how fashion brands respond to issues, including sustainability, ethics, diversity and internationalisation within their strategies. You will study brands that are communicating their responsible practices in a progressive and authentic manner and develop the ability to critique those who are not.

You will explore ways in which brands build their profiles using long‐term responsible strategies, to develop and maintain trust and relevance, and protect themselves against potential issues and crisis. Within this unit, you will be provided with the tools to respond effectively to a fictional crisis through the most appropriate media channels. In order to minimise the impact of the crisis and maximise the positive messages, you will learn ways of managing brand communication, through platforms and speaking directly to consumers and the media.

Inside the Industry unit provides an opportunity to gain insight into critical issues, innovations and challenges within the global fashion, media and communication industries. You will participate in seminars with students from your course and programme and attend panel discussions with industry practitioners. In groups you will interrogate and respond to relevant themes that emerge. The unit will also help you to identify relevant areas of professional conduct and prepare you for working in an industry context.

Situating Your Practice unit

Industry Project

This unit provides an opportunity to situate your practice by undertaking a project with industry. It fosters a deeper understanding and appreciation of professional practices, principles, roles and responsibilities to help you define your career ambitions. During this unit you will be expected to manage your own learning and build on existing skills and knowledge in a professional context. You will work collaboratively with students from your course and programme to produce a creative outcome in response to a brief developed with industry.

Work Placement

This unit provides an opportunity to situate your practice by undertaking a professional work placement. It fosters a deeper understanding and appreciation of sector practices, principles, roles and responsibilities to help you define your career ambitions. During this unit you will be expected to manage your own learning and build on existing skills and knowledge in a professional context. The unit requires a minimum of 60 work placement hours and significant personal reflection evidenced in the submission of a placement report.

LCF Careers provide career guidance and one to one opportunities starting in your first year at LCF, to help you plan ahead and prepare for your work experience. You will be expected to engage and be proactive in securing your own work experience and one that is suitable to your own personal development, skills, course requirements and career aspirations. This means producing an updated CV and directly applying to companies for work experience using LCF CAREERS LIVE, LCF’s own job board, as well as other resources. You will also be expected to feedback on your work experience after your work experience.

International Study Communication

This unit provides an opportunity to apply previous learning whilst studying your subject in a different institution. You will develop skills within your practice and gain credits for your current course whilst engaging with the academic culture of your host institution. The unit also demands a critical approach to the management of your own learning through reflection and planning. Please check with the Exchange and Mobility Officer for an up-to-date list of partnerships for your programme. Students studying at a partner institution in Europe for a minimum period of three months (approx. 12 weeks) will be eligible for Erasmus grant. We are unable to guarantee that every course will have an agreement with a partner host institution. As such, this unit is subject to availability. There will be a selection and application process for students who are interested in applying to take this unit of study.

Innovative Communication Tactics will explore how brands develop their communication strategy and put them into practice through the implementation of tactics. Through lectures and workshops, you will acquire knowledge of producing a range of communication tactics across different mediums that are core to your discipline, from concept stage to realisation. Through research and interrogation of current practices you will identify and explore communications tools used within the industry and develop an understanding of how they can be used to support the brand strategy.

Responding to a client brief, you will formulate and realise an appropriate tactic, applying your professional and technical skills to execute it. You will be encouraged to network with other creatives to enhance your ability to verbally, visual or statically communicate your ideas, situating them appropriate to the sector. You will be given the opportunity to advance your learning either through collaborative practice or through the development of relevant skills that will enable you to realise conceivable tactics.

Year three

To begin you will undertake the Research for Independent Project: PR & Communication building on the research skills you have acquired throughout the course, you will be expected to further develop and apply these skills to conduct thorough and rigorous research into a brand of your choice.

The focus of this research is to identify specific challenges the brand is currently facing and potential communication opportunities for the brand. You will be expected to plan and apply various and focused primary research techniques accompanied by self‐directed secondary research at an advanced level that will lead you to the issues and opportunities you will address in your Independent Project through a communication campaign.
You will analyse the brand’s current communication strategy and critically evaluate the brand's social, cultural and ethical context. You will also investigate trends in communication and the external environment that could affect your brand or inform the focus of your campaign.

Realising Your Tactics will prepare you for the transition into the professional world or further study. You will be expected to choose and realise one of your tactical concepts formulated in your Final Major Project, and develop them into an outcome. You will be proactive in networking and identifying appropriate collaborators and opportunities that will help facilitate the development process, or familiarise yourself with advanced techniques and skills that will help you accomplish your desired outcomes. Critique sessions with industry professionals will help inform your tactical development.

At the end of this process you will have the opportunity to showcase your work and innovatively share your achievements with others. You will also enhance your professional and career development skills in preparation for your future pathways.

You will undertake a major piece of written work for the Cultural and Historical Studies Dissertation unit. The overall aim of the dissertation is to provide an opportunity for you to demonstrate your understanding of the critical and analytical perspectives developed within cultural and historical theory and your ability to apply those perspectives in a specific study. You will research a topic of your choice that has relevance to the discipline of cultural and historical studies. This may relate to your course discipline, and should elaborate knowledges developed in prior cultural and historical studies units. You will undertake a substantial piece of structured primary and secondary research that critically engages with cultural issues relating to fashion, the body, performance, or the media and communications industries and which reflects on the critical debates
and concerns addressed in your course.

Independent Project: PR & Communication
Based on the primary and secondary research you have undertaken on the Independent Project Research unit, you will develop a 12-month PR and communication campaign for your chosen brand. Embracing recent developments in how brands communicate with their audience and stakeholders, you will produce a strategy that is contemporary and relevant to your brand. You will use idea generation techniques to produce tactics that are realistic and achievable across a 12-month period. You will continue to undertake further research throughout this unit, creatively experimenting with your tactical concepts, that will help you produce a compelling campaign.

Showing your work

All students are advised to set up a profile on portfolio.arts.ac.uk, UAL’s new portfolio platform, which can be done at any point during your time at LCF and will last for up to 12 months after graduation. This platform is often used to source student work for promotional use on the website, social media and for print and can be a great way of getting your work seen. You may also be asked to have a portfolio profile for the selection process when it comes to degree shows.

Staff

Sophia Plessas is the Course Leader for BA (Hons) Fashion Public Relations and Communication and has taught at LCF since 2009.  She has been a senior academic on a number of courses, specialising in Fashion Branding and Communication for the past ten years. Before embarking on an academic career, Sophia worked in the fashion industry as a freelance stylist and producer, styling, among others, Dita von Teese, Amanda Palmer and Shinghai Shoniwa for a number of international publications. She possesses extensive branding experience having worked for a leading New Product Development Agency, creating new ideas and concepts for major brands such as Topshop, Oxfam and Virgin, and as a PR executive for the design industry.

Niamh McEnery is a Senior Lecturer on the course, with over 20 years experience as a communications and marketing specialist within the fashion industry. After completing her studies, Niamh developed her career in PR working for brands as diverse as Max Mara, Wallis, Red or Dead, Office/Offspring footwear and Timberland. Her career has seen her operate in different contexts within the industry; from freelancing to working for boutique fashion agencies, in-house through to the large award winning consumer agency, Shine Communications. More recently Niamh has been the Marketing Manager for Timberland, overseeing and managing the communications in the UK and Ireland, as well as it’s Urban boot business for Northern Europe. Niamh is passionate and knowledgeable about CSR, employee engagement and business ethics, having gained experience through coordinating business community engagement programmes at Timberland, while managing the company's CSR agenda and volunteering events across Northern Europe. She continues to share her communications knowledge and skills through volunteering for a variety of community organisations and charities.

Stephanie Barker Fry is a fashion communications specialist with a career spanning twelve years. She has developed numerous communications campaigns for both contemporary and luxury fashion brands and honed her experience across a variety of companies including Sonia Rykiel, WGSN, Alberta Ferretti, Swarovski and The Bridge Co. Most recently, as Fashion Communications Executive at Swarovski, Stephanie collaborated with international designers including Mary Katrantzou, Marques Almeida and Rodarte, in managing the communication campaigns for the prestigious Swarovksi Collective Programme.  Stephanie continues to work in industry, nurturing emerging designers and currently consults with several brands in this sector.

Kelly Dearsley is the Programme Director for the Fashion Communication courses, which include BA (Hons) Creative Direction for Fashion, BA (Hons) Fashion Public Relations and Communication and MA Fashion Media Practice and Criticism. Kelly began her career as an advertising executive in the 1980s working with clients in the film and entertainment industries. She returned to study Fashion Photography at the London College of Fashion and has worked as a freelance photographer for publications including Guardian, Vogue Pelle and iD magazine. She has made a number of short films which have been shown at film festivals across the world, including Leeds, Liverpool, Greece, Sweden, London, Slovakia, Croatia and Brazil. Her most recent new work I’ve a Feeling We’re not in Kansas any more, a fine art installation/performance was devised and performed in Glasgow at the New Territories International Festival of Live Art in March 2011. Kelly is currently studying for a PhD at LCF. Her research, a comparative study of the reading practices and reception of fashion media in print and digital formats, will be a wholly written thesis that uses phenomenology as a methodology to explore the reception of fashion media paying particular attention to the role of new media in this process.

Associate lecturers

Vicky Batista has gained extensive experience within the fashion PR industry, working for PR agencies, brands and as well as a freelance brand consultant. Most recently Vicky was Head of PR at luxury menswear retailer Hackett London, developing and implementing campaigns both locally and internationally, over the last 14 years.  Vicky’s expertise includes understanding how to strategically position brands within a global market, and focus PR initiatives to create maximum brand awareness.  She has also worked with luxury brands including Fendi, Coach, Ozwald Boateng and Christophe Lemaire.

Guest speakers and visiting practioners

Sophie McElligott, Head of Communications, Dazed Media

Steve Monaghan, Director, Sane Communications

Lucy Dachtler, Senior Global Digital Marketing Manager, Jimmy Choo

Jane Fearnley, Associate Director, Ogilvy Public Relations

Stavros Karelis, Founder, Machine A

Joseph Delaney, Editor, Nowness

Sadie Williams, Fashion Designer, Sadie Williams

Marta Jakubowski, Fashion Designer, Marta Jakubowski

Jade Harwood, Co Founder and Creative Director, Wool & The Gang

How to apply

Opportunities for all

We are committed to making university education an achievable option for a wider range of people and seek to recruit students from diverse socio-economic, cultural and educational backgrounds. We are committed to supporting all our students in achieving their potential both during and after their courses.

Applications for 2018/19 entry for this course are now closed. Applications for 2019/20 entry will open in Autumn 2018

This section includes information on how to apply, course entry requirements, selection criteria, information about interviews and portfolio advice.

You must apply through Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), where you’ll need the following information:

  • University code: U65
  • UCAS code: 4T39

Go to ‘Apply’ from the UCAS home page, where you will be able to register and create a password that gives you unique access as you complete your application form.

Contact us on:

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7514 7344

Or you can use this register your interest form

Please note that the equal consideration deadline is 15 January.

For full details on the application process, visit the Undergraduate application page.

Applications for 2018/19 entry for this course are now closed. Applications for 2019/20 entry will open in Autumn 2018

This section includes information on how to apply, course entry requirements, selection criteria, information about interviews and portfolio advice.

International applicants may apply through one of three routes only:

Further information on applying via UCAS is provided on the Applying through UCAS page.

If applying through UCAS, you will need the following information:

  • University code: U65
  • UCAS code: 4T39

We continue to accept applications throughout the year, but please note that the equal consideration deadline is 15 January.

For full details on the application process, visit the Undergraduate application page or contact the UAL admissions team who can answer any specific questions that you may have regarding LCF's courses tailored for international students. This can include guidance for your portfolio, advice on 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.


Entry requirements

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

The standard minimum entry requirements for this course are:

  • A Level Passes at Grade C or Above Preferred subjects include English, a foreign language and Media Studies;
  • or Merit Foundation Diploma in Art and Design;
  • or Merit, Merit, Merit at BTEC Extended Diploma (preferred subjects) Art & Design;
  • or Merit Pass at UAL Extended Diploma;
  • or Access Diploma or ’96 tariff points from the Access to HE Diploma;
  • or 96 new UCAS tariff points (equivalent to 240 old UCAS tariff points) from a combination of the above qualifications or an equivalent full Level 3 qualification;
  • or equivalent EU or non-EU qualifications;
  • and Five GCSE passes at grade A*-C with grade C or above to include English.

Exceptionally, applicants who do not meet these course entry requirements may still be considered if the course team judges the application demonstrates additional strengths and alternative evidence. This might, for example, be demonstrated by: related academic or work experience; the quality of the personal statement; a strong academic or other professional reference; or a combination of these factors.

Applicants selected for interview will be asked to bring an example of their writing (academic or creative) and/or a creative project that they have worked on for discussion. You will be asked to leave a copy with the interviewers.

English language requirements

All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language you will be asked to provide evidence of your English language ability when you enrol.

The level required by the University for this course is IELTS 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each skill.

Please visit the UAL Language Requirements page. Read carefully and look at the relevant documents.

Student selection criteria

What we look for

The course team seeks to recruit students who can demonstrate:

  • An interest in fashion public relations and the communication of brands
  • A strong interest in fashion and how it is communicated to audiences, such as consumers and the media
  • An enthusiasm for writing and the potential to enhance their writing skills to the professional level required by a strategic communicator
  • An interest in culture, current affairs, trends and the media in all its forms
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the potential to develop a research-based strategy for the client

Advice for applicants selected for interview

Applicants selected for interview will be asked to bring an example of their writing (academic or creative) and/or a creative project that they have worked on for discussion. You will be asked to leave a copy with the interviewers.

Applicants will be expected to demonstrate the following at interview: what particular strengths you can bring to the course; your leisure interests and reasons for those interests; an awareness of different media and their capacity to influence public opinion; an understanding of strategic communications; your future ambitions in fashion communications; a knowledge of key players in this field; and an awareness of key influences in fashion today.

What happens next

All application forms, personal statements and references are read and considered by the course team against the selection criteria listed in the Entry requirements and What we look for sections.

If you applied through UCAS the result of your application will be communicated to you via UCAS through ucastrack. You will only receive further communication directly from the College if your application has been successful. This will be in the form of a full offer pack including details of accommodation, fees, and other important information.

Deferred entry

Deferred entry is normally only allowed in exceptional circumstances. Please contact us before you submit your application if you are considering applying for deferred entry.

Interview week

Applicants on some courses may be invited to attend an Interview. Further details will be sent to you with your interview letter, confirming location and date. International applicants should contact the Admission Office by emailing lcf.international@arts.ac.uk about portfolio requirements (if applicable), interview times and dates.

Potential changes to course structure

Please note: 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 use the register your interest form above.

Fees & Funding

Home / EU fee

£9,250

This applies for the 2018/19 academic year.

Tuition fees for undergraduate degree courses have been set at £9,250 per year for full-time study. This applies from the 2017/18 academic year, subject to changes in the law. Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students, in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Please visit our Undergraduate tuition fees page for more information.

International fee

£19,350

This applies for the 2018/19 academic year.

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.

Scholarship search

Careers and alumni

All of our undergraduate courses offer career development, so that you become a creative thinker, making effective contributions to your relevant sector of the fashion industry.

LCF offers students the opportunity to develop Personal and Professional Development (PPD) skills while studying through:
  • An on-course work experience or placement year. Please note, this is not available on every course; please see the Course Details section for information about work placement opportunities.
  • Access to to speaker programmes and events featuring alumni and industry.
  • Access to careers activities, such as CV clinics and one-to-one advice sessions.
  • Access to a graduate careers service
  • Access to a live jobsboard for all years.
  • Advice on setting up your own brand or company.
Graduates who wish to continue their education at postgraduate level can progress to suitable courses within the College, the University or elsewhere.

Career paths

Many graduates prefer to seek employment as soon as they have completed their undergraduate studies. Graduates from the previous BA (Hons) Fashion Public Relations course are now working with prestigious public relations companies, including The Communications Store, M&M Management, Hill and Knowlton, and the creative agency Exposure. With the changed emphasis of this revalidated course we are confident that graduates will be highly employable as strategic communicators in the global fashion industry.

Alumni

MA Fashion Media Practice and Criticism

This course, part fashion theory and part practical production, teaches students to be actively and critically engaged with the fast-paced fashion media.

College: London College of Fashion
Level: Undergraduate

BSc (Hons) Psychology of Fashion

This unique fashion psychology course provides the critical insight into human behaviour needed to understand and improve the human aspects of the business of fashion. BSc Psychology of Fashion emphasises the application of psychological science in the drive to positively enhance the industry’s impact on its workforce, consumers and the physical environment.

College: London College of Fashion
Level: Undergraduate

BA (Hons) Fashion Journalism

This fashion journalism degree teaches the core skills to become a professional journalist, critic, broadcaster and writer in a rapidly evolving sector.

College: London College of Fashion
Level: Undergraduate

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