Textile Sciences and Technology

Textile science and technology involves the creation, design, use and distribution of cloth and other similar materials. Learn about related degree programs, areas of study, career options and salary info for the field.

Are Textile Sciences and Technology for Me?

Career Overview

Textile sciences and technology programs can teach you about cloth design, production, distribution and the use of fabrics in the textile and apparel industries. It combines the study of technology and science with courses in business management, history, art and design. With a degree in this area of study, you might get a job as a textile testing analyst or quality assurance specialist. You might also work in textile design, sales, product development or management.

Areas of Specialization

Although textiles are often associated with the apparel industry, many textile science and textile technology degree programs and concentrations focus on textile applications in other arenas, such as architecture, medicine, aerospace, sports and the automotive industry. You might use your textiles degree to get a job that involves developing safer airbags, improving bulletproof vests or developing state-of-the-art human prosthetics. You might also focus on producing textiles to be used in fashion design or come up with the next big thing in furniture upholstery.

Employment and Salary Information

You can train for most entry-level textile production positions on the job; many employers don't even require you to have a high school diploma. However, more advanced positions involving textile sciences and technology, particularly textile engineering or production management jobs, typically require at least a bachelor's degree. Some jobs in textile management or research require a master's or doctorate.

According to Payscale.com, textile designers earned a median annual salary of $50,565 in April 2014. Textile design managers earned $78,395 in the same month. (www.payscale.com).

How Can I Work in Textile Sciences and Technology?

Undergraduate Programs

Several colleges and universities offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs in textile sciences or textile technology. Degree programs in apparel, textiles and merchandising may also include courses in textile science and technology. Some textile technology bachelor's programs allow you to customize your degree with a specialization in textile design, medical textiles, or nonwovens science and technology.

Graduate Programs

After earning your bachelor's degree in textile science or textile technology, you could go on to pursue a graduate degree in textiles. Fields of study that can lead to a Master of Science include textiles, textile engineering or textile chemistry. At the doctoral level, you might pursue a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Textile Technology Management or a Ph.D. in Fiber and Polymer Science.

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