About the course

This course is available to UK/EU students only.

Visual merchandising is a key part of the marketing operation of all major retailers. In department stores and fashion multiples the visual merchandising manager makes sure promotions are consistent throughout the store and its advertising. Visual merchandising managers are responsible for designing and commissioning in-store promotion and display schemes and are experts in how to turn creative ideas into reality.

You'll develop your design and practical skills to standards that will impress the retailers you deal with, learning to source stunning materials, graphics and equipment to carry out your ideas, and to negotiate with suppliers to get the best deal. You'll work on photo-shoots to promote the latest fashion and home furnishing concepts, develop leadership and management skills to get the best out of your team, and learn to use a range of business and design software.

British Display Society Accredited

The Foundation Degree in Visual Merchandising is recognised by the British Display Society as a UK ‘Centre of Excellence’. Graduates may receive the award of ProDip.BDS upon successful completion of the course and have the benefit of membership of the British Display Society whilst studying at Hertford Regional College. 

Take a look at the course booklet to find out more.

Fact sheets 2019 Course fact sheet 1 FdA Visual Merchandising
Programme specifications 2019 Programme specification 1 Foundation Degree in Creative Enterprise

Why choose this course?

This programme will provide you with:

  • the knowledge and skills to embark on a career in visual merchandising
  • opportunities for work-based learning and experience in visual merchandising and spatial design
  • an opportunity to gain a nationally recognised qualification in two years of full-time study
  • the ability to deal with space, product presentation methods and presentation techniques such as model making
  • strong industry links with well-known leading retail brands such as Selfridges, Harrods, John Lewis, Marks & Spencer and Ikea and opportunities to gain in-depth work experience via work placements, ‘live briefs’, and presentations from industry specialists.

Course details


When you successfully complete your Foundation degree, you can choose to start working in the retail sector, or within design studios supplying visual merchandising and exhibition concepts. Alternatively, you can progress to the Third Year of the BA(Hons) Interior Architecture and Design course at the University of Hertfordshire.

Teaching methods

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, small group tutorials, course work and practical assignments. Throughout you are encouraged to undertake independent study to consolidate your learning and to broaden your knowledge and understanding of the subject.

In addition, you will be exposed to the application of Visual Merchandising skills and knowledge in the workplace through work based learning. You will study work based learning modules in year one culminating in a work based learning project negotiated with an employer in year two.

Work Placement

As part of your course, you will also undertake two work placements with a major retailer or design studio where you'll usually be given your own design project to manage.


  • Year 1
    Module Credits Compulsory/optional
    Creative Problem Solving (HRC) 30 Credits Compulsory
    Historical and Contemporary Context (HRC) 15 Credits Compulsory
    WBL: Developing Professional and Employability Skills (HRC) 30 Credits Compulsory
    Creative Languages (HRC) 15 Credits Compulsory
    Creative Vocational Practice (Visual Merchandising) (HRC) 30 Credits Compulsory
  • Year 2
    Module Credits Compulsory/optional
    WBL Project: Professional Practice (HRC) 30 Credits Compulsory
    Contextual Studies (HRC) 15 Credits Compulsory
    Cultural and Ethical Debate (HRC) 15 Credits Compulsory
    Final Major Project - Visual Merchandising (HRC) 30 Credits Compulsory
    Portfolio Development (Visual Merchandising) (HRC) 30 Credits Compulsory
  • Fees & funding

    Fees 2019

    UK/EU Students

    Full time
    • £6165 for the 2019/2020 academic year

    *Tuition fees are charged annually. The fees quoted above are for the specified year(s) only. Fees may be higher in future years, for both new and continuing students. Please see the University’s Fees and Finance Policy (and in particular the section headed “When tuition fees change”), for further information about when and by how much the University may increase its fees for future years.

    View detailed information about tuition fees

    Read more about additional fees in the course fact sheet

    Other financial support

    Find out more about other financial support available to UK and EU students

    Living costs / accommodation

    The University of Hertfordshire offers a great choice of student accommodation, on campus or nearby in the local area, to suit every student budget.

    View detailed information about our accommodation

    Entry requirements

    48 UCAS points 

    IB - 48 points with a minimum of 1 HL subject at grade 4 or above (with the remaining points to come from a combination of HL, SL and Core).

    GCSE Maths and English Language at grade 4 or above. Plus an interview or presentation of portfolio may be required.

    The University also accepts a number of other equivalent qualifications including BTEC, IB and Access courses – to find out more about the requirements for these and other equivalent qualifications please visit UCAS

    Mature students with GCSE grade C or above English language and maths or equivalent, but lacking traditional level 3 qualifications will be considered on the basis of relevant experience and an appropriate portfolio of work.

    How to apply

    Course length
    • Full Time, 2 Years


    Start DateEnd Date Year Location Link
    15/09/202023/05/20211Hertford Regional CollegeApply online (Full Time)
    15/09/202023/05/20212Hertford Regional CollegeApply online (Full Time)


    Start DateEnd Date Year Location Link
    15/09/202123/05/20221Hertford Regional CollegeApply online (Full Time)
    15/09/202123/05/20222Hertford Regional CollegeApply online (Full Time)