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Our MSc International Fashion Marketing teaches specialist fashion marketing combined with international marketing. Develop practical skills alongside an understanding of fashion theory equipping you for a diverse career within the fashion industry.
The MSc in International Fashion Marketing provides students with a contextualised knowledge of international marketing that prepares them to meet the marketing challenges facing the fashion industry today.
There are eight taught courses, divided equally over two semesters, followed by an international fashion marketing dissertation in semester 3. Part-time students register for two courses per semester and progress to the dissertation at the end of their second year. Assessment is specifically designed to develop professional career readiness and includes …
Mandatory courses deliver core international marketing concepts (International Strategic Marketing, Contemporary Consumers in Fashion, Marketing Metrics, Branding and Communication in Fashion, Research Philosophy and Practice) as well as specialist marketing knowledge (Fashion Product Development and Fashion Buying and Merchandising).
In Semester 2 students have the choice of a marketing course option in either Sustainable Marketing or Social Media Marketing reflecting vital fashion industry trends.
In Semester 3 the International Fashion Marketing dissertation is the capstone course where students 'deep-dive' into their chosen area of research. Students will demonstrate their mastery of the subject area by developing new insight from analysis of valuable primary research.
Specialist mandatory courses
Fashion Product Development
This course provides insight into the management process of fashion product development and develops knowledge of the concepts and terminology specific to garment manufacture. Students will learn about the processes and challenges of developing new fashion products and will be trained in both market-led and design-led approaches. Customer preferences, brand positioning and market demand is examined for both luxury and high street fashion segments. Upon the conclusion of the course students will know how textile characteristics and garment construction can be adjusted to meet business objectives.
Fashion Buying and Merchandising
Buyers and merchandisers are key to fashion business success as they are responsible for maximising income through predicting sales potential, responding to customer demand and maintaining competitive advantage through selecting, sourcing, and managing product. This course introduces students to the structure and scope of the buying and merchandising function, develops in-depth knowledge of the process of range building and critically reviews the mechanisms for effective supplier selection, negotiation, and performance evaluation. At the end of the course students will be able to create, develop and evaluate a fashion buying and merchandising plan using online retail market planning tools provided by Edited.com.
An MSc with industry demand
The International Fashion Marketing MSc develops both technical and managerial skills that will enable students to progress to a range of careers in international fashion marketing. Fashion brands and retailers are competing globally for market share whilst being environmentally sustainable and digitally authentic. This degree programme will develop critical thinking skills, an awareness of contemporary trends coupled with industry accredited international marketing knowledge. The programme benefits from the support of a fashion and textile industry careers advisor based at the School of Textiles and Design. Graduates have secured roles in fashion journalism, fashion brand management and retail merchandising.
Heriot Watt is a global university and classes are shared with students from a range of MSc programmes and nationalities providing opportunities for professional networking that will be of benefit in professional life. Students also can become involved in the Heriot Watt Marketing Society, a student-run society which hosts speakers from industry and organises social events.
Our research: a driving force for new knowledge
The MSc International Fashion Marketing Programme Director is Dr Kathryn Waite, and the Head of the Marketing Group is Professor Stephen Carter. The MSc International Fashion Marketing is part of the Marketing Group’s portfolio of programmes, which includes the MSc International Marketing with Consumer Psychology, the MSc Digital Marketing, the MSc International Business Management with Marketing, and the MSc International Marketing. The Marketing Group are currently ranked 1st in Scotland and 4th in the UK by the National Student Satisfaction survey highlighting how highly valued their degree programmes are.
Faculty research includes publications in digital consumption (Dr Ian Grant), entrepreneurship (Elaine Collinson, Dr Andrew Maclaren), digital marketing (Dr Kathryn Waite), retail atmospherics and consumer diversity (Dr Chris Dodd). Professor Babak Taheri is an international expert in tourism and leisure marketing; he has published over 100 academic publications and serves as a senior editor on several top-ranked academic journals. Professor Marylyn Carrigan is an internationally recognized expert in the field of ethical and sustainable consumption; she has won multiple research grants, published over 100 academic articles, and serves on the boards of several leading management journals. Professor Stephen Carter has published a leading textbook in Global Marketing Management and several journal articles in the application of digital technology in a global context.
Group members are active in several University research centres including the Centre for Research on Employment, Work and Professions (Dr Kathryn Waite), Centre for Logistics and Sustainability (Prof. Marylyn Carrigan), and the Quantitative Social Sciences Research Centre (Professors Carter and Taheri). The Marketing Group faculty also possess considerable practitioner experience of advertising and communication agencies (Dr Ian Grant), corporate and project communications (Jane Priest) and international industry/academic partnerships (Elaine Collinson). Professor Carrigan has extensive contacts with industry including serving as a member of the Standards Committee for the Responsible Jewellery Council, and consulting for Fairtrade Gold and the BBC. Professor Carter has had considerable commercial experience working in many companies globally and was recently a UN Regional Project Director in Eastern and Southern Africa. He has made marketing programmes for UK television and his career includes setting up a UK commercial radio station.
Specialist fashion courses are delivered by experts who combine academic insight with substantial industry experience. Fashion Product Development is taught by three faculty members from the Heriot Watt School of Textile and Design. Bruce Roberts, who is the course leader, founded and managed his own bespoke garment design and production company before becoming the Director of Studies for Fashion Technology. Dr Lisa Macintyre is a specialist in knitting technology and the physical testing of textiles and is researching quality issues with luxury knitwear manufacturers and medical compression product. Finally, Dr Danmei Sun who is researching smart/functional textile materials and eco-friendly print and colour processes. Fashion Buying and Merchandising is taught by Dr Antoinette Fionda-Douglas who is member of the EBS Marketing Group, an accredited United Nations expert on sustainable fashion and the co-founder and MD of Beira Moda Ltd. The course also benefits from the insights of Heather Marshall who is an experienced textile and fashion career advisor with considerable experience of working in fashion retailing as a buyer.
The mandatory course in 'Research Philosophy and Practice', which is the springboard to the dissertation project, is taught by Dr Lina Fadel whose interdisciplinary research has addressed global challenges including ethnic group identity and the experiences of Syrian refugees in the UK.
- MSc - 12 months full-time; 24 months part-time
- PGDip - 9 months full-time; 21 months part-time
The MSc is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) within the Graduate Gateway programmes. This provides graduate with a credit for prior learning upon completion of their degree or the choice of self-study for a CIM qualification during their programme of study. This would require registration on one additional CIM training course to gain a CIM certificate or two additional courses to gain a CIM diploma.
|Semester 1 (Sep - Dec)|
|International Strategic Marketing|
|Contemporary Consumers in Fashion|
|Digital Customer Experience|
|Fashion Product Development|
|Semester 2 (Jan - April)|
|Branding and Communication in Fashion|
|Research Philosophy and Practice|
|Fashion Buying and Merchandising|
|Choose ONE of the following options:|
|Social Media Marketing|
|Semester 3 (May-Aug)|
|International Fashion Marketing Dissertation|
Fashion Marketing mandatory courses
Fashion Product Development
This course provides insight into the management process of fashion product development and develops knowledge of the concepts and terminology specific to garment manufacture.
Fashion Product Development
This course introduces students to the structure and scope of the buying and merchandising function, develops in-depth knowledge of the process of range building and critically reviews the mechanisms for effective supplier selection, negotiation ,and performance evaluation.
International Marketing mandatory courses
Digital Customer Experience
This course examines the components that form the basis of digital customer experience management. Upon completion students will understand the customer journey, recognise the role of customer insight, understand omni-channel marketing strategy and be aware of legal and ethical issues.
International Strategic Marketing
This course identifies choices in marketing strategies for local and international brands, focusing on operating a global business.
Contemporary Consumers in Fashion
On this course you will learn about the conceptual, theoretical, and practical approaches to studying consumer behaviour.
Branding and Communications in Fashion
This course helps you to master the key principles of brand management by learning how integrated marketing communications creates a valuable brand with strong, effective messaging.
Research Philosophy and Practice
This course provides training in a range of research skills that prepares you for the dissertation project and provides the foundation for roles in market insight and business consultancy.
Marketing course options
Social Media Marketing
This course provides understanding of theories and applications of social media marketing alongside a critical evaluation of the social, cultural, and technological impact of social media technologies upon consumer behaviour and the business environment.
On this course, you will examine how to market sustainably within the context of fundamental social and economic change, developing an understanding of the sustainable consumer, the barriers to sustainable consumption and how sustainable marketing can be practiced.
Over the summer the master’s dissertation enables you to deepen your knowledge of international fashion marketing through research into a topic of your choice. You will gather and analyse data from companies or consumers which directly relates to your ambitions and interests.
Examples of topics within this discipline are:
- An investigation into post-consumption guilt within luxury fashion
- Cross-cultural examination of the online shopping addiction: A comparison of Thailand and UK.
- 'Green' (Sustainable) Marketing within the Global Fashion Industry: A Content Analysis of Annual Reports
- Self-identity and consumption of sustainable fashion items among Millennials. A comparison between Italian and British consumers.
- An exploration into the impact of social media influencers on millennial buying behaviour in the fast fashion industry within the UK and India.
Careers and employability on IFM
Alongside the core teaching on IFM we also have significant input on careers development from our university careers support (including Rachel Mathia, Fashion Consultant), internship providers (Johari; Solo and others) and direct recruitment activity from companies such as Abercrombie & Fitch.
Meet the course leaders
Elaine Collinson B.A. (Hons), MPhil Elaine Collinson is Associate Professor of Marketing and Course Leader for International Strategic Marketing. She has over 25 years’ experience teaching in the area of marketing and is the Director of Postgraduate Studies and Director of Corporate Executive Relationships in the School of Social Sciences.
Professor Michael Danson is Professor of Enterprise Policy and Director of Doctoral Programmes and Course Leader for Research Philosophy and Practice. He has extensive experience of conducting research and providing policy advice on economic development, urban and regional labour markets, European and national programmes.
Dr Babak Taheri is Associate Professor of Marketing and Course Leader for Branding and Communications and Issues and Trends in Tourism. HIs research has a dual focus: tourism marketing and consumer research. Throughout his career he has had over 70 academic publications and secured over £2.5m funding (including Horizon 2020 and KTP).
Dr Christine Rutherford is Associate Professor of Supply Chain Management in the Logistics Research Centre at Heriot-Watt University and Course Leader for Marketing Logistics. Her research is in the area of supply chain strategy and planning, she has worked with several blue chip companies helping them improve their supply chain planning processes through consultancy and bespoke training.
Bruce Roberts is the Director of Studies for Fashion Technology at the School of Textiles and Design in Galashiels. Within this role he oversees the Fashion Technology programme, industrial placements and also industry collaborations.
Heather Marshall is an approved teacher for MSc International Fashion Marketing on Buying and Merchandising Module.
Andrew Maclaren is an assistant professor in Marketing at Heriot-Watt University.
Antoinette Fiondra-Douglas is a lecturer at Heriot-Watt University.
Meet the programme director
Dr Kathryn Waite is Assistant Professor of marketing, Course Leader for Advances in Digital Marketing, and Director of the International Marketing Management MSc Programmes. As a mature student she gained an MBA followed by a PhD at Edinburgh University. Her research focuses upon digital technology and she has published several journal articles examining issues of trust, engagement and empowerment.
A good Honours degree (first or second class), or its non-UK equivalent, in a related subject.
Applicants with relevant education and work experience may also be considered.
English language requirements
If your first language is not English, or your first degree was not taught in English, we’ll need to see evidence of your English language ability.
The minimum English language requirement for entry to this programme is IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent) with no component lower than 6.0.
If you do not have IELTS 6.5, we offer a range of English language courses to help you meet the English language requirement for this programme prior to commencing your studies:
- 14 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with minimum of 5.0 in all skills)
- 10 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with minimum of 5.5 in reading & writing and minimum of 5.0 in speaking & listening)
- 6 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with minimum 5.5 in all skills)
- Your residency 'status' is usually defined as the country where you have been ordinarily resident for the three years before the start of your course. Find out more about tuition fees.
- Fee per course (module). Refer to the Course Content to see how many courses comprise the full programme.
- Overseas includes applications from European Union countries who do not hold Pre-Settled or Settled status in the UK. Read more about the application process for EU nationals.
Scholarships and bursaries
We aim to encourage well-qualified, ambitious students to study with us and we offer a wide variety of scholarships and bursaries to achieve this. Over £6 million worth of opportunities are available in fee and stipend scholarships, and more than 400 students benefit from this support.
View our full range of postgraduate scholarships.