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Course content


Our Knitwear degree is aimed at students from a fashion, textiles or fashion technology background. It offers to extend and focus individual design skills. Approaching knitwear design from a creative, theoretical and technical viewpoint – whilst focusing on commercial relevance and product innovation.

It’s part of our School of Textiles & Design, which has long supplied leaders in knitwear and knitted textile design. It’s also near to Hawick, one of the most important manufacturing centres for luxury knitwear in the world – supplying to major brands such as Chanel, Prada and Louis Vuitton.

The MA Knitwear degree is taught at our Scottish Borders Campus in Galashiels. To find out more about this subject, visit the School pages.

Course length

The full-time Knitwear course starts in mid September and lasts one year. The course can also be taken part-time over two years.

Course Content:

We aim to achieve a balance between taught material, acquisition of key skills and knowledge with applied practical exploration and enquiry into current and continually changing industry expectations. Working closely with industry gives our students relevant insight and realistic expectations for employment in Knitwear Design, and related specialist areas, whilst equipping students with the ideal graduate attributes needed for a professional environment.


  • Critically evaluate traditional and contemporary knitwear design and production practices to inform design output
  • Develop the appropriate level of technical and creative skill for prototyping, visualising and communicating design ideas
  • Identify and analyse appropriate methods of design, production and yarn selection for different market levels
  • Respond innovatively to industrially and commercially relevant demands, restrictions and conventions, through industrial collaboration
  • Research, understand and apply current developments in technology to design thinking
  • Develop concepts and ideas that benefit the knitwear industry and enhance the sustainability of the discipline

Programme Structure

Semester 1

  • Design Context
  • Design Project
  • Design Technology & Innovation
  • Advanced Knitting Techniques & Practices

Semester 2:

  • Research Methodologies
  • Materials: Testing & Exploration
  • Knitwear Design & Production Communication

One of the following:

  • Business Enterprise
  • Brand Management

Semester 3:

  • Masters Knitwear Collection (with dissertation)

Combining specialist courses with core and elective courses, enables the students to develop specialist skills and understanding while also mixing with other post-graduate students from different disciplines to apply their design thinking to a broader range of outputs. This cultivates a flexible and creative approach to problem solving, and use of transferrable skills.


The assessment policies for this course incorporate a range of assessment types, with a specific emphasis on formative assessment, self-evaluation, debate and peer critique in all courses.

Summative assessment types include coursework, examinations, collaborative and individual problem based projects and a self-directed Masters project with dissertation.

Learning and teaching

The overall approach in the course is centred around the learner, with core information delivered via lectures and embedded during seminars.

Key practical techniques will be demonstrated and skills will be developed in workshop classes and by independent practice.

Courses are designed to enable students to undertake activities, which require complex skills such as analysis, synthesis and evaluation within both practical and theoretical contexts and to foster peer interaction and collaboration in a studio environment.

How to Apply:


Visit the MA Knitwear (Design, Heritage and Production) page on the Heriot-Watt University website for more details!




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