4 GCSEs incl. Maths & English
16-18: Fully Funded
Fashion Industry Mentors
STUDY LEVEL 3 FASHION DESIGN
Our Level 3 Fashion Design course teaches you the fundamentals of garment creation from original idea to production.
In this challenging and inspiring course, you’ll develop your skills in research, drawing, pattern-cutting and garment construction. We’ll help prepare you for your next step towards an undergraduate degree course or a career in fashion.
- Learn key skills including fashion illustration, pattern cutting and garment construction
- Get advice and support from your Industry Mentor currently working in fashion
- Course equivalent to 3 A-Levels and worth up to 168 UCAS points
IN WORK OR STUDY
84% of students are employed or continuing their studies within 6 months of completing Level 3 Fashion Design.
IN HIGHER EDUCATION
90% of our Level 3 Fashion Design students who opted to continue their studies progressed to higher education.
89% of our Level 3 Fashion Design students continue to study fashion, and a majority of them stay with us at the FRA.
I didn’t know what I wanted to do in fashion, but studying such a broad course has been great to discover exactly what I want to do in the industry. You have such creative freedom with the projects. My tutors have been so helpful ad amazing, and there’s a great Wellbeing Team. I even got to present some of my work to ASOS! Coming to the Fashion Retail Academy is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made!
Ella, Level 3 Fashion Design
The Fashion Retail Academy provides the best environment for students who want to work in the fashion industry. The teachers are so caring. They’re always there to help with your work, or just to chat if you’re having a bad day. I wouldn’t be where I am if it wasn’t for the FRA. The best decision I ever made was coming here!
Cameron, Level 3 Fashion Design
Studying at the Fashion Retail Academy is really fun, and you learn what it’s actually like in the fashion industry. The teachers are amazing and let you be independent, but also give you a lot of support.
Aida , Level 3 Fashion Design
Our Level 3 Fashion Design diploma teaches you a broad range of fashion design principles, giving you a strong understanding of the essentials of clothing creation.
It's the perfect first step towards an undergraduate degree, Level 4 diploma or apprenticeship.
By choosing to study fashion design at FRA, you’ll master key practical skills such as drawing, concept design and pattern-cutting. You'll use these to create collections of work including sketchbooks, construction journals, lookbooks and concept pieces.
You'll also study digital and technical skills using industry-standard software like Adobe Creative Cloud. We’ll help you create a professional portfolio that you can use for university applications and job interviews. As a student at the FRA, you’ll have access to professional research tools like WGSN, which you can use to improve your trend-forecasting skills to inform your designs.
Alongside your creative skills, you'll develop your contextual awareness of the fashion industry with regular trips to visit galleries, museums and flagship retail stores. We’ll also explore the issues surrounding sustainability and ethical production within the industry, and the increasing importance for fashion businesses to solve these challenges.
This course is perfect if you’re a creative, visual thinker with an interest in drawing, textiles and garment design. You'll be studying alongside other fashion design students in the heart of London, with access to a wide range of industry connections and expertise.
On our fashion design course, you'll also be given additional support for your next steps including UCAS applications, whether you choose to stay with us or study at another prestigious university.
The Level 3 Fashion Design course covers:
- The Creative Process: Explore the fashion design creative process through its various stages. Understand the tasks at each stage and their role in moving a garment from concept to creative outcome.
- Developing Creative Practice: Examine the various materials, techniques and processes used across creative practice, including garment design and construction. Learn the creative skills needed to solve problems, develop outcomes and present work.
- Responding to a Set Brief: Demonstrate skills learnt so far by responding to a creative brief. Learn how to use reflective practice to show decision-making and evaluate success.
- Researching a Specialist Industry Practice: Explore all aspects of a chosen specialist industry practice within fashion, supporting personal development and assisting with future career progression.
- Specialist Technical Skills Development: Focus on in‑depth technical, practical skills and creative processes within a specialist industry practice. Explore material and production processes and learn how to explore and experiment creatively.
- Specialist Creative Outcome: Compete and present an in-depth, self-initiated project, demonstrating all the skills and knowledge developed over the course. You could create a final collection, a textile piece, a conceptual outcome or a digital magazine.
We're proud of our exceptional industry links to over 140 major brands at the FRA. All our tutors have worked in the industry, and have plenty of knowledge and experience to share.
During your fashion design course, we’ll teach you to develop a strong professional network that will support you throughout your career. You’ll also take part in projects and challenges set by brands, and receive personalised feedback on your work.
Level 3 Fashion Design Mentor Scheme
Working in small groups, we'll assign you an industry mentor during your second year. They’ll meet with you to discuss, advise and support you on your journey into industry or higher education. Your mentor will offer insight into working in a business, and will help you plan your career goals. You’ll explore routes and opportunities in employment, as well as skills and attributes that will help you take active responsibility for the direction of your career.
Previous students have worked with mentors from New Look, Zara, Bestseller and Pritch
48 Hour Challenge
These quick challenges develop your skills in time management and working to tight deadlines within a team. You’ll spend 48 hours working in small groups to create solutions to a challenge currently faced by industry. A Visiting Industry Expert will then evaluate your work, giving you valuable, personalised feedback and teaching you how the industry would react in similar circumstances.
During some of your projects, an Industry Expert will visit to give contextual direction to your work, and give you feedback on what you've created. They'll give insight and support, helping you to develop your knowledge and successfully complete your project.
Previous visiting industry experts have come from Sweaty Betty, ASOS, Diesel and PVH.
Many of our students progress into further education after finishing their Level 3 Fashion Design diploma, starting Level 4 diplomas or undergraduate degrees.
Our graduates have gone on to study womenswear or menswear design, tailoring, and design with development at prestigious universities like Central Saint Martins, London College of Fashion, and Westminster.
If you pass the Level 3 Fashion Design course with a merit or above, you'll qualify for a place on one of our undergraduate degree courses. You can also progress to one of our specialist Level 4 diplomas.
From Level 3 Fashion Design, you can also move straight into an apprenticeship or employment as a junior or assistant in a design, sample or production department. This wide-ranging course has many other career options too, including fashion journalism, pattern and textile design and creative direction.
University of the Arts London
Level 3 Diploma and Extended Diploma in Creative Practice: Art, Design and Communication
2 years, delivered over 2 days per week
This course is fully-funded for students aged 16-18
- 4 GCSEs at grade C/4 or above, including Maths and English
For non-UK qualifications, please provide an ENIC Statement of Comparability.
If you're applying from a non-English speaking country, you'll need at least 5.5 overall and in each section of IELTS test for English language
Assessment is continuous throughout the course. You must pass each unit to progress to the next. Once you have passed all units in Terms 1 and 2, you'll move to the final units in Term 3. When you complete the course, you'll be graded at either Pass, Merit or Distinction.
After completing our online form, we'll process your application and send you the outcome by post and email in 5-10 working days. We process applications in the order we receive them, and offers are made on a first-come, first-served basis.
- If you have your exam results and you meet the course's entry requirements, you'll be given an unconditional offer.
- If you don't have your results yet, your offer will be conditional on you meeting the entry requirements.
Your place on the Level 3 Fashion Design course is only secure after you have completed enrolment.
- Academic Transition Day: 1 September 2022
- Term Start Date: 5 September
- Half Term: 24 – 28 October
- End of Term: 19 December
- Winter Holidays: 19 December 2022 – 2 January 2023
- Term Start Date: 2 January 2023
- Trip Week: 20 – 24 February
- End of Term: 31 March
- Spring Holidays: 3 – 14 April
- Term Starts: 17 April
- End of Term: 30 June 2023
*Term Dates are subject to change
- Academic Transition Day (1st Year): 31 August 2023
- Academic Transition Day (2nd Year): 29 August 2023
- Term Start Date: 4 September
- End of Term: 18 December
- Winter Holidays: 18 December 2023 – 1 January 2024
- Term Start Date: 2 January 2024
- End of Term: 18 March
- Spring Holidays: 18 March - 7 April
- Term Starts: 8 April
- End of Term: 24 June 2024
*Term Dates are subject to change
From September 2024, the Fashion Retail Academy will be located at our new campus at Electra House in Moorgate, Central London.
The listed building is currently undergoing a £30 million refurbishment, created to our exact specifications.
There will be:
- 8 floors (Electra House is double the size of our current campus)
- A bigger library and more workspaces
- 35 classrooms
- Bespoke studio spaces
- 6 lecture theatres
- Dedicated fashion design wing
- IT hub and self-service laptop lockers
- "Speakeasy" student common room and on-site cafe
- 2 specialist exhibition and event spaces
- Wellness spaces and communal areas
- Discovery nook
Moorgate has excellent transport links to the rest of London and beyond, and Electra House is situated directly across from Moorgate tube station. There is a bus stop outside the building, and Liverpool Street Station is a short walk away.
Students starting their course in September 2023 will start at our Gresse Street campus and move to Electra House for their second year. We will be there to support you throughout the transition, and provide any help and guidance wherever needed.
Click here for more information about Electra House and how our new campus will benefit you.
WE’RE OFSTED OUTSTANDING
Don’t just take our word for it – Ofsted has rated us as an officially outstanding college. Their report identified six areas of excellence.
Learners develop the highest-quality, industry-relevant skills.
A rich, varied curriculum and superb learning facilities.
Teaching is of the highest quality.
Progression into employment is exceptional.
Outstanding partnerships with employers and the fashion retail industry.
The achievement of learners is very high and for adult learners is exceptional.