MA Costume Design for Performance

University of the Arts London

Program Description

MA Costume Design for Performance

University of the Arts London

The costume design course aims to develop confident and experimental practitioners who will push the boundaries of the subject of costume beyond its established traditional role.

Content and Structure

The course aims to develop confident and experimental practitioners who will push the boundaries of the subject of costume beyond its established role. Taught largely on a one to one basis, by international practitioners, experienced teachers and senior researchers, this MA will nurture your creative ideas about costume and performance.

You will design, realise and experiment with costume based performance ideas that enable you to define your inpidual voice in relation to contemporary culture and practice, while responding visually to the relevant performance context.

Beyond the understanding of performance and the role of character creation through costume, the study of Costume Design at MA level allows you to locate your practice within the wider realms of contemporary culture and art, as well as within the relevant dramatic, social and philological contexts.

The relationship between drawing, practical realisation and performance, is central to the way design is approached: ideas are developed on paper and through movement, as well as through pattern cutting, textile printing, dyeing and surface manipulation. Practical experimentation is achieved through access to the extensive technical facilities available within the college, expanding knowledge of the uses of CAD, tailoring, print, knit and embroidery within costume. The costume studio in John Prince's Street is well equiped to enable students to develop their ideas into realisation, and expert technical support is provided for students on a weekly basis.

Course Structure

Full Time 15 months level 7 180 credits

Flexible up to 5 years level 7 180 credits

Full Time mode

Term One:

Costume for Live Performance (40 credits)

Research Methods (20 credits)

Term Two:

Costume for Film (40 units)

Collaborative Unit (20 credits)

Term Three:

Masters Project (60 credits)

Flexible Mode

The same units are taught at the same times in the year as on the full time mode but you can complete the 20 credit units in any order and you have the option of taking longer to complete the course. You may build credits towards a Postgraduate Certificate, a Postgraduate Diploma, or a Masters. If you get offered a place on the Flexible route your Course Leader will advise you on the best possible combination of units and when best to take them.

Please note that 120 credits must be successfully completed before the Masters Project is started.

The Masters must be completed within five years.

Travelling across London

The renowned London College of Fashion library is at our John Prince’s Street site, and you will need to travel to this site, and possibly others, during your course to use the library, which is open seven days a week in term time, and for tuition and special events.

This school offers programs in:
  • English


MA Costume for Performance graduates have begin to practice as designers in both devised and text based performance, sometimes taking the collaborative performance work initiated during the course further. As a result their work has been seen not only in London and on tour, but in major national and international festivals, including Prague Quadrennial, Spill Festival and Edinburgh Fringe.

Graduates have also found employment as assistant designers and costume supervisors, whilst others, whose technical dexterity has proven a particular strength, have began to forge a path for themselves as experts in specific technical areas of costume, such as, pattern cutting, surface textiles, print and dye or fabricated, sculptural costumes.

The course also prepares students for work with contemporary visual artists. Graduates have found work with artists, whose work borders on performance, such as Lucy Orta, or involves textile and surface manipulation, like Tracy Emin.

Master's graduates have an acknowledged advantage in the employment market, obtaining work in a wide range of vocational and academic fields related to costume. Graduates will be in a position to gain employment as innovators within the fields of costume design. The MA also provides an excellent preparation for higher level research degrees (MPhil or PhD), with an increasing number of graduates undertaking research in fashion related subjects, in practice or theory.

LCF Careers

LCF Careers provides a comprehensive career management service supporting our students to become informed and self-reliant individuals able to plan and manage their own careers.

Cost & Fees

Home/EU Fee

£8,000 (Full Time)

£900 per 20 credit unit (Flexible) £2,700 per 60 credit unit (Flexible) Please note that the fees payable on the Flexible route will be those of the academic year in which the unit(s) are studied.

Please note that students following the Flexible route are not eligible to apply for Scholarships and Bursaries.

UAL Home/EU alumni receive a £1,000 discount

Course fees may be paid in instalments

International Fee


UAL International alumni receive a £1,000 discount (Full Time only) Course fees may be paid in instalments

Please note that the Flexible mode of study is not available for International students.


College: London College of Fashion

Last updated March 3, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
15 months
Part time
Full time
17,230 GBP
Start date Sept. 2017
United Kingdom London, England
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Duration 15 months
Price 17,230 GBP
International Fee: £17,230 per year; Home/EU Fee: £8,250 per year (Full time); £920 per 20 credit unit (Flexible); £2,760 per 60 credit unit (Flexible)