Skip to main content
Postgraduate

Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology

Colourful African-themed top design using paint.
Work by Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology student, Hong Zhao.
College
London College of Fashion
Start date
September 2022
Course length
1 year (30 weeks)
The graduate diploma fashion design technology is a one-year intensive course enabling students to develop skills required for postgraduate study or entering the industry. With experimentation at the heart of everything, students are introduced to diverse approaches to research, leading towards a greater sense of integrity and identity in their designed outcomes. We have open briefs that negotiate outcomes with each students based on their individual creative fashion practice.

Course closed for International applications

This course has places available for UK applicants only. We are no longer accepting applications from international students for 2022/23 entry to this course. International applications for 2023/24 entry will open in Autumn 2022.

Re-approval

Please note this course is undergoing re-approval. This is the process by which we ensure the course continues to provide a high quality academic experience. During re-approval there may be some changes to the course content displayed on this page. Please contact us if you have any questions about the course.

Online / low-residency course

You can also study a version of this as an online/low-residency course.

The negotiated approach to the briefs based on individual interests and practice facilitates a variety of postgraduate destinations including but not limited to fashion design, artefact, costume, critical thinking, and sustainability within fashion across various MA courses at UAL and beyond. Please note: This course will run at Level 6, which is equivalent to the final year of BA (Hons) degree, and is a preparatory course for students who want to study at postgraduate level.

Why choose this course at London College of Fashion

    • Critical thinking: course puts a great emphasis on the development of a perspective through an informed sense of agency within your fashion practice.
    • Orientation through diagnosis: We welcome students from diverse creative undergraduate educational backgrounds and support them in finding their direction through a diagnostic approach in fashion.
    • Educational opportunities: graduates have gone on to do a Master’s courses including fashion design in Menswear and Womenswear, Artefact, Costume, Future thinking (MA Fashion Futures), Creative Pattern and Garment Technology at institutions including LCF, CSM, Chelsea, and Wimbledon, in addition to the RCA, Westminster, Kingston, Goldsmiths, FIT New York and Aalto Helsinki.
    • The course offers an option of a guaranteed interview for an MA of your choice within the School of Design and Technology at LCF. For further details, please consult the Course Leader.
    • Industry Expertise: Course invites varied perspectives of visiting industry professionals who will inform creative discussions at different stages in the year. Previous visiting professionals include Richard Kilroy, Julie Verhoeven, Louise Gray, Claire Barrow, Emma Greenhill, James Buck, and Luke Brooks (Rottingdean Bazaar), Peter Jensen, Gabrielle Miller amongst others.
    • Industry Progression: Graduates are well-positioned to gain employment in varied industry roles in the area of design, technology, and future thinking.
    • Sustainability: This course helps students to develop a more conscious practice; to draw on their own values, backgrounds and vision for the future, in order to gain a clearer understanding of how they can create something of worth to themselves and the world.

Open Days

The next Open Day for this course is taking place Monday 21 November. Book now.

Location

This course is based at Mare Street in Hackney. Find out about the local area, including London Fields, Bethnal Green and Hackney Central, in our local area guides on the Student Life pages.

LCF’s move

London College of Fashion is planning to move to a new single campus on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in 2023. This is part of a new development for London, prioritising culture, education and innovation, known as East Bank. Some students studying this course from September 2021 may start their studies in High Holborn and transfer to LCF’s new site in East London to complete them. Please see LCF’s move to the Olympic Park for more information about the College’s relocation.

Student and graduate work

  • Romina-Ferrari-1.jpg
    Work by Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology student, Romina Ferrari.
  • Grad-Dip-FDT-Hong-Zhao-01-model-on-ladder.JPG
    Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology. Student work by Hong Zhao.
  • Romina-Ferrari-2.jpg
    Work by Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology student, Romina Ferrari.
  • Grad-Dip-FDT-Iga-Kampa-01-blue-cream-and-pink-woven-pipe-wired-piece.jpg
    Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology. Student work by Iga Kampa.
  • Romina-Ferrari-3.jpg
    Work by Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology student, Romina Ferrari.

Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology

Graduate work from the LCF summer series 2021

LCF facilities

  • Library, John Princes Street
    Library, John Princes Street Photography by: Ideal Insight
    LCF archives and library

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

  • Mare Street

    Design, pattern cutting & tailoring facilities

    Discover our design studios and workshops across JPS, Mare street, Curtain Road and Lime Grove.

  • Canteen, Mare Street
    Canteen, Mare Street Photography by: Ideal Insight
    LCF's social spaces

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

Course overview

Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology provides you with an opportunity to explore and develop ways of working broadly within expanded fashion design practices. 

Experimentation will be at the heart of the work you do whilst on the course, allowing you to contribute to fashion discourse and bring a sense of integrity to each project.  Within the Diagnostic and Development Project, time will be spent examining various ways of approaching design briefs and the different ways to research, promoting diversity within your work.  Through unpacking the traditional design process and considering new ways of conceptualising the journey, applying sustainability, diversity and identity models you will be provided with the tools to uncover your own design aesthetic.   Combining studio practice with theory is a necessity and not seen as two separate areas. This will be applied through the Fashion Practice and Critical Contexts unit and throughout the course.  The final unit, Negotiated Major Project, allows you to develop a specialist approach to fashion practice and create a set of outputs that guide you towards a postgraduate course, industry or an enterprise destination.

The course applies a genderless approach to the design process.  Time spent exploring experimental processes can be applied to any relevant muse or consumer. The course fosters a peer learning and collaborative working environment through group working during workshops, peer review sessions and team working.

You will progress from the course with a portfolio and realised design work to support future development. Some students study on the Graduate Diploma to further their knowledge and skills before moving into industry or starting their own enterprise. Others use this study opportunity to prepare for MA progression within the Design and Technology programme at LCF, and other institutions within UAL and beyond.  Students from this course progress onto MA programmes within UAL including MA Fashion Design Technology Menswear, MA Fashion Design Technology Womenswear, MA Fashion Futures, MA Costume Design for Performance, MA Innovative Fashion Production, MA Fashion Artefact, MA Textiles, MA Art and Science and MA Pattern and Garment Technology.  Graduates from this course have also gone on to study MA at other institutions including FIT New York, RCA, University of Westminster, Aalto Helsinki, Glasgow School of Art and Kingston University.

You will leave the course with an understanding and confidence in conceptualising and realising your ideas as fashion outputs having studied in a city known for nurturing new talent. 

Contact us

Register your interest to receive information and updates about studying at UAL.

Contact us to make an enquiry.

Course units

Block 1 (Weeks 1-15) 
Diagnostic and Development Project (40 Credits)
Fashion Practice and Critical Contexts (20 Credits) 

Block 2 (Weeks 16-30) 
Negotiated Major Project (60 Credits) 
  

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 applicants and students who have either applied or enrolled on the course. 


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. 
  
Course Units: 

The Diagnostic and Development Project 
Creative fashion design relies on a deep, personal understanding of research that should originate from a multitude of sources and inspirations. To become an innovative designer within the industry requires the ability to take this information and respond by taking risks and alternate paths throughout the design process and beginning to understand what may make you different. This practice-based unit aims to observe and challenge your use of both existing and unfamiliar methods of the research, design, and technical processes to help inform your values as a designer. Through the introduction of different approaches to research and design this unit will encourage an experimental and reflective approach to understanding a design brief centred around fashion product. 

Fashion Practice and Critical Contexts 
The fashion industry is a field of cultural production that circulates highly symbolic objects across many overlapping and interconnected spaces of production and consumption. To work in this field requires a high amount of reflexivity and a tacit understanding of the aesthetic, social and political contexts in which fashion is produced. This unit affords you the opportunity to explore fashion in its cultural and historical contexts and to develop a theoretical underpinning to inform your design practice. You will learn how to apply academic and visual research methods in order to make sense of current issues in fashion practice and how to contextualise them through cultural and critical theory. 

Negotiated Major Project 
This final unit will consolidate the critical, conceptual and experimental thinking developed within block one.  It presents the opportunity for you to devise, explore and realise a personal and in-depth practice-led fashion outcome. You will be expected to propose and critique your intentions for the project and justify any potential innovation within the context of the fashion industry, in relation to both what you produce and how you present it. 

The project will be led by continuously developing your sense of aesthetic that critically reflects on your likes and dislikes as a practitioner whilst also providing the opportunity to explore and realise the challenges of your chosen brief. Visual research methods will be explored in relation to your studio practice giving you the ability to present a professional and self-directed project with appropriate fashion related outcomes.  Your work will evidence your ability to construct, direct and organise an overall professional outcome. By evaluating and reflecting upon your own learning and skills you may direct this project towards postgraduate progression, entering the industry or considering personal enterprise. 

Learning and teaching methods

The following teaching and learning methods are employed to support the integrated achievement of the course outcomes using a blended learning mode of delivery: 

  • Online and in person lectures. 
  • Online and in person seminars. 
  • In person workshops and practical demonstrations. 
  • Online and in person individual and group tutorials. 
  • Critiques.
  • Peer critiques. 

Assessment methods

The following assessment methods are employed to support the integrated aims of the course outcomes:

  • Design and technical development portfolio. 
  • 2D/3D outcomes. 
  • Creative and experimental sampling. 
  • Research folder. 
  • Written essay.
  • Verbal presentation.
  • Reflective Writing.

 

Staff

Tarang Bharti is the course leader for the Graduate Diploma in Fashion Design and Technology, he studied BA (Hons) Fashion Design and Technology Womenswear at London College of Fashion as well as the PGCert in Learning and Teaching at UAL. Alongside his teaching practice, Tarang has been actively involved in the industry with the previous roles including brand manager for Rue-L, product development, and pattern cutting roles for brands such as Claire Barrow and J.Won London. Tarang also owns his leather accessories brand, where he challenges the idea of traditional luxury and craft through innovative use of material and experimental construction. Outside Fashion, Tarang has a photography practice and is currently studying MA Photography Arts at the University of Westminster, where his research enquiry is focusing on the relationship between Science, Photography and Art, through an Objective Ontological Enquiry in Documentary and Art Photography. Tarang firmly believes having a fashion practice should be a fluid term, with trans-disciplinary processes at the heart of it.


Anna Howard is the design lecturer for the Graduate Diploma in Fashion Design and Technology. Her art practice and design education is heavily led by research and intuitive learning through the act of making. Originating from her bachelor studies in Book Arts and Design Anna has maintained a dedication to independent publishing, and creative modes of disseminating new ideas generated through sourcing and collating archival material. She has worked with contemporary artists to produce small editions through her own business and works collaboratively on the imprint Eva.C. With a range of experience across multiple creative industries she has worked with establishments such as Donlon Books, LN-CC, Frame London and Wild Life Archive. Informed by collecting printed material, textiles, and design objects, Anna firmly believes in the power of narratives in objects.

How to apply

Information for disabled applicants

UAL is committed to achieving inclusion and equality for disabled students. This includes students who have:
     
  • Dyslexia or another Specific Learning Difference
  • A sensory impairment
  • A physical impairment
  • A long-term health or mental health condition
  • Autism
  • Another long-term condition which has an impact on your day-to-day life
Our Disability Service arranges adjustments and support for disabled applicants and students. Read our Disability and dyslexia: applying for a course and joining UAL information.

Entry requirements

The standard entry requirements for this course are as follows:

  • An Honours degree or equivalent academic qualification;
  • Professional qualifications recognised as equivalent to an Honours degree;
  • OR a combination of formal qualifications and experiential learning which, taken together, can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required.

APEL (Accreditation of Prior (Experiential) Learning)

Applicants who do not meet these course entry requirements may still be considered in exceptional cases. The course team will consider each application that 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

Each application will be considered on its own merit but we cannot guarantee an offer in each case.

English Language Requirements

IELTS level 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in reading, writing, listening and speaking. Please check our main English Language Requirements .

Selection criteria

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

The course team seeks to recruit students who can demonstrate:

  • The potential to develop their practical and critical abilities through academic study
  • Critical knowledge of a subject area
  • A capacity for intellectual inquiry and reflective thought
  • An openness to new ideas and a willingness to participate actively in their own intellectual development
  • Initiative and a developed and mature attitude to independent study

 

Making your application

This section includes all the information you need on how to apply, how your application is considered and what happens next.

UK/EU students can apply to a postgraduate course at LCF by completing a direct application.

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

External Student Transfer Policy

If you are currently studying at another institution and if you have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current PG course and wish to continue your studies at London College of Fashion, you can apply to transfer. The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Please check our Student Transfer Policy for more important information and be ready to provide us with your current course handbook and transcripts.

Please be ready to provide an official document (translated into English if necessary) from your current university, explaining the learning outcomes of the units you have completed.

Extra information for applications to this course

When you are submitting your application form, you will also need to provide the following pieces of documentation in support of your application:

Curriculum vitae

You will be required to submit a Curriculum Vitae (C.V.) in support of your application. This should include your full education and employment history.

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).

Portfolio

You will be required to submit a digital portfolio with a maximum of 30 images that you consider would help support your application. Submit your portfolio via the university’s digital portfolio tool, PebblePad. More details will be sent to you after you have submitted your application. You should include essential development work from sketchbooks to portfolio final presentations with photography of garments. Label and present any visual work with care, including dates and captions.

Video task


We’d like you to submit a 2-3 minute video to help us learn more about you.

Please speak clearly in English and face the camera. Read our guidance for how to submit your video task and which file types we accept.

Your video task should cover the following topics:

We would like you to identify one project from your portfolio which challenged you and your understanding of fashion design. Explain how this experience has inspired you to apply to the Graduate Diploma in Fashion Design Technology at LCF.

What happens next

All application forms, personal statements and relevant documents are read and considered by the course team against the selection criteria listed in the Entry requirements and Selection Criteria sections. The course team will select applicants to attend an interview.

If you are selected for interview, these will take place online using Teams from Microsoft – please ensure that you download this software prior to the interview date; this is available as a free download from the Microsoft website. We will send you further details at a later point about how we will connect with you for your interview.

If you are successful at the interview stage you will be offered a place. Please note that applicants are not guaranteed an interview.

Please note that if you are unable to attend, the College may not be able to re-schedule.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

The result of your application will be communicated to you through your UAL Portal. If your application has been successful, you will receive a full offer pack including details of accommodation, fees, and other important information.

Applications for this course can only be accepted for this year of entry. Applications for deferred entry cannot be accepted.

Application deadline

12 January 2022 or 13 April 2022

Applications closed 2022/23

We are no longer accepting applications for 2022/23 entry to this course.

The equal consideration deadline has now passed. However, this course will remain open to applications until places have been filled. We recommend you submit your application as early as possible to allow the Admissions team to quickly resolve any queries.

If this course requires a portfolio, we will request this separately after initial processing of your application is complete. Once we request your portfolio, you will have 7 days to submit it.

When you'll hear from us

Once you’ve sent in your application, this will be sent through to our course teams for review. Find out more about what happens after you apply.

Course closed for International applications

This course has places available for UK applicants only. We are no longer accepting applications from international students for 2022/23 entry to this course. International applications for 2023/24 entry will open in Autumn 2022.

This section includes all the information you need on how to apply, how your application is considered and what happens next.

There are 2 ways international students can apply to a graduate diploma course:

Read our immigration and visa information to find out if you need a visa to study at UAL.

You can only apply to the same course once per year. Any duplicate applications will be withdrawn.  Read the UAL international application advice for further information on how to apply.

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

External Student Transfer Policy

If you are currently studying at another institution and if you have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current PG course and wish to continue your studies at London College of Fashion, you can apply to transfer. The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Please check our Student Transfer Policy for more important information and be ready to provide us with your current course handbook and transcripts.

Please be ready to provide an official document (translated into English if necessary) from your current university, explaining the learning outcomes of the units you have completed.

Extra information for applications to this course

When you are submitting your application form, you will also need to provide the following pieces of documentation in support of your application:

Curriculum vitae

You will be required to submit a Curriculum Vitae (C.V.) in support of your application. This should include your full education and employment history.

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).

Portfolio

You will be required to submit a digital portfolio with a maximum of 30 images that you consider would help support your application. Submit your portfolio via the university’s digital portfolio tool, PebblePad. More details will be sent to you after you have submitted your application. You should include essential development work from sketchbooks to portfolio final presentations with photography of garments. Label and present any visual work with care, including dates and captions.

Video task


We’d like you to submit a 2-3 minute video to help us learn more about you.

Please speak clearly in English and face the camera. Read our guidance for how to submit your video task and which file types we accept.

Your video task should cover the following topics:

We would like you to identify one project from your portfolio which challenged you and your understanding of fashion design. Explain how this experience has inspired you to apply to the Graduate Diploma in Fashion Design Technology at LCF.

What happens next

Immigration History Check

Whether you are applying online via UCAS or through a UAL representative you will need to complete an Immigration History Check to identify whether you are eligible to study at UAL. Do be aware, if you do not complete the Immigration History Check we will not be able to proceed with your application.

Initial application check

All application forms, personal statements and relevant documents are read and considered by the course team against the selection criteria listed in the Entry requirements and Selection Criteria sections. The course team will select applicants to attend an interview.

If you are selected for interview, these will take place online using Teams from Microsoft – please ensure that you download this software prior to the interview date; this is available as a free download from the Microsoft website. We will send you further details at a later point about how we will connect with you for your interview.

If you are successful at the interview stage you will be offered a place. Please note that applicants are not guaranteed an interview.

Please note that if you are unable to attend, the College may not be able to re-schedule.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

The result of your application will be communicated to you through your UAL Portal. If your application has been successful, you will receive a full offer pack including details of accommodation, fees, and other important information.

Applications for this course can only be accepted for this year of entry. Applications for deferred entry cannot be accepted.

Application deadline

12 January 2022 or 13 April 2022

The equal consideration deadline has now passed. However, this course will remain open to applications until places have been filled. We recommend you submit your application as early as possible to allow the Admissions team to quickly resolve any queries.

If this course requires a portfolio, we will request this separately after initial processing of your application is complete. Once we request your portfolio, you will have 7 days to submit it.

When you'll hear from us

Once you’ve sent in your application, this will be sent through to our course teams for review. Find out more about what happens after you apply.

After you apply

After you’ve submitted your application, you’ll receive a confirmation email providing you with your login details for the UAL Portal. We’ll use this Portal to contact you to request any additional information, including inviting you to upload documents or book an interview, so please check it regularly.

Once we’ve reviewed and assessed your application, we’ll contact you via the UAL Portal to let you know whether your application has been successful.

Fees and funding

Home fee

£11,550

This fee is correct for 2022/23 entry and is subject to change for 2023/24 entry. Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students on courses lasting more than one year. For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

Home fees are currently charged to UK nationals and UK residents who meet the rules. However, the rules are complex. Find out more about our tuition fees and determining your fee status.

International fee

£23,610

This fee is correct for 2022/23 entry and is subject to change for 2023/24 entry. Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students on courses lasting more than one year. For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

Students from countries outside of the UK will generally be charged international fees. The rules are complex so read more about tuition fees and determining your fee status.

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

The Graduate Diploma in Fashion Design Technology is located within the Graduate School at LCF. This course prepares graduates for suitable MA courses within the Design and Technology programme at LCF, including MA Fashion Design Technology Menswear, MA Fashion Design Technology Womenswear, and MA Pattern and Garment Technology.

Graduates have previously secured places on MA progressions within UAL and LCF, CSM, Chelsea and Wimbledon in addition to the RCA, Westminster, Kingston, Goldsmiths, Aalto Helskinki, Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp.

Alternatively, graduates of this course will be in a position to gain employment in varied roles within the international fashion industry in the area of design and technology.