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Textiles AS & A Level at Newcastle-under-Lyme College

Course description

This course offers full-time students the opportunity to gain a national qualification in textile design; covering many techniques and exciting ways of working. You will explore the use of different materials and methods of construction. Throughout the course you will be given the opportunity to take part in several related gallery/exhibition visits. In recent years this has included the Birmingham ‘Clothes Show Live’ fashion event and Jennifer Collier’s Unit 12 Gallery and studios. Students from this course have gone on to successful careers in the industry including the students ‘New Designer of the Year’ winner 2013, Kate Turton.

As your project work is highly individual in nature, you will be guided and supported by your course tutor, who will offer feedback and discuss approaches with you on a one to one basis. Practical demonstrations will be given on key techniques and skills by both your lecturer and visiting staff during the course. You will also learn a great deal from formal presentations and from discussion with classmates.


Course content

Year 1: You will explore an exciting range of techniques and approaches supported by analysis and discussion of the work of various Textile artists, whilst completing a series of projects culminating in one extended personal project from February to May. This extended year 1 project will conclude with an ambitious timed piece.

Year 2: Building on the skills and ideas explored in year one, you will undertake two major practical components (projects). Possible areas of study include; illustrative embroidery, interior design, textile installation, accessories, fine art textiles, constructed textiles (weaving), surface pattern design (printing), costume and fashion design.

Entry requirements

Usually you'll need five or more A* - C (9 – 4) grades at GCSE, including maths and English. A new grade scale is in operation for maths and English which is numerical. The equivalent to a B grade will be a 6 and the equivalent to a C grade will be 5 for entry requirement purposes.

For this subject you will also need to attain a minimum C grade in Textiles or another Art and Design based subject. You may also be accepted on the basis of a strong personal portfolio. You will need to show examples of your Art and Design work at interview.


In year 1 you will work on a series of skills building mini projects introducing key themes in Textiles. The first year will end with a more sustained project aimed at getting you ready for the year 2 assessments.

In year 2 you will produce:

1. Personal Investigation and related study (60% of A Level final grade).
A practical project supported by a related study of 1,000 words minimum. You will be encouraged to undertake a range of research in support of your chosen theme. This should include museum or gallery visits.

2. Externally Set Assignment (40% of A Level grade) where you will choose from a variety of starting points, culminating in a 15hr controlled practical test.

The two components combined are internally marked and externally moderated. Your final A Level grade is awarded based on the quality of research, experimental studies and final pieces evidenced in these modules.

Progression to year 2 will be dependent on successful completion of the first year taking into account Internal Progression Examination results and the Key Assessment Profile throughout the first year.

Financial information

Newcastle Maintenance Allowance (NMA): Anyone with a household income under £21,000 can receive £20 per week financial support to help pay for travel and meals and meet the costs of essential trips, books, stationery and equipment. The payments will be subject to full attendance on your course. A range of other financial support is available, depending on your personal circumstances.

Future opportunities

Successful completion of the course is an excellent basis for progression to a Foundation course in Art and Design, and an essential step towards a career in the Fashion and Textiles industry. Successful completion of the course can also support your application to Higher Education or employment.

Further information

Throughout the course you will be helped to develop the ability to assess, review and evaluate your own work. This will be through one to one and peer group discussion. Regular more formal assessment points are undertaken throughout the year where your work will be marked by the subject leader and feedback will be given including advice on ways to improve.

The course is supported by the College’s i-Site VLE, on which staff post helpful articles, presentations and links to relevant sites.

For more information about this course visit our blog:
or email the Subject Leader, Sharon Porteous:

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Newcastle-under-Lyme College directly.

Last updated date: 17 November 2016
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