Schools with Textile Design Programs: How to Choose

Textile designers create visually appealing patterns that cover the fabrics used in clothing and home goods. Associate's, bachelor's and master's degree programs prepare students for work as fashion designers, textile manufacturers or industry operations managers.

Undergraduate and graduate programs in textile design often have a technical bent, since textile design involves using specific software. It is possible to pursue an associate's, bachelor's or master's degree in textile design.

Schools for Textile Design

The following list includes a number of public and private schools that offer textile design programs.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered* Undergraduate Tuition (2015-2016)**
Fashion Institute of Technology New York, NY 4-year, Public Associate's, Bachelor's In-state $5,230; Out-of-state $14,230
The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA 4-year, Private for-profit Associate's $29,930
Kent State University Kent, OH 4-year, Public Bachelor's (minor) In-state $10,012; Out-of-state $18,212
Philadelphia University Philadelphia, PA 4-year, Private Bachelor's, Master's $36,670

Sources: *School websites, **National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

There are several things to consider when choosing a textile design school.

  • School location can have an impact, as the textile design industry has global hubs and hot spots.
  • Find out what study abroad opportunities or field trips comprise a program's curriculum.
  • Many schools provide state-of-the-art facilities for students to design and create in.
  • Some schools may have internships that will provide practical experience.

Associate's Degree in Textile Design

Although many associate's degree programs in design focus solely on fashion, a handful of programs limit their scope to textiles. They prepare students to work in textile design firms upon graduation, although the degree is well-suited for transfer to a bachelor's degree program.

Bachelor's Degree in Textile Design

A bachelor's degree program seeks to produce artistic designers who are versed in the application and creation of commonly used textiles. Most schools require a final design portfolio from the student before graduation.

Master's Degree in Textile Design

Generally terminal, these programs usually culminate in an exhibition of student work. Some graduate programs may offer a concentration or focus the curriculum on the business and merchandising aspect of the textile business.

A number of colleges and universities offer associate's, bachelor's and master's degrees in textile design. It is possible to study at a public or private institution, and the tuition costs vary widely based on the type of school where studies are pursued.

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