Course Overview

Attendance
UK/EU Fees £12,000 *
International Fees £12,000 *
Alumni Discount See details
Duration 1 year

* Price per academic year

Course summary

This course will equip you with the strategic decision-making, leadership and problem-solving skills you will need to become an entrepreneurial and visionary fashion business leader of the future. It continues the University’s fashion tradition of a commitment to excellence in developing highly effective, talented and committed professional fashion graduates.

Working closely with fashion industry professionals, role models and mentors, you will receive a relevant, well-grounded, high-quality education and skill base that will enable you to have a wider, clearer understanding of the business you are already involved in. The course offers inside knowledge of industry strategies and cultures on a global basis, combined with key business skills and essential fashion industry management knowledge.

This course equips you for a business management career in the domestic or international fashion industry. Delivered by a teaching team with a wide range of experience both in industry and academia, the course offers an innovative and relevant fashion business curriculum that focuses on preparing your entry into senior roles in business and management within the industry.

Course structure

Core modules, semester 1

The fashion business dynamics and its fast-shifting product sourcing require an adaptable attitude to spot business opportunities emerging around the world. Building profitable relationships with partners and suppliers and balancing costs and risks are key challenges. To transform an idea into a commercial product involves a complex route: this module is designed to provide an overall understanding of how to manage a fashion business from concept to customer. It will explore a variety of perspectives on global product sourcing and global supply chain issues with the aim of preparing you for the challenges of developing and maximising a strategy whilst still responding efficiently and effectively to constant changes in consumer demand.

This course aims to provide you with a thorough grounding in the theory and practice of managing creative people in organisations, at both strategic and operational levels. It also aims to develop an awareness of the major practical and theoretical dilemmas among individuals, groups and organisations, and to place managerial practices into an historical and international perspective, highlighting both traditional and emerging issues and their importance to develop a sustainable competitive advantage. This module will acknowledge the challenge of managing creative individuals in the fashion business and managing diversity and conflict which may arise. Through case studies and in class group work you will examine issues and challenges inherent in recruitment, placement and retention of creative teams and the growth and compensation via human resource management.

As organisations evolve globally, leaders face new opportunities, risks and demands that challenge and stretch their abilities in the context of leading, managing and communicating with people of different cultures and management structures as well. Leadership in a diverse and multicultural environment provides a culturally- centred perspective that allows organisational leaders the opportunity to attend to the influence of culture. This module will help you find examples of how multicultural awareness can make your leadership task easier and promotes an organisational culture that is more satisfying to both individuals and their leaders by embracing and celebrating differences.

The module covers the theories, models, tools and methodologies used in the field of strategic management specifically within the fashion business. It aims to enhance your ability to play an effective role in developing, implementing and monitoring strategy within a business in the fashion or fashion-related industries. The module especially aims to help you develop a critical awareness of the management of creativity and design within a global context. Fashion enterprises at every level inherently enjoy advantages as well as face the vulnerabilities of the market conditions. This unit opens windows into strategic and creative thinking, analytical evaluation, and business strategy development as well as the decision-making process. The business environment is constantly changing and this affects the market condition, business structure, strategy and style.

Core modules, semester 2

The Finance and Entrepreneurship module combines theory and practical knowledge of finance in the fashion industry. It also provides a practical, real-world approach that presents the common financial problems (and solutions) entrepreneurs often face especially in the fashion world. With the increasingly critical role played by finance and financial management in the success of global business, a solid grounding in the principles and techniques of finance is essential for a successful business venture. The module is designed to develop your understanding of the core financial aspects of business as well as entrepreneurship through the preparation, interpretation, use and analysis of strategic financial information in the context of an understanding of the strategic need for the survival of global business. This module represents a mixture of financial and management accounting, corporate finance and risk management. The principles and concepts underlying each of these subject areas are examined with particular emphasis being placed upon their practical application in the international fashion industry.

With the competition in the fashion business at its fiercest, it is imperative that companies understand and develop successful and effective marketing strategies for product development and brands for the mass market as well as the luxury goods market. This module will stimulate critical and intellectual skills and allow you to explore the challenges of developing fashion marketing strategy, to include an understanding of the fashion market, the marketing mix, the consumer, how to make appropriate product adaptations to meet consumer demands, developing strategy to protect and ensure effective intellectual property protection for a brand. The module also aims to help you effectively develop and overcome challenges in the marketing environment in order to successfully understand how to penetrate new markets and manage brands in order to balance a competitive advantage with profitability in the fashion business.

This module will include:

  • an understanding of the global fashion market
  • the global marketing mix
  • the consumer
  • how to make appropriate product adaptations to meet consumer demands
  • developing the strategies to protect and ensure effective intellectual property protection for a brand
  • ensuring and effectively developing and overcoming the challenges to successfully understand how to penetrate the market in order to balance a competitive advantage with profitability in the global fashion market

One of the fundamental elements of the Fashion industry is that it is producing something new every season or is reinventing itself. This is clearly evident in the constant change in the products produced. Change in the processes and organisation of the industry are also constantly occurring – they are less evident but are equally important. Globalisation of the industry and significant technological advances has led to an increased variety and velocity of change much greater than in the past. Managers in the industry today need to be alert to these changes and know how to manage them. These changes can be initiated by new product or process innovations or can be forced upon the industry by external factors. The effective management of any type of change is essential for a business to survive and requires deep understanding of the impact change can have on the people and processes within the business. This module looks at how a fashion business can successfully innovate and how the changes need to be managed to be successful. This module will be discovering and then analysing the theory and practice of the management of change and innovation.

The Fashion Business Management Project builds on the skills and experience derived from the previous modules. You will be provided with the opportunity to apply all of the knowledge gained during the programme into a major project to address fashion business issues and challenges while adding to the body of professional practice and theoretical literature. Supervised by a faculty member in collaboration with yourself and a potential fashion industry representative, the Fashion Business Management Project is recognised by graduates as one of the most rewarding and empowering experiences of the entire programme.

Live project work

Over the last five years, students on this course have benefitted from developing projects to a live brief in their Marketing and Innovation modules.

Students are briefed by a brand owner or founder and they develop original research for them, which has in some cases resulted in work placements and prizes for the best students.

Brands involved have ranged from sportswear to children’s wear and accessories as well as men’s and women’s apparel.

Student involvement in these live projects provides an extra dimension and insight for them to realise the challenges and opportunities of owning a fashion brand. How to maximise this and turn their ideas into realistic strategies and a potentially successful direction for a brand.

Entry Requirements

Entry to the course is based on a combination of formal qualifications and significant industry experience. You should have a First or Upper Second Class Honours in your first degree in any subject, as well as a minimum of two years’ working experience in the fashion business or marketing. If English is your second language you should have an IELTS score of 6.5 with 6.0 in each element.

View more information about our entry requirements and the application process.

Entry to the course is based on a combination of formal qualifications and significant industry experience. You should have a First or Upper Second Class Honours in your first degree in any subject, as well as a minimum of two years’ working experience in the fashion business or marketing. If English is your second language you should have an IELTS score of 6.5 with 6.0 in each element.

 

More information

Careers

The course is designed to attract applicants with a recognised design, retail management or distribution/manufacturing background. With guidance from the academics and professionals in this field it is anticipated that you will go on to enter senior management positions and move up the career ladder.

Our alumni can be found working in senior positions all over the world in many fashion roles and include such well-known brands such as Aldo, Dior, Dunhill, Harrods, Hermes, Louis Vuitton, Marks and Spencer, Nordstrom, Prada Hong Kong and many more.

Several of our alumni, have also gone on to study at PhD level and to further academic research. Others have set up their own business or successfully taken over a family run business. 

The idea of a Fashion Business Management MA was formulated in discussion with industry leaders. Building on the success of our Fashion Merchandise Management courses and in particular the close collaboration with industry we spoke extensively to senior fashion executives. Many felt that although doing an MA in Fashion Business Management would not ensure promotion, potential candidates who learn how to apply the knowledge they gain from the course can become leaders who can inspire others. Those candidates need to understand the values and culture of the industry and, most importantly, recognise the difference between information and knowledge and have clearly defined goals.

This support from industry is important both for you as a student and for the future development and relevance of the MA. We will continue to foster and maintain these important links with the fashion industry, and ensure that our Fashion Business Management MA stays at the forefront of education for the future leaders in the fashion industry. We will also continue to invite many prestigious and eminent guest speakers from the industry to participate on all the modules, ensuring that the course remains relevant, informed and up-to-date with current industry practice.

Our Career Development Centre has just been shortlisted for the Best University Careers Service in the National Undergraduate Employability Awards for 2017.

With a growing network of over 3,000 employers around the world and a team of experienced careers consultants, we are here to help you succeed.

In 2015–16, we helped over 1,500 students find work placements across a range of sectors, with 250 employers attending 14 on-campus skills and careers fairs.

As a Westminster student, you’ll have access to our services throughout your studies and after you graduate.

We can help you:

  • find work placements related to your course
  • find part-time/vacation, placement and graduate jobs, including voluntary experience
  • find international opportunities to enhance your employability
  • market yourself effectively to employers
  • write better CVs and application forms
  • develop your interview and enterprise skills
  • plan your career with our careers consultants
  • meet employers and explore your career options at our employer fairs, careers presentations and networking events throughout the year

Find out more about the Career Development Centre.

Facilities

Fees and Funding

UK and EU tuition fee: £12,000 (Price per academic year)

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

As well as tuition fee loans, there is a range of funding available to help you fund your studies.

Find out about postgraduate student funding options.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

Additional costs

See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

International tuition fee: £12,000 (Price per academic year)

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

Find out about funding for international students.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

Additional costs

See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

Course Location

The vibrant home of Westminster School of Media, Arts and Design, the Harrow Campus offers one of the richest portfolios of creative industry research and learning in Europe. The recent redevelopment of the campus has seen the creation of fluid, informal learning spaces, dedicated project and gallery spaces and a revamped library. For more details, visit our Harrow Campus page.

More information

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