What do you think is the future of Fashion education?
I have been considering this lately in relation to the different methods that individual learn by and the opportunities available to them. With the plethora of online sewing tutorials, blogs and Youtube videos, individuals at home, what ever age can pick up new skills and abilities. These can be from home enthusiasts, professionals, mini courses or blogs from sewing schools or publications. But what if you want a degree? Do we all still value the degree?
I have been looking into the different education providers and the boom in fashion courses that are available today. The Business of Fashion blog wrote a post in 2015 entitled ‘Is Fashion Education Selling a False Dream?’ where they have included their own surveys and rankings of education providers and discussed questions such as is there enough guidance after students courses finish? And are there a sufficient number of jobs for learners graduating with the desire to be a ‘fashion designer’? Also in this article it is discussed how fashion education has grown and diversified in the last decade, I find this interesting especially with the development of private colleges that sit alongside universities in offering education and training.
So let’s think for the future, could Fashion education ever be from distance learning? How could Fashion courses use technology to the advantage within the study of our subject? Currently the courses on, for example, the Open University do not cover Fashion or any construction or design based disciplines. The answer to the question I have posed, I do not know, considering my students: especially the younger ones, they need much guidance and work ethic instilled at the start of their studies. Also, learners need so many materials and facilities for the creative arts if they did not have access to these at home or the space to work in it would impact on learning.
This week The Chancellor announced as part of the budget that it is planned all mainstream Schools in the UK are to become Academies. Education is changing! How will fashion courses develop, will it be more of the business range providers running courses? Or will we see the Universities extending to global centres and expanding their brands overseas?
Last week I sat down with one of my students to help her pick two courses apart in order for her to select her first and second university choices. She was very confused with the difference between a Fashion Design and Fashion Promotion courses. I find students consider progression when they identify a professional pathway. However how can students be guided through the vast array of courses with clarity of what to select?
What is your opinion upon the developments within Fashion education?