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Product Design: Textiles at Spalding High School

Course description


Studying textiles offers you a great opportunity to learn and develop your creativity and interests in fashion and textiles and enjoy the challenge of designing and making to solve problems or needs. This exciting course is designed to persuade you to take a broad view of technology and design; from fashion and aesthetics to scientific and industrial uses of textiles and from creative and individual work to aspects of manufacturing and industrial and commercial practice.


You should be prepared to purchase specific items such as an A3 portfolio and a memory stick. Students are responsible for purchasing all practical work requirements and a contribution is requested for experimental materials. Examination papers and coursework require you to have the ability to write fluently, use correct terminology and good English. Whether new to the subject or continuing with the subject from GCSE, we strongly suggest background reading such as fashion magazines and newspapers, visiting art galleries, costume museums and internet websites. This will provide you with a broad view of textiles and may help you with the choice of your coursework and possible career options.

Course content


AS coursework will take the form of a design portfolio of work and practical outcomes as appropriate to the work undertaken. You are expected to apply your knowledge and understanding of the specification content to your own projects.

The AS written paper is based primarily on materials, components and application such as learning about fibres, yarns and fabrics and product analysis.


Whole class teaching, practical demonstrations, class discussion and peer assessment all contribute to the delivery of the course. The type of work set may be individual and/or group work, and will involve investigation and research, sketching, note taking, reading, product analysis, revision for tests, practical work and presentations. We positively encourage individualized and personalized learning through both coursework and research. Main specification areas will be tested when the topic is completed. It is important that good revision takes place to ensure a gradual acquisition of knowledge and understanding of inter-related topics.

The use of the internet is most useful when researching ‘cutting edge’ textiles technology. The facilities of the department can be used outside normal timetabled lessons if permission is sought and you will be encouraged to spend some of your study time in the department.

Entry requirements

To achieve at least 6 grades, A* to C, at GCSE, including English language and mathematics.

Students are required to have a reference/report which clearly shows that they are suitable to undertake academic studies at A Level standard.



Coursework (portfolio) provides 50% of the marks and one 2 hour examination paper also provides 50% of the total AS mark.

For coursework at A2, candidates must select a problem/situation before setting their own objectives related to the design issues and manufacture of a product.

The A2 written paper is based primarily on design and manufacture.

Both the coursework task and exam paper are synoptic in nature and should consider all aspects of the specification.

Both AS and A2 each provide 50% of the total award.

Future opportunities


Studying GCE textiles is a route that can lead to a very broad range of opportunities. Past students who simply enjoy studying textiles have used their UCAS points to gain university places to read subjects such as Law or Business while others have embarked upon exciting textiles/art/performance related courses or employment.

The scope of the future in textiles ranges from fashion forecasting, fabric or shoe design, period costume restoration and fabric technology through to pattern cutting, interior design, theatre costume production, marketing, journalism and retail. Recently, a past student was offered substantial sponsorship and valuable work experience from the textiles science and technology industry before embarking on the course.

You can also study textiles with a view to teaching. It is important to check higher education entry requirements to determine suggested subject combinations such as art, sciences etc, if any of these appeal to you. Students who successfully complete the A level course will have a portfolio suitable to take to interview for a degree course in fashion, textile or costume design.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Spalding High School directly.

Last updated date: 04 December 2015
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 years