Level 4 Merchandising for Fashion

Fashion Retail Academy

Taking applications

  • College Courses
  • Level 4
  • College Higher Education
  • Alternative Courses/Degrees
  • Fashion
  • Retail
  • Design
  • Buying and Merchandising
  • London remove

Includes a work placement with a High Street retailer
95% of graduates go into job role or continue studying 
Supported by over 140 High Street Retailers  

With an emphasis on practical skills, this in-depth, one-year course will equip you with all the commercial and analytical skills and knowledge you’ll need to succeed in a career in merchandising. The course is taught by industry specialists and combines theoretical learning with hands-on placements, workshops and masterclasses.

Merchandisers are key to every life cycle of a garment, and this field is a varied, pivotal and exciting one to be in. You’ll be sitting right at the heart of the action, at the intersection of business and creativity, deciding how to sell products to customers. It’s a Merchandiser’s job to boost sales and maximise profits, and this can include making sure that stock is monitored and available, working with Buyers to advise on successful lines, and working with Operations to agree on production stock levels, and much more.

So, what will you learn? Over the duration of this unique course, you’ll explore the impact of historical, social and cultural factors on fashion retail, the merchandising environment on a global scale, and the impact of globalisation on the industry. You’ll gain a solid understanding of the importance of financial data and how to use this to forecast future trends, and will also be taught to use a range of systems to prepare you for future merchandising job roles. The course also offers a number of broad and transferable skills; in various modules, you’ll develop your collaborative, presentation and critical thinking abilities. Your independent study and research skills will be improved by an individually negotiated fashion retail project and a work placement with a recognised high street fashion brand.

This fusion of theoretical and hands-on skills is effective in preparing you for your career progression following graduation. L4 Merchandising for Fashion Graduates go on to secure roles such as Merchandise Administrative Assistant (MAA) and Assistant Merchandiser. To help you get there, we’ll help you to prepare a portfolio and CV and recognise promising job opportunities.


Preparation for progression in fashion retail: Through a mixture of lectures, seminars and workshops, you’ll develop the skills which will help you to maximise career progression, including writing a CV, preparing a portfolio and analysing job descriptions. You will be taught how to research and approach entry level merchandising positions and assess their suitability.

As part of this unit, you’ll hone your presentation abilities to effectively communicate to appropriate audiences and learn to work in a team to become an effective member of a workforce.  

Individual Negotiated Fashion Retail Project: In this unit, you will develop research, creative and analytical skills relevant to a career in merchandising. Through a mixture of taught and self-directed study, you will learn how to use your presenting, critical thinking and negotiation skills, as well as how to create a viable business proposition.

Contextual Studies for Fashion Retail: Develop your knowledge of fashion regarding its historical, cultural and contemporary influences. Analyse key ideas and concepts key to the evolution of fashion and enhance your research, critical thinking and academic writing skills.

You’ll learn about producing fashion, consuming fashion, fashion and representation, sustainability and much more.

Fashion Retail Environment – Merchandising: You’ll research, evaluate and interpret the context of the fashion retail industry as well as different merchandising environments. You’ll understand sales strategies in a global context, and explore the relationship between Buyer and Merchandiser, and understand the function of the Merchandiser in different businesses. 

Find out more about globalisation and customer profiling, as well as the importance of financial report information.

Fashion Retail – Merchandising Concepts: In this unit, you’ll be introduced to the importance of accurate data, the principles of planning trading and the retail Merchandiser’s function. Among other learnings will be: target market management, merchandising mix, ethical issues, retail law and supply chain management.

Fashion Retail Merchandising Systems and Skills: Gain competencies in relevant merchandising software and systems. You’ll learn how to interpret data and create your own spreadsheets. The unit is underpinned by financial information and theoretical concepts.

Using these systems, you’ll be taught how to forecast data, how to use this to plan strategically, and the relationship between financial planning and the planning and trading process. 


Awarding Body: University Arts London

Age Requirement: 18+

Start date: September 2019

Course duration: One year (two days per week)

Entry Criteria:  1 A-Level or the equivalent grade C or above and 5 GCSE’s grade 4/5-9 including Maths and English or 5 GCSE's A*-C grade including Maths and English, or a BTEC National Diploma or NVQ level 3, or a one year one year foundation diploma in Art and Design plus 5 GCSE’s grade 4/5-9 including Maths and English or 5 GCSE's A*-C grade including Maths and English. Please provide us with a NARIC Statement of Comparability, if you have any non-UK qualifications. We will not be able to process your application without this information.

Applicant Guidance:  Applicants should demonstrate an interest in fashion trends and numerical work

Fees: If you are 16-18 as of 31st August in the academic year of which your course starts and are a UK resident you will be eligible for full fee remission and do not have to pay any tuition fees. Fees for this course are £4,220.  Advanced learning loans are available.

Disclaimer on fees: Tuition fees are subject to change - the fees due are effective at enrolment.

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