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Art & Design

This two year full time Foundation Degree is validated by the University of Hertfordshire

UCAS code: WN22
Institution code: H36 (University of Hertfordshire)
Campus code: H (Hertford Regional College)

To apply for the course please click here for the UCAS application form. Please use the above codes.

Whether it is in a physical or digital space, successful visual merchandising is a key part of the marketing strategy for all major retailers. It helps brands define their image, create positive customer experiences and ultimately drives sales through the creation of exciting displays, experiences and promotions.

Our FdA Visual Merchandising course is a two year full time programme which provides the opportunity to gain a nationally recognised qualification. It focuses on developing creative and technical skills which provide a strong foundation for a career in the creative industries. You will undertake a range of vocational projects, which blend creativity and business, understanding how to combine materials, graphics and equipment on one hand and promotion of concepts on the other. You will learn the fundamentals of visual merchandising including display design, spatial design, fashion promotion and styling, customer behaviours, graphic design, marketing, and product promotion and styling. This course has an emphasis on personal development and employability within the creative industries, offering high profile live briefs and work placements from leading retail brands, as well as excellent industry feedback, guest speakers, study trips and overseas visits.

The FdA Visual Merchandising programme is validated by the University of Hertfordshire and you can read more comprehensive course information here.

What can I do next?

Upon successful completion of the course you have the option to progress onto the final year of BA (Hons) Interior Architecture and Design at the University of Hertfordshire. Alternatively, you can progress onto an appropriate BA (Hons) programme at another institution. You could also enter a career in the creative industries. There are a range of career opportunities within the fields of visual merchandising, display design, event and exhibition design, interior designer, retail design, fashion promotion and styling, graphic design and product promotion and styling. Our graduates have also gone on to set up their own businesses or continue their professional practice on a freelance, self-employed basis.

What will I be doing?

Teaching comprises a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops, small group tutorials, practical assignments and written work. You are encouraged to undertake independent study to consolidate your learning and to broaden your knowledge and understanding of the subject. You will also experience working collaboratively on projects with other higher education courses.

The engagement of students with industry through work placement is comprehensive on the programme with a dedicated work-based learning module that provides the opportunity to expand, develop and apply knowledge, understanding and skills learnt with local and national employers. Located just outside of the retail epicentre that is London allows opportunities for work placements and live briefs at some of the world's most highly regarded locations; previous collaborations include Selfridges, Harrods, Harvey Nichols, John Lewis, Marks & Spencer, Tesco and IKEA as well as many smaller businesses. You are also encouraged to independently negotiate and organise your own work placement opportunities.

Level 4 (Year One)

Core Modules

  • WBL: Developing Professional and Employability Skills Part 1 - 15 Credits
  • Creative Skills Development - 30 Credits
  • Vocational Project - 30 Credits
  • WBL: Developing Professional and Employability Skills Part 2 - 15 Credits
  • Contextual Studies - 30 Credits

Level 5 (Year Two)

Core Modules

  • WBL Project: Professional Practice - 30 Credits
  • Critical and Cultural Studies - 30 Credits
  • Portfolio Development (Visual Merchandising) - 30 Credits
  • Final Major Project (Visual Merchandising) - 30 Credits

For further information on the above modules please click here.

Added Extras

You will have access to state-of-the-art facilities including a dedicated purpose-built display studio with display practice spaces and store-quality glazed windows. As well as workshops, Mac suites and industry standard resources. We have a Creative Enterprise Shop that stocks products designed by you. The shop also pops-up at local community events, shops, empty shop units, external exhibitions both local and inner London. The teaching team combines full-time teaching staff with part-time industry professionals, who split their time between teaching and working in the creative industries. Throughout the programme there is an international study trip; recent destinations include Berlin, Iceland and Budapest, as well as national study trips and visits to businesses, agencies, museums and galleries.

We are exceptionally proud to say that the FdA Visual Merchandising programme is recognised by the British Display Society as a UK 'Centre of Excellence'. Graduates may receive the award of Fnd.Dip.bds upon successful completion of the course and have the benefit of membership of the British Display Society whilst studying on the programme.

You can visit our Instagram @creative_enterprise_hub and follow our current students creative exploits.

You will also have the opportunity to manage and curate your own exhibitions in our stunning David Gentleman Gallery as well as at external venues.

The David Gentleman Gallery has exhibitions digitally as well as physically, you can see our current online exhibitions at

How will I be assessed?

This programme is assessed from 100% coursework consisting of practical assignments and written work. These include creative projects, pitches, presentations, project management, live briefs, work placements, ongoing reflection/evaluation, essays and reports.Assessment is continuous throughout the programme with tutor, self and peer assessment with a University Exam Board at the end of each semester.

Entry requirements

48 UCAS points

IB - 48 points with a minimum of 1 HL subject at grade 4 or above (with the remaining points to come from a combination of HL, SL and Core).

An interview or presentation of portfolio may also be required.

The University also accepts a number of other equivalent qualifications including BTEC, IB and Access courses - to find out more about the requirements for these and other equivalent qualifications please visit UCAS.

Mature students will be considered on the basis of relevant experience and an appropriate portfolio of work.

How to Apply?

Applications are via UCAS to the University of Hertfordshire. Please use the below codes:

  • UCAS code: WN22
  • Institution code: H36 (University of Hertfordshire)
  • Campus code: H (Hertford Regional College)

Please click here for the UCAS application form.

Fee Information


£6165 for the 2022/2023 academic year.

Students are normally eligible for a tuition fee loan from Student Finance England. See

Tuition fees are charged annually. The fees quoted above are for the specified year(s) only.

These fees are indicative of the 2021-22 costs and may be subject to change


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