Textiles Curriculum Overview

In Year 7 students are introduced to Textiles, their functions and properties.  Students learn the skills required to investigate, design, make and evaluate a Felt toy for a young child. 

In Year 8 students are encouraged to experiment with different methods of adding colour and designs to fabric.  They are given a design brief to design and make a product to be sold in the National Trust gift shop. This project focuses on how to embellish, decorate and construct textiles using both hand and machine methods.  Students are also introduced to CAD, CAM and pattern design.

In Year 9 Students complete a series of lessons where they focus on refining and developing a wider range of techniques and methods. A short GCSE unit of work then allows students to incorporate, develop and combine the knowledge and skills they have learnt over the last 3 years.

Course Title:  GCSE in Textiles Design

Awarding Body: EDEXCEL

Why study Textiles Design?

This GCSE is ideally suited to learners with a preference for practical as well as theoretical learning. The award is tailored towards students who are considering a specific career in the creative sector. The qualification fulfils entry requirements for academic and vocational study at post-16. This qualification is designed for students who want to study Fashion and Textiles in a hands-on, practical way that helps them develop the knowledge, skills and experience that could open the door to a career in the industry.

Course Outline

Learners complete two components:

Component one: Personal Portfolio

This is worth 60% of the qualification. Students undertake 3 or 4 projects associated with at least one of the following areas of study: Constructed textiles, digital textiles, dyed fabric, printed fabrics, fashion design, installed textiles, soft furnishings, stitched and/or embellished textiles. Students create a portfolio of work that demonstrates their knowledge, understanding and skills in response to centre set themes. This component allows students to develop and explore ideas, research primary and contextual sources, experiment with media, materials, techniques and processes as well as present personal and meaningful responses to themes.

Component two: Externally Set Assignment

This is worth 40% of the qualification. The ESA represents the culmination of the GCSE course as it draws together all the knowledge, understanding and skills developed in component one. Students complete a portfolio of work in response to a broad theme set by the exam board. They then complete a final personal response(s) during a 10-hour sustained focused period under exam conditions.

More information and the full syllabus can be found at:

Assessment Format

AO1: Develop ideas through investigations, demonstrating a critical understanding of sources.

AO2: Refine work by exploring ideas, selecting and experimenting with appropriate media, materials, techniques and processes.

AO3: Recording ideas, observations and insights relevant to intentions as work progresses.

AO4: Present a personal and meaningful response that realises intentions and demonstrates understanding of visual language.

What skills will I need to be successful in this subject?

It is important that you have a passion for the subject and a desire to know more about Textiles design and production. Students with a creative and problem-solving approach will excel in this subject. An ability to analyse work, express thoughts and make individual and personal choices whilst being prepared to experiment and take risks is also beneficial.

You will be expected to: work collaboratively and independently; visit exhibitions; and research and reflect on your practice.

Possible Careers and Future Education

This GCSE in Textiles Design gives learners a whole host of technical, transferable skills, including communication and teamwork.  Upon completion, learners can progress to Technical Certificates and other Level 3 vocational qualifications such as BTEC Extended Level 3 Diploma in Fashion and Textiles or A-level Fashion and Textiles. Careers and job roles could include; Fashion Designer, Pattern Designer and Grader, Garment Technologist/Product Developer, Sample Machinist, Fashion Buyer, Visual Merchandiser, Fashion Stylist and Fashion Blogger.