1 A-Level & 5 GCSEs
16-18: Fully funded. 19+: £4,220 (Loans Available)
3 Week Work Placement
STUDY VISUAL MERCHANDISING FOR FASHION
Our fashion visual merchandising course explores what it is to be a visual merchandiser, how you can drive sales through product placement and become an extension of a brand’s identity.
Throughout the course, you'll master a wide range of digital and design skills for visual display and branding. You'll learn to create dynamic physical and digital assets for omnichannel retailers, from window displays to social media content, as well as develop trend forecasting and digital design skills to support your ideas.
- Design exciting physical and digital spaces that communicate a brand's identity
- Learn to use Adobe Creative Cloud software including Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator
- Create a professional digital portfolio for job applications and interviews
IN WORK OR STUDY
85% of our students are employed or progress to higher education after completing Level 4 Visual Merchandising.
IN HIGHER EDUCATION
All of our students who opted to continue their studies progressed to higher education.
WORKING 25+ HOURS A WEEK
91% of our Level 4 Visual Merchandising students who opted to move into the industry are now working 25+ hours a week.
The Fashion Retail Academy set me up with the perfect skills I needed for the fashion industry, and I made friends for life. It was a fab year!
Brianna , Level 4 Visual Merchandising alumni and Visual Stylist at M&S
My experience at the Fashion Retail Academy was a game changer. It opened so many doors to me, and now I work for Alexander McQueen!
John, Level 4 Visual Merchandising alumni and Visual Merchandiser at Alexander McQueen
My year at the Fashion Retail Academy has been the most beneficial and enjoyable year of my life! It has given me the confidence, knowledge and experience I need for a career in Visual Merchandising.
Jade, Level 4 Visual Merchandising
In order to be successful in today’s retail environment, brands must reach customers through many different channels and platforms. Consumers want a seamless brand experience, whether they’re shopping online or in-store, reading an email or browsing social media.
In this creative, varied and dynamic course, you'll develop the fundamental skills for communicating a brand’s identity and values visually, learning how a modern brand uses physical and digital platforms to reach its target audience.
Level 4 Visual Merchandising for Fashion is a comprehensive course that teaches you key skills across all areas of visual merchandising, spatial design and branding practices. You’ll explore the design process from concept to execution, developing new and exciting ways to inspire customers in both online and in-store environments.
We’ll teach you how to design inspiring and dynamic visual displays, shop windows and mannequins. You’ll also learn to use the Adobe Creative Cloud software used by brands across the industry, including Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign. You’ll discover how to create branded industry documents that excite customers and increase sales, including planograms, social media content and email newsletters.
Throughout the course, you’ll also investigate the current retail environment, exploring new trends in sustainability, technology and consumer behaviour and analysing their impact on the industry.
Using the work you create during the year, you'll design a professional digital portfolio. This will give you a competitive edge when applying for industry roles, and help your application stand out to hiring managers.
The Level 4 Visual Merchandising for Fashion course covers:
- Fashion Retail Store Concepts: Learn how retail architecture contributes to a successful brand image. Explore how physical spaces are manipulated and managed to create ambience and “theatre” in-store, highlighting specific stock and driving sales.
- Designing and Installing Window Displays for Fashion Retail: Investigate the aesthetic value of window displays. Learn to communicate the image and ideals of a brand visually and maximise sales. Understand the core concepts of window design including colour, graphics, lighting and styling products.
- Fashion Retail Branding: Discover how visual merchandising is used to support brand identity across physical and online retail environments. Learn to communicate branding through retail and shop floor design. Develop skills in typography, logo design, layout and digital image manipulation.
- Contextual Studies for Fashion Retail: Explore the fashion retail industry as a whole and learn the historic, cultural and contemporary influences that have impacted it.
- Preparation for Progression in Fashion Retail: Learn how to make the most of the skills and knowledge gained after graduating. Develop teamwork and presentation skills.
- Individual Negotiated Fashion Retail Project: Create a personal project through a mixture of directed and self-study. Improve research, self-evaluation and written communication skills.
With links to over 140 major brands in the industry, we help our students to develop a strong professional network to support their future careers.
All our tutors have previously worked in the industry meaning that our students can benefit from real-world expertise and experiences.
Our industry partners set live tasks and briefs, reflecting current challenges and opportunities the industry faces. These challenges will help you to develop valuable professional skills.
VISITING INDUSTRY EXPERTS
Visiting Industry Experts (VIEs) from top brands in the industry will deliver regular classes and lectures throughout your course. They'll set projects and tasks that reflect the current challenges and opportunities faced by the industry, offering you the chance to develop practical and professional skills.
VIEs will provide realistic feedback on your work, showing how their brand may react in a real-life setting. This helps to provide context to your studies, putting theoretical knowledge into practice. You'll also develop strong time management, team building and prioritisation skills through these projects.
Previous projects have been set by retailers including Alexander McQueen and H&M.
THREE-WEEK work placement
Level 4 students have the opportunity to complete a three-week industry work placement during their course. You'll be assigned an industry manager and be set tasks to complete in order to develop your understanding of a particular job role in the fashion industry.
You may be working remotely or in an office, alone or as part of team. In some cases, you'll be asked to work across multiple departments in a business. These placements are designed to help you develop professional and practical skills, providing you with valuable experience in order to boost your CV.
Previous students have completed placements with Fortnum & Mason, Next, John Lewis, Whistles and Harvey Nichols.
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.
After graduating Level 4, you’ll be ready to progress straight into an entry-level role in fashion.
85% of our Level 4 Fashion Visual Merchandising students are in employment or further education within 6 months of finishing their course at the FRA.
This course prepares you for a role in a brand’s in-store or online visual merchandising team. You could also move into similar sectors and become a prop maker or creative assistant.
All our Level 4 specialist higher Diplomas come with our Job Guarantee.
We design our courses alongside our industry partners to teach you the skills and attributes you need to secure a job. So, if you’re not offered one within six months of completing your course, we’ll refund your course fees in full.
This offer applies to students who are paying privately or using the Advanced Learner Loan to fund their studies. If you secured a loan to pay for your course, we will not refund your loan interest.
See our Terms & Conditions for our full eligibility criteria.
University of the Arts London
Level 4 Diploma for Visual Display and Branding for Fashion Retail
1 year, delivered over 2 days per week
- Fully-funded for students aged 18
- £4,220 per year for students aged 19+ - Advanced Learner Loans are available
- 1 A-level or the equivalent Level 3 qualification
- 5 GCSEs 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
The course is 100% coursework via termly assignments that measure your knowledge and understanding.
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 4 Visual Merchandising for Fashion 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: 31 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
Motel Rocks Website Design Mock-up
Ssense Digital Window Display
Jacquemus Re-Brand Digital Concept Board
Vivienne Westwood Customer Profile Moodboard
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.