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Fashion Curriculum

Course of Study

Fashion Design Major

42 hours including FH 101, 105, 201, 206, 251, 260, 300, 301, 315, 419, 420, 429, 452 and 475. Students who do not select the F.I.T. Track only take FH 419, 420 and 429. Recommended electives: BU 125, 220, FH 325, 475 and 488 F.I.T. opportunity.

Fashion Merchandising Major
42 hours including FH 101, 105, 201, 206, 220, PR 222, 251, 301, 305, 332, 338, 400, 452 and 475. Recommended electives: FH 260, 300, 325, 475, 488 and F.I.T. opportunity.

F.I.T. Track Option
Students in Fashion Design and Merchandising may choose to spend their third year at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. Students who choose the F.I.T. Track are responsible for providing their own room, board and transportation while in New York and seeing that all official transcripts of their completed work in New York are mailed to the Registrar's Office at Ursuline College. All work in both fashion design and merchandising management is considered enrichment elective credit. Students receive an Associate in Applied Science Degree from the Fashion Institute of Technology upon graduation from the home institution; Ursuline College.

In order to be eligible for a year of studies at the Fashion Institute of Technology a student majoring in Fashion Design or Fashion Merchandising must:

  • Complete 60-64 credit hours
  • Be nominated by the faculty of the fashion department
  • Be officially accepted by the Fashion Institute of Technology
  • Have a GPA of 3.0 or higher

Audit Sheet

Fashion Design Major Audit Sheet

Fashion Design Minor Audit Sheet

Fashion Merchandising Major Audit Sheet


Fashion Merchandising Minor Audit Sheet


Course Descriptions


FH 101
Apparel Construction (3)
The development of basic skills and techniques in apparel construction. Students become familiar with the basics of machine sewing and multi-thread serger, master the standard range of stitches, master the seam types, learn fitting and construction techniques used in the industry.

FH 105 Textiles: Concepts and Principles (3)
This course offers a basic study of natural fibers (cotton, flax, silk, wool), yarns, fabric construction, coloring processes and finishing techniques. Emphasis is placed on the practical application of this knowledge in judging performance and in the proper use and care of fabrics used in the apparel industry. Students will use the Ursuline College Historic Costume Study Collection as a research resource in fiber identification.

FH 106 Textile Performance (3)
The methods used to test fabrics: wet and physical testing, fabric strength and durability, color fastness, aesthetic appearance, and dimensional stability. Students have the opportunity to use the Ursuline College Historic Costume Study Collection for testing performance.  

FH 201 Figure/Flats/Portfolio (3)
Introduces the concept of sketching designs and actual garments in the flat format rather than on the fashion figure. Emphasis is on developing flat sketches used for designing, presentations, merchandising a line, spec sheets and portfolio development. 

FH 206 Intermediate Apparel (3)
A reinforcement of the industry skills acquired in FH 101; practice in detailed techniques for construction of apparel.
Prerequisite: FH 101

FH 220 Beyond Design: The Synergy of Product Development (3)
This course is designed to introduce the student to apparel product development and Global manufacturing. Students will explore all steps essential to developing apparel, such as, researching trends, establishing means of production and presenting collections to meet the needs of the merchandise buyers. Through studying the Product Development Cycle, students will discern the ways in which product development is not limited only to apparel but other sources of merchandise as well. Students are required to complete three creative projects designed to enhance constructive and authentic knowledge of topics and issues presented over the course of the semester.

FH 251 Costume and Fashion (3)
A history of the development of costume and fashion will be explored from its simple and practical beginnings to the growth of the multibillion-dollar global industry that it is today. The survey will mirror the development of civilization from ancient Egypt to the present focusing on trends in clothing style, fabric, accessories, and footwear. The Ursuline College Historic Costume Study Collection will be used to show the relationship between 20th century American costume and fashion. A final project will recreate a period costume in half-scale miniature.

FH 260 Fashion Illustration (3)
The human figure takes on unique and somewhat exaggerated proportions in the art of fashion illustration. The class develops the student's ability to execute drawings of the clothed figure in a variety of angles and poses which show each garment to its advantage. By learning different media, students will be able to develop their creativity and enhance illustrations skills.

FH 300 Color and Presentation Boards (3)
Students learn and understand presentation boards and their use in presenting trend forecasting and creative design lines for the fashion industry. Students develop an understanding of design board layout, how to plan the elements emphasizing proportion and group lines and how to work with fabric swatches selected for a collection.

FH 301 Computer Aided Design (3)
Introduction and application of computer-aided design with emphasis on training; opportunity to experiment with image creation techniques, repeat patterns and mirror techniques. Examination of the linkages between textile and apparel production and the facilitation of these linkages through computer-aided design training. No previous experience on computer techniques is necessary.

FH 305 Branding (3)
Course provides students with an understanding of methodologies and strategies used for building and maintaining brands and their identity within a contemporary corporate environment. Visual systems are explored to develop culturally relevant messages and images, thus building sustainable brand recognition. Projects focus on how organizations use visual communications to express their core values and impact consumer perceptions of their brand.

FH 315 Patternmaking Fundamentals (3)
This course emphasizes development of technical patternmaking skills and draping. Principles of flat pattern, draping methods and advanced sewing techniques are used in the development of original design ideas. Students will create a basic sloper set, create muslin samples, practice ASTM standards, grading, marker making and sewing samples for industry standards.
Prerequisites: FH 101, FH 206; completion of all preceding requiremets

FH 325 Social and Psychological Influences of Clothing(3)
An examination of basic topics and ideas that contribute to an understanding of clothing and human behavior. Exploration of the social psychology of clothing that draws from different disciplines or areas of study (for example, anthropology, consumer behavior, cultural studies, psychology and sociology).

FH 332 Fashion Merchandising and Buying (3)
Theory and study of the various steps in the fashion merchandising business. Investigation into the inherent problems and challenges in starting a small business, with emphasis on an organizational plan for individual entrepreneurship in textiles, designing, manufacturing and retailing.

FH 338 Fashion Show Production (3)
Television video and fashion show production through the study of budgets, runway design, commentary, and fashion coordination of movement, lighting, and music. Students in this class gain the creative knowledge and experience necessary to help produce a successful fashion show. Individual in-class projects stimulate the students' creative ability to choose the basic theme and carry this theme throughout an entire production. The final project is the annual spring fashion show jointly created from start to finish by the entire class and the faculty.

FH 400 Visual Merchandising and Display (3)
This course will introduce students to the field of visual merchandising and display with emphasis on all aspects of visual merchandising and display, from classic techniques to the most avant-garde developments. The course will use textual and visual examples, on how to add interest to window and interior displays, optimizing the retailer's image and the target market.

FH 419 Draping (3)
Basic draping principles are introduced through demonstrations as a method to provide three-dimensional form to original design concepts. Creative designs and interpretations of the basic and complex shapes are explored and developed. Sketches are submitted for a faculty critique along with fabric samples. A final project of original designs will be executed in fabric to learn how a collection is created. Students showcase their work at the annual fashion show.
Prerequisites: FH 101, 200, 206, 260, 300, 315 and 316

FH 420 Flat Pattern (3)
While learning industry standards, students will enhance their abilities to draft patterns by mastering the flat pattern method. Instruction will be given in dart manipulations, drafting basic style lines, skirts and sleeves. Sketches are submitted for a faculty critique along with fabric samples. Design concepts will be executed in muslin incorporating the flat pattern method of fashion design. A final project of original designs will be executed in fabric to learn how a bolection is created. Students showcase their work at the annual fashion show.
Prerequisites: FH 101, 200, 206, 260, 300, 315, 316 and 419

FH 429 Senior Fashion Studio (3)
This is a class in advanced draping. Specific areas to be covered include designing production patterns for the fashion market, principles of fitting, and internet research. Sketches are submitted for a faculty critique along with fabric samples. A collection of design concepts will be executed in muslin incorporating draping, construction, and finishing. A final project of original designs will be executed in fabric to create a collection. Students showcase their work at the annual fashion show.
Prerequisites: FH 101, 200, 206, 260, 300, 315, 316, 419 and 420

FH 451 Departmental Seminar (3)
Research and discussion of current career advances and opportunities in various areas within the constantly changing fields of fashion design and merchandising.

FH 452 Senior Symposium: Hot Topics (3)
Continued research and discussion of current career advances and opportunities in various areas within the fields of fashion design and merchandising. An off-campus industry experience for qualified students to provide the pre-professional experience related to the major. Senior culminating course.

FH 461, 462 Independent Study (1-3, 1-3)
Directed study of a particular topic not covered in the listed Fashion courses. Approval of department chair required.

FH 475 Academic Internship (1-3)
An off-campus industry experience for qualified students to provide the pre-professional experience related to the student's major. Interns conduct assessments, identify learning objectives and develop lifelong career planning skills. Strongly recommended for both majors.

FH 488 Special Topics (1-3)
Fashion trips to Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, New York City, Toronto, or Cleveland. Guests lecture on fashion current topics.

FH 199, 299, 399, 499 External Learning Assessment (credit varies)
Measurable and verifiable learning which has occurred outside of the traditional classroom. Numerical designation indicates level of proficiency in the topic. Courses for which there is an exact Ursuline College equivalent are listed by the appropriate numerical designation. "PL" is listed before all course titles for which credit is granted through external learning assessment.