Curriculum

Curriculum

The following are the required courses for this major. Students who attend Orientation and meet with the Education Department can obtain personalized academic counseling to complete the program. Transfer credits, changes in curriculum, and other factors may affect the academic plan for individual students. The FIDM Education Department can provide additional information.

Associate of Arts (A.A.)

GNST 1040
English Composition
UNITS: 3
In this process-oriented course, students combine deep, disciplined research with careful writing and revision to produce a thoughtful, creative, and personally meaningful research essay. They learn to formulate focused research questions, identify and investigate credible sources, and synthesize expert opinion with their own insight in support of a clearly defined, complex thesis. The emphasis is on curiosity, exploration, and discovery. As part of the process, students also gain confidence and competency in two primary areas of written expression: organization and mechanics.
GNST 1200
20th Century Designers
UNITS: 3
An exploration of major designers who have had a sustained impact, in both couture and ready-to-wear, on todays fashion. Students analyze how key figures in fashion design have influenced the styles and trends in line development of each decade since 1850, with emphasis on the last 30 years.
GNST 1230
Color & Design Theory
UNITS: 3
An introductory study of the principles and elements of color and design theory. Students critique aspects of a visual representation by analyzing the components of design and the use of color by the artist.
GNST 1450
College Mathematics
UNITS: 3
This course explores financial and consumer math, the geometry of flat and 3-dimensional spaces, and the basics of statistical analysis. Integrating mathematical equations and concepts in the context of problem solving and discovery, students complete projects and assignments demonstrating the effective use of quantitative tools to support their conclusions.
GNST 1600
Effective Speaking
UNITS: 3
A course in oral communication designed to give students poise, speaking confidence, and the ability to develop and produce a focused, well-organized speech that holds the audiences attention through effective delivery methods. Presentational skills and audience-centered communication are emphasized. Prerequisite: GNST 1040
GNST 1650
Critical Thinking
UNITS: 3
Designed to foster independent thinking, this course strengthens students capacity to reason clearly, critically, and creatively, including the ability (1) to analyze the arguments of others, (2) to synthesize effective arguments of their own, and (3) to solve problems skillfully. Students also gain experience in reading closely and conducting purposeful, imaginative research skills essential to the examination of demanding social, moral, political, and personal issues.
GNST 1900
Professional Skills
UNITS: 0
This course facilitates a comprehensive understanding of the tools and techniques necessary to effectively navigate the complexities of the job market. Students explore critical components of employment in order to prepare for their job search; the ultimate result is placement in their desired career. Students develop the following skills: building a meaningful resume; understanding how to navigate career sites, including but not limited to FIDM Career Network and Linkedin; effectively researching desired industry and organizations; perfecting interviewing techniques and skills; and finally understanding the benefits of a sharable portfolio which can be utilized throughout their careers.
GNST 2960
American Political & Economic History
UNITS: 3
A survey of American history from 1930-2000. Emphasis is on the political and economic features, both domestic and foreign, that contributed to the emergence of the welfare state and the nations rise to global leadership after World War II. The course provides an understanding of the Great Depression, the Second World War, the Cold War, Americas eventual emergence as the worlds only superpower, and the interrelation of all these factors.
MFTG 1400
Apparel Process I (6 hours)*
UNITS: 3
This class introduces students to the basics of draping and flat patternmaking, sewing, garment construction, and apparel production terminology. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
MFTG 1700
Apparel Process II (6 hours)*
UNITS: 3
This continuation of Apparel Process I covers contemporary construction including a denim jacket, knit hoodie and 5-pocket jean, finishing processes, and emerging trends in apparel production. Includes a three (3) hour lab. Prerequisite: MFTG 1400
MMKT 1550
Marketing & Brand Development
UNITS: 3
This course introduces and highlights the basic marketing principles which provide the framework for understanding the importance, value, and impact of marketing and brand management.
MPDV 1500
Product Development Fundamentals
UNITS: 3
An introductory course that highlights the processes involved in the preproduction phase of apparel product development: planning, forecasting, fabrication, developing silhouettes and specifications, pricing and sourcing. Students examine the best practices of the most successful brands in the fashion business to understand how companies must position themselves to be successful in this field. Career paths and job opportunities are defined and explored.
MPDV 1750
Trends and Fashion Forecasting
UNITS: 3
In this course, students combine systematic research with personal insight to produce individual trend reports that support and shape their own design objectives. As components of their research, they assess the influence of visual arts, music, and popular culture on runway, retail, and street fashion, with particular attention to the decisive impact of social media communities and fashion blogs on the art and science of current trend forecasting. Prerequisite: MMKT 1550
MPDV 1800
Fundamentals of Sketching
UNITS: 3
A flat sketching course for line development, line sheets, and specification sheets. Students learn basic drawing skills for garment illustration and the correct terminology used for identifying design details on garments.
MPDV 1850
Digital Sketching & Rendering
UNITS: 3
Introduction to Adobe Illustrator and its use as a tool for drawing technical flat sketches with accurate proportions and garment details. Instruction in the use of Adobe Illustrator tools and workspace to create effectively organized and editable digital files. Prerequisite: TECH 1100
MPDV 2100
Fashion Merchandising & Assortment Planning
UNITS: 3
An in-depth study of the financial planning process for the apparel industry. Students are introduced to pricing principles, the purchasing process, methods of analysis, and calculating profitability. A six month financial plan and unit plan are created by each student for the final project. Prerequisite: GNST 1450
MPDV 2150
Digital Presentation Applications
UNITS: 3
An advanced course, where students integrate the use of Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign to develop industry-standard digital presentations. Emphasis is placed on both technical and aesthetic mastery of computer applications that are specific to the evolving needs of the fashion industry. Prerequisite: MPDV 1850
MPDV 2300
Trend & Design Application
UNITS: 3
An introduction to the creative process involved in developing fashion apparel for both retail and manufacturing companies. Students learn how to conduct trend research and translate their ideas into products for a specific market and category of merchandise. Prerequisite: MPDV 1800
MPDV 2400
Preproduction for Apparel
UNITS: 3
A study of the process of garment prototype development and approval prior to production. Students learn how to create a technical packet of specifications and fit requirements for a variety of clothing styles utilizing the Gerber Technology web-based PDM system. Initial costs of all materials incurred in the production process are identified and estimated. Prerequisites: MFTG 1400, MPDV 1800, MPDV 1850
MPDV 2700
Classification & Line Development
UNITS: 3
A continuation of the Trend and Design Application (MPDV 2300) course. Students create their own line of exclusive products for an existing business. Emphasis is placed upon analyzing past selling results and incorporating those findings into a portion of the new line. Students learn how to make effective presentations of their seasonal lines while defending their design decisions. Prerequisites: MPDV 1850, MPDV 2300
MPDV 2750
Production & Sourcing Strategies
UNITS: 3
Students apply previously learned skills in garment specifications and costing to complete the production cycle.  Emphasis is placed on how to source all components of a garment, locate a maker for the garment, negotiate price for a garment, and develop a merchandising and production calendar. Students visit and evaluate a production facility. Prerequisite: MPDV 2400
MPDV 2780
Technical Design
UNITS: 3
In this course, students produce a sample of one of their original designs. Emphasis is on creating a prototype by developing garment specifications, applying advanced draping and pattern drafting techniques, and assessing the fit. Prerequisites: MFTG 1400, MFTG1700, MPDV 1850, MPDV2400
MPDV 2800
Advanced Preproduction
UNITS: 3
A continuation of the Preproduction for Apparel course, students expand their understanding of garment specifications and construction. Emphasis is placed upon analyzing the choices made for materials and garment construction, and how these choices affect the price of a garment. Students use the Gerber Technology web-based PDM system to create technical packs and cost sheets. Prerequisite: MPDV 2400
MPDV 2820
Fashion Start-Up Strategies
UNITS: 3
This course challenges students to evaluate and apply emerging technologies, social media, crowdfunding, and supply chain logistics to create their own fashion start-up. Emphasis is placed on understanding consumer behavior in the digital era and meeting customer expectations while building a brand and new brand experience. Prerequisites: MPDV 2100, MPDV 2700
MPDV 2850
Brand Portfolio Development
UNITS: 3
Students research and illustrate original designs for two brands and two distinct market segments of their choice to expand the content of their portfolio. Consideration is given to the use of technology as a means to expose and promote the students' skill level to the global job market. Personal branding of the students' portfolio is encouraged along with effective presentation techniques and formatting. Prerequisites: MPDV 2150, MPDV 2700
MRCH 1950
Excel for Business Applications
UNITS: 3
This course is designed to assist the student in developing a facility with electronic spreadsheets in support of effective business management. Students develop a working knowledge of computerized spreadsheet and chart functions as applied to business management concepts with related mathematical formulas and operational requirements. Prerequisite: GNST 1450
MRCH 2810
Sustainability & Social Responsibility
UNITS: 3
Introduces students to the concept, history, and science of sustainability and its relationship to the business of ethical fashion. Coursework topics focus on the development of eco-friendly materials, responsible manufacturing and distribution, and how companies are integrating social responsibility for the environment into their corporate philosophy and business practices. Prerequisites: MRCH 2420, MMKT 2460, MPDV 2400
TECH 1100
Introduction to Adobe
UNITS: 3
This course is an introduction to design techniques, naming conventions, and digital asset management within Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. Students gain basic knowledge of digital design components such as vector and raster graphics, tools, and key menu items, which they use to complete work in their major areas of study. These concepts support use of industry-standard computer aided design tools and facilitate communication between designers, clients, and manufacturers.
TSCI 1440
Textile Science
UNITS: 3
A practical analysis of the basic components of textiles and their relationship to performance. Students examine the characteristics of fibers, yarns, methods of fabric construction, such as weaving and knitting, and survey dyes, prints, and finishes. Emphasis is placed on performance and the determination of fabric suitability in the apparel design industry.
TSCI 1800
Fabric Identification
UNITS: 3
This course demonstrates knowledge of textiles and the application of these skills in the product development process. Emphasis is placed on the compatibility of fabrics to meet performance criteria and market acceptance. Students identify fabrics, weights, and finish. Prerequisite: TSCI 1440
TSCI 2100
Textile Application & Color Management
UNITS: 3
Students conclude their studies in textile science with a course concentrating on the practical application of textiles. Emphasis is placed on a product development simulation, which includes sourcing, inspection, research, and testing of textiles. Students evaluate suppliers and their role in the marketplace. Quality control and color management are assessed so that the best processes for an individual product may be selected. Dye labs include evaluation of yarn-dips, lab-dips, strike-offs, and fabric defects. Knits and the high performance market are also further examined. Prerequisites: TSCI 1440, TSCI 1800
Total Units of Credit: 90

* Three (3)-hour lab included in 6 hours

Some programs offered may require completion of a second year at the Los Angeles or San Francisco campus. Please contact the campus for details.