The Student Room Group

Art Foundation Degree or Visual Merchandising Diploma??

Hi!
So I've been given places on 2 courses and have to pick one - an art foundation degree or a level 3 visual merchandising & styling (which I can only do a year of - it equals 1½ alevels). I prefer the visual merchandising course as I feel it suits and attracts me more but my family wants me to take the art foundation because it's a higher level (I would've done alevels by then). Apparently it's also good for people who don't know what they want to do as a career (although I'm not sure about this as you choose which area to focus on after a term). I'm not looking to go to university but I don't know what job I want to do yet (possibly work in fashion retail). Any advice about either of the courses/which I should take?
Thank you!
Hi,

I understand that choosing the right course can be daunting. It's essential to do thorough research on the courses you're interested in. Your art foundation course may offer a chance to study visual merchandising and work on a project related to it. It's always worth inquiring about the course instructor's background.

If you have a particular career in mind, try to find out what level of qualification you need. Some job roles may require a full-level three qualification, so having it as a foundation would be preferable. Culturally it is your decision and it is always best to move forward with a course you will enjoy.

I hope this helps.

Kate 🙂
Arts University Plymouth Rep
aup.ac.uk
💻 Email us at [email protected]⁠
☎️ Call us on 01752 203402⁠
📱 Whatsapp us at 07722 744184⁠
Reply 2
Original post by ArtsUniPlymouth
Hi,

I understand that choosing the right course can be daunting. It's essential to do thorough research on the courses you're interested in. Your art foundation course may offer a chance to study visual merchandising and work on a project related to it. It's always worth inquiring about the course instructor's background.

If you have a particular career in mind, try to find out what level of qualification you need. Some job roles may require a full-level three qualification, so having it as a foundation would be preferable. Culturally it is your decision and it is always best to move forward with a course you will enjoy.

I hope this helps.

Kate 🙂
Arts University Plymouth Rep
aup.ac.uk
💻 Email us at [email protected]⁠
☎️ Call us on 01752 203402⁠
📱 Whatsapp us at 07722 744184⁠


Thank you for your response!

I find it's mostly about how much relevant work experience you have that helps you get into this industry. I know that the art foundation could give me a chance to work on visual merchandising elements but it won't teach me about it like the other course will. I'll have different instructors depending on which area I choose but all the adults I've talked to who work in the fashion industry have done a degree which I don't want to do. I shall do some more research!
Hi @Olly!

Art Foundation Diplomas do tend to be a great option for people who are unsure what exact artistic field they want to pursue in the future - because whilst you're absolutely right that lots of art foundation courses ask you to choose a focus after one term, they also expose students to facilities or fields (e.g. ceramics, metalworking, large-scale sculpture) they didn't get to experience at GCSE or A-Level and might not have known about otherwise.

But if you do have a rough idea of the artistic field you want to pursue in the future - in your case, fashion retail - then the Visual Merchandising & Styling Diploma might make more sense for you personally. I would definitely make sure to ask the diploma provider/course leader what students tend to do after the diploma though - i.e. do graduates immediately go into work, or do they do another visual merchandising qualification before entering the workforce.

Are there any other considerations in terms of which course would be the best for you (i.e. is one closer than the other), or is it just the content that's important?

Eve (Kingston Rep).
(edited 3 months ago)
Reply 4
Art foundation may be the better choice
Reply 5
Original post by Kingston Reps
Hi @Olly!

Art Foundation Diplomas do tend to be a great option for people who are unsure what exact artistic field they want to pursue in the future - because whilst you're absolutely right that lots of art foundation courses ask you to choose a focus after one term, they also expose students to facilities or fields (e.g. ceramics, metalworking, large-scale sculpture) they didn't get to experience at GCSE or A-Level and might not have known about otherwise.

But if you do have a rough idea of the artistic field you want to pursue in the future - in your case, fashion retail - then the Visual Merchandising & Styling Diploma might make more sense for you personally. I would definitely make sure to ask the diploma provider/course leader what students tend to do after the diploma though - i.e. do graduates immediately go into work, or do they do another visual merchandising qualification before entering the workforce.

Are there any other considerations in terms of which course would be the best for you (i.e. is one closer than the other), or is it just the content that's important?

Eve (Kingston Rep).


Hi! Thank you for the advice.

Yes, it is only the content and level that's important (as well as the tutors but it's too early to tell currently). I think at this stage, after taking art based subjects for 4+ years, I just want something for my final year of education that's a little different and more focused on what I potentially want to do. However, it still has some (fairly relaxed) artsy element to it.

When I spoke to the tutor they said people have gone straight into work, to uni etc. after doing this course. It depends on the person of course but it can take you in multiple directions.

Also, I feel at this point I have tried so many art related skills (in and out of education) in so many different areas that there's nothing much new I can learn.

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