Fashion Design Degree Program and Training Facts

A degree in fashion design can help you develop the skills necessary to make clothing and accessories and pursue a career in the field. Continue reading to find out about fashion design degree programs, including common topics of study. Schools offering Fashion Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Fashion Design Degree Programs Are Available?

An Associate of Applied Science, a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Fine Arts are the most common degrees awarded in fashion design. These programs are offered mostly through art and design, community and technical colleges. If you intend on continuing your education, graduate fashion and design degree programs are available. Online options are primarily available in fashion merchandising and not in fashion design.

Degree Levels Associate's, bachelor's, and graduate degrees
Common Courses Tailoring, fashion illustration, clothing design, patternmaking, graphic design
Median Salary (2018) $72,720* (for all fashion designers)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Could I Learn?

Most of the fashion design curriculum helps develop a professional portfolio. Fashion design programs help develop skills such as sewing, tailoring, drawing, patternmaking and merchandising. Classes in fashion illustration, graphic design, model drawing, costume design, adult clothing design, children clothing design and fashion production are common. Computer software programs such as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator may also be taught. Some programs offer the chance to apply your education and participate in a fashion show where you can show off the clothing you created in a competitive runway setting.

For continued skill development, you could pursue an internship at a major designer firm. O*NET OnLine ( states that fur designers are a recognized outlet for apprenticeships in fashion design. Additionally, you can also enter a graduate program where there's more discussion of current and potential trends and courses on production and developing your own professional business.

What Can I Do After Graduation?

An education in fashion design could lead to a career as a costume designer, clothing designer, fashion designer, product developer or design director. Like most careers based on creativity, the job field is very competitive. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expects a three percent increase in job openings for fashion designers between 2016 and 2026 ( This increase relies on public interest in more inexpensive trendy clothing. The BLS states that as of May 2018, the median salary for fashion designers was $72,720.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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