Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh

Degree level: Undergraduate

Costume Design and Construction

Make sure you check on the university, college or conservatoire website for any updates about course changes as a result of COVID-19.

Course summary

Costume design and construction is the process of creating and manufacturing clothing and accessories for performers in theatre, film, television and other associated media sectors. Costume designers and makers research, design, source and construct costumes for real or fictional characters, creating practical, bespoke items relevant to historical period and style. This vocational and highly practical course examines costume design and construction both conceptually and practically. The course collaborates with our other performing arts courses as well as external productions and projects and you will work on a variety of productions throughout your time on the course. At the heart of the course are six professional practice modules (two of them in each of the first three years of the degree). In these, you will work as part of a team delivering the costumes for a series of live projects working in collaboration with partner organisations and companies. Supporting this practical learning in Years One and Two are a series of modules which will develop your research and design skills, your analytic and writing skills, and your construction and wardrobe management expertise. In Year Three you can begin to specialise by working in greater depth on two or more of the varieties of pathways that costume practice offers — perhaps masks, puppets and soft props, or the design of costume for film, or historical cut and construction. You can extend your knowledge of these chosen skills in your industry placement and in your independent research and construction project. You will also fulfil key production roles in live projects, at QMU and with partner companies and organisers, as a designer, supervisor or specialist maker. In Year Four if you decide to undertake the honours year as many of our students do, the emphasis is on refining your chosen areas of future practice, using the independent professional practice options to gain practical experience and make contacts in the wider world.

Course details


Year One - Introduction to Theatre Production, The Origins of Theatre, Introduction to Wardrobe Practice (including Professional Practice), Introduction to Costume Design. Year Two - Advanced Costume Design, Advanced Costume Techniques, Professional Practice as a Wardrobe Assistant. Year Three - Professional Practice in a Lead Role, Practice informed Research Project, Creating in Context: Design Project, Theatre of Ideas – Introduction to European Theatre, Elective 1. Year Four - Honours study, Creative Enterprise in the Performing Arts, Creating your Career – Work-based Learning, Elective 2. The modules listed here are correct at time of posting any changes will be kept up to date on the course provider's webpage.

Assessment method

You’ll be taught in lectures, seminars and practical workshops. You’ll also work in a team delivering the costumes for live productions with well-known companies. Please see the course provider webpage for an idea of teaching, learning and assessment for this course. 2021 information, and updates, will be added when available.

Qualified teacher status (QTS)

To work as a teacher at a state school in England or Wales, you will need to achieve qualified teacher status (QTS). This is offered on this course for the following level:

  • Course does not award QTS

How to apply

Application deadlines

If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:

15 January

*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!

Application codes

You will need these codes when you add a choice to your application.

Course codeW451
Institution code Q25
Campus nameQueen Margaret University
Campus code-

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

Entry requirements

Standard Qualification Requirements

QualificationOfferFurther information
UCAS Tariff Not accepted
A level BCC English or Drama (or another theatre related subject) and preferably Art, Design or Textiles at A Level or equivalent. English is required at GCSE level grade C or 4. Maths is preferred at GCSE level grade C or 4.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) MMM
Access to HE Diploma Not accepted
Scottish Higher BBBB English or Drama (or another theatre related subject) and preferably Art, Design or Textiles at Higher or equivalent. English is required at National 5 grade C. Maths is preferred at National 5 grade C.
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme 28 points
Leaving Certificate - Higher Level (Ireland) (first awarded in 2017) H2, H2, H3, H3 English or Drama (or another theatre related subject) and preferably Art, Design or Textiles at Higher level or equivalent. English is required at Ordinary level O4. Maths is preferred at Ordinary level O4.
Scottish HNC Pass HNCs are considered on an individual basis.

We accept many different qualifications, but cannot list them all here. Please contact the Admissions Team for further information or advice if you are thinking of taking a course of study. We welcome applications from international and EU applicants and you can find information on specific entry requirements by country here: https://www.qmu.ac.uk/study-here/international-students/information-for-your-country/. We also welcome applications from mature students, or people holding qualifications such as Access courses or OU modules. The Scottish Wider Access Partnership (SWAP) offers a range of local Access courses and those that are accepted for entry are listed here: https://www.qmu.ac.uk/college-qualifications

Minimum Qualification Requirements

QualificationOfferFurther information
Scottish Higher BBCC English or Drama (or another theatre related subject) and preferably Art, Design or Textiles at Higher or equivalent. English is required at National 5 grade C. Maths is preferred at National 5 grade C.

Additional entry requirements


Portfolios will be requested electronically following the initial screening of your application. This e-portfolio should contain approximately 15 images and can be any combination of the following: • Observational drawings • Illustrations • Reproduction of pages of sketchbooks • Photographs of 3 dimensional work –this includes garments –but can be models/scenery/installation work etc. • Costume designs • Textile Designs The portfolio should also include images from a small task that will be sent out to applicants along with their e-portfolio request.

English language requirements

IELTS with an overall score equivalent to 6.0 and with no individual component less than 5.5.

QMU English Language Requirements


Fees and funding

Tuition fees

EU £15000 Year 1
England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1
Channel Islands £9250 Year 1
Scotland £1820 Year 1
International £15000 Year 1

Additional fee information

The Scottish Government confirmed that, as a result of Brexit, students from the EU starting their studies from academic year 2021-22 will no longer have the costs of their tuition fees met by the Scottish Government. As a EU student, you will be classified as an international student for the purposes of tuition fees. Future arrangements for Irish students from academic year 2021-22 under the Common Travel Area are subject to on-going discussions with the Scottish, UK and Irish Governments and are yet to be confirmed Students from England, Northern Ireland and Wales Full-time Rest of UK fees will be charged for the first three years of study. The fourth year is free.
Costume Design and Construction at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh - UCAS