Skip Navigation
*To search for student contact information, login to FlashLine and choose the "Directory" icon in the FlashLine masthead (blue bar).

Fashion Design - B.A., B.F.A. PDFDownload to print

College of the Arts

School of Fashion Design and Merchandising

226 Rockwell Hall
Tel: 330-672-3010
Fax: 330-672-3772


The Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in Fashion Design integrate conceptual, technical and production design knowledge and skills, leading to a synthesis of the design process from concept to production. These processes include color, design and trend research; technical sketching and rendered illustration; pattern-making and garment construction; analysis of appropriate fit and fabric selection; and the ability to communicate specifications for production using industry standards appropriate to specific markets.

The B.A. and B.F.A. degrees in Fashion Design prepare students for professional careers by developing technical competency, creative/independent problem solving and conceptual understanding necessary for the challenges of a career in the creative industries. Students in both degree programs will be required to develop portfolios for presentation at industry interviews and are prepared to be strongly competitive for any entry-level design position in the industry.

Prior to senior year, fashion design students will select to complete either the B.A. or B.F.A. degree.

The B.A. degree in Fashion Design promotes an emphasis on the diversity of studio practice and liberal art experiences. Students have the option to select coursework offerings to gain expertise in a variety of specialties that connect directly to fashion design, such as wearable technology applications, garment knitting, illustration and/or accessory design.

The B.F.A. degree in Fashion Design engages students in a focused-study thesis project (collection development) as a capstone experience that results in submitting their collection for formal review by faculty and industry designer-critics, followed by public presentation in a fashion venue.

Study Abroad/Away Opportunities:

  • The School of Fashion Design and Merchandising supports multiple study abroad/away experiences, including opportunities to study for a semester at its NYC studio and Florence campus, as well as through collaborative partnership programs with the Paris American Academy, Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Regent's University in London. For more information visit the School of Fashion Design and Merchandising website or contact the Office of Global Education.
Career Opportunities

Fashion designers held about 22,700 jobs in 2008. About 31 percent of fashion designers worked for apparel, piece goods, and notions merchant wholesalers; and 13 percent worked for apparel manufacturers. Many others were self employed. Employment of fashion designers tends to be concentrated in regional fashion centers. In 2008, the highest numbers of fashion designers were employed in New York and California. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Admission Requirements

Freshman Students: Applicants must have at least a 3.000 cumulative grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) and a minimum ACT composite score of 21 (or a SAT combined critical reading+math score of 980).

Courses for fashion design typically begin in the fall of each academic year, and the curriculum requires eight semesters of study; therefore, students admitted to the fashion design program can expect at least four years of study from the time they begin the coursework in their major.

Transfer Students: To be considered for admission, transfer applicants need at least a 2.750 cumulative GPA based on 24 or more semester hours of college-level coursework at an accredited institution. Those students meeting this GPA requirement but with less than 24 semester hours will be evaluated as new freshmen.

Students who do not meet the academic criteria for admission into the Fashion Design degree program will not be accepted and may be eligible for admission to the Pre-Fashion Design and Merchandising non-degree major (PFDM).

Students who do not meet the academic criteria may initiate the process for declaring the fashion design major (B.A. Fashion Design) after completing at least 12 hours of non developmental coursework at Kent State University with a cumulative GPA of 2.750.

For more information about admission criteria for transfer, transitioning and former students, please visit the admissions website.

Graduation Requirements

Credits required for graduation:
B.A. Fashion Design - 120 credit hours; minimum 39 upper-division credit hours.
B.F.A. Fashion Design - 124 credit hours; minimum 39 upper-division credit hours.

Minimum 2.500 GPA in the major and 2.500 GPA overall required for graduation. Minimum 2.500 GPA overall required for internship.

Program Learning Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the fashion industry.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of fashion products and services.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of fashion markets.
  4. Demonstrate skills appropriate for designing within the fashion industry.
  5. Demonstrate an understanding of technology applicable to design within the fashion industry.
  6. Articulate conceptual and critical thinking applicable to design in the fashion industry.
  7. Demonstrate their knowledge of the fashion design industry through visual, oral, and written forms.
  8. Demonstrate research processes and practices employed in the fashion design industry.
  9. Demonstrate their knowledge of the fashion design industry through reflective experiential learning.

National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD)