The Department of Fashion and Apparel Studies (FASH) prepares students to thrive in the fast-paced and dynamic fashion and apparel industry. Relevant curricula address the conceptualization, design, pre-production, planning, communication, and distribution of fashion, apparel, and related products through two undergraduate major programs and four undergraduate minors Our strengths in cutting-edge technology, global experiences, industry relationships, and mentoring throughout our programs exemplify this commitment, and contribute to the professional success of our graduates. The Fashion Design and Product Innovation (FDPI) and Fashion Merchandising and Management (FM) programs allow students to supplement their state-of-the-art education with experiential and discovery learning through study abroad, research and scholarship, internships, and field studies.
The Fashion Design and Product Innovation major prepares students to create fashion and apparel products that meet the functional, expressive, and aesthetic needs of contemporary fashion consumers. The major represents a rich curriculum which broadly focuses on the fashion and apparel industry by synthesizing research, creativity, design development, and the technical skills needed for a successful career.
The Fashion Merchandising and Management major prepares students for all aspects of fashion business management relating to planning, development, sourcing, production, distribution, and communication of fashion products in the global environment.
An Honors Degree option is available for each major. In addition, minors in Fashion History and Culture, Fashion Management, Functional Wearable Design and Sustainable Apparel and Textile Innovation, as well as a 4+1 program leading to the completion of a Bachelor of Science in Fashion Merchandising and Management and a Master of Science in Fashion and Apparel Studies, are offered.
Students who wish to transfer from another major in the University are advised to contact the Department office regarding application policies and procedures.
The Minor in Fashion History and Culture provides a unique opportunity for students to develop an understanding of the origins and evolution of dress and fashion in relation to global societies and cultures. Clothing and appearance (i.e. dress) are forms of non-verbal communication. Varying social, national, ethnic, and gender groups project their identities through their dress. When examined from both historical and contemporary perspectives, as well as through analysis of cultural differences, clothing, and appearance contribute to our understanding of the world. As an interdisciplinary subject, the development and importance of dress and fashion from pre-historic times until present day incorporates historical, economic, aesthetic, technological, social, and cultural factors that influenced clothing change.
The Fashion Management minor focuses on the business aspects of the fashion industry that provide a broad scope of related topics and give students from any discipline a foundational understanding of this complex industry. The fashion industry continues to respond and adapt to consumer preferences, technological innovations, global changes in business and other internal and external forces. Courses for the minor give students a comprehensive foundation in fashion management including product development, sustainability, fashion business, sourcing, trade and branding. Knowledge of these topics are essential for professionals working in this industry.
The minor in Functional Wearable Design engages students in interdisciplinary learning that covers key components of functional wearable design in science, technology, creativity, product design and prototyping, and user needs. Students use innovative design and interdisciplinary problem solving skills to tackle important product development problems that can provide better protection for human beings against harsh, and sometime hazardous, environmental conditions during sporting or working activities, or enhance human performance and health. This minor offers students the opportunity to take what they learn in other disciplines, beyond Fashion and Apparel Studies courses, and think more rigorously and innovatively about how to use knowledge from other fields to design functional wearable products.
The minor in Sustainable Apparel and Textile Innovation engages students in interdisciplinary learning that supports social change; rethinks the fundamental ways apparel and textile businesses and industry operate; and tackles the chemical, energy, waste, and water challenges associated with textile materials and manufacturing. This minor gives students the opportunity to take what they learn in other disciplines, beyond Fashion and Apparel Studies courses, and think more rigorously and imaginatively about how to use knowledge from other fields to impact deeply embedded social and environmental challenges.
The Fashion History and Culture, Fashion Management and Sustainable Apparel and Textile Innovation minors are open to students majoring in any academic discipline and across all colleges with one exception; FM majors are not eligible for the Fashion Management minor. Minors are awarded only to students who have applied and been admitted to the program.
Applications to be admitted into a minor are submitted on-line through UDSIS. Admission is based on the cumulative GPA of 2.0 and the completion of at least 28 credits at the University of Delaware prior to application.
The credits required for a minor may also be used to meet other degree major requirements and electives. Students seeking a minor in Fashion History and Culture, Fashion Management, Functional Wearable Design or Sustainable Apparel and Textile Innovation may not take more than six credits of the required fashion courses at another institution.
B.S. in Fashion Merchandising and Management/M.S. in Fashion and Apparel Studies 4+1
The 4+1 program allows undergraduate Fashion Merchandising and Management majors to complete the master’s degree in Fashion and Apparel Studies in half the time. By accelerating the progress of a master’s degree, students are provided with expanded opportunities to strengthen written communication skills, think critically to solve problems, work independently, and gain research experience with faculty scholars. A Master of Science in Fashion and Apparel Studies may result in expanded opportunities for career growth in fashion, apparel, retail, and related industries.
The Bachelor of Science degree in Fashion Merchandising and Management requires 124 credits. An additional 31 credits are required for the Master of Science in Fashion and Apparel Studies, including three hours of special problem research. In the 4+1 program, 12 credits are dual counted towards both B.S. and M.S. degrees. Therefore, a minimum of 143 credits are required for the 4+1 B.S./M.S. degrees. In the freshman and sophomore years and first semester of the junior year, students follow the FM curriculum as outlined in the undergraduate catalog.
Students are admitted into the 4+1 program in the junior year. During the second semester of the junior year and the senior year a minimum of 12 graduate credits at the 600 and 800 levels are completed. Upon completion of the four-year undergraduate degree, students immediately begin taking the remaining graduate credits over a one-year period.
Specific admission requirements:
- Students must be enrolled at the University of Delaware in the Department of Fashion and Apparel Studies pursuing an undergraduate major in Fashion Merchandising and Management.
- A minimum of 60 undergraduate credits and a GPA equivalent to at least 3.2 on a 4.0 scale in all prior undergraduate college-level course work.
- Students must take the GRE or GMAT; however, the GRE/GMAT is waived if a student has a 3.5 GPA or higher.
- Students are admitted with provisional status until completion of the senior year and 124 credits, whereupon they are granted regular status as graduate students.
Admission to the 4+1 program is a competitive process. Review of applicants begins October 15th of the junior year and students are officially notified by November 1. Students begin the 4+1 program in the spring of the junior year.