Pre-degree Foundation Diploma in Fashion

Few spots left! Applications for the Academic year 2024-2025 are still open.

The Amsterdam Fashion Academy Foundation Diploma programme is a stimulating and innovative introduction to the fashion industry that lasts for one year. It is aimed at school leavers who wish to study in an intimate, supportive educational environment that has close links to the fashion industry. Our Foundation Diploma course is very much activity-based: theoretical knowledge is gained through numerous practical activities. This also means the students end up with a physical portfolio of their work to demonstrate their progression. Additionally, students learn a broad range of skills including illustration, print, knit and draping, digital technologies, brand development and marketing. Our diploma programme provides a direct pathway to completing a Fashion Design or Fashion Business bachelor’s degree and supports students who need to complete a foundation course to progress to other undergraduate degree programmes.

Watch the video interview to the students

Admission: applications for the academic year 2024/2025 are open. Deadline for the applications is 5th of March 2024.

Level: Foundation Diploma (Level 3). It gives direct entry onto a BA (Hons) degree.

Duration: 1-year full-time programme

Language: English only

Dates: September 2024 to June 2025

Credits: 0 credits. You will receive a final evaluation “Pass” or “No pass”

Tuition fee: € 10.250*

Application fee: € 300

Maximum number of students: 24 students divided in small groups

The Amsterdam Fashion Academy’s approach to teaching fashion is a truly multidisciplinary one, taking in a broad range of subjects: fashion illustration, draping, design development, digital technologies, business awareness, styling, brand development, marketing, trend forecasting and an introduction to print, weave and knit.


Classes revolve around experimental use of sketchbooks to develop ideas, themes or concepts alongside considerations such as understanding the difference between designing for fashion and simply buying and wearing it. The Foundation Diploma programme is portfolio-driven and is weighted equally between design and business. This gives you a chance to experiment and decide which career path is right for you.


We encourage our students to draw on the experience of current industry practitioners and to gain a real life understanding of the business of fashion by taking part in live industry projects and visiting existing companies. Throughout the programme there is a focus on sustainability and ethical considerations, new and emerging technologies, equality, diversity and creativity. Small class sizes ensure you get the personal attention required to make the most of your studies.


Whether you don’t meet the academic requirements to enter into a bachelor’s degree programme, can’t decide between fashion design or fashion business or simply want to broaden and develop your range of fashion-related skills, our Foundation Diploma programme is perfect for you.


Although this course is completely independent from the bachelor’s degrees, students have the opportunity to progress directly to our bachelor’s degree courses in Fashion Design or Fashion Business once they’ve completed the foundation programme with the appropriate grades.


Additionally, all our fashion programmes are constantly reviewed and updated in conjunction with Amsterdam Fashion Academy’s industry board; ensuring our programme materials and practises remain cutting-edge and relevant in a fast-moving industry.


The Amsterdam Fashion Academy is based in the heart of Amsterdam, a cool, creative and multicultural European city. Our campus building provides a beautiful and inspirational space for you learn the skills you need to fashion your future.


All our Foundation Diploma students get free access to Microsoft Teams, WGSN and online library Perlego to help with their studies.

Semester 1


Fashion Business Awareness

Within this module you will explore your business understanding alongside your creativity. This module focuses on showing you what the fashion industry looks like in relation to job roles and market levels but also how it functions practically. You are encouraged to develop an entrepreneurial and ethical approach to identifying gaps in the market.


Fashion Media & Visualisation 

This module is taught in both semesters and focuses on communicating ideas effectively for the development of a fashion portfolio. You will explore and develop skills using a range of different media and fashion illustration techniques.


Over the course of the year, you will develop personalised illustrative styles and learn to create a portfolio that is distinct to you while gaining knowledge of the relevant industry tools and materials.


Ideas Exploration for Design 

This module will introduce you to key concepts in visual arts to develop your sensitivity to and awareness of fashion design. Students will be encouraged to explore experimental design development techniques to create ideas of silhouette, colour and fabrication within a capsule collection. The fundamental principles of design will be introduced through a series of workshops, which include: research, drawing, draping and collage.


Professional Development 

Over the course of two semesters, this module gives you the opportunity to engage in a wide variety of briefs that will enhance your skills in multiple areas.


This module is designed to underpin the other modules by supporting your understanding of professional practices. You will be given the opportunity to work in groups to develop networking and team building skills and undertake live project briefs with industry practitioners.


Semester 2


Go-To-Market/ Branding Basics 

This module is split into two classes; one focusing on the development of a personal business plan and the other focused on the topic of fashion branding. These sessions will require you to expand on the fundamental skills you have gained in semester 1 to create both a viable market focused business plan and zine.


Materials, Techniques and Processes 

This module introduces you to the fundamentals of textile design. You will learn the basics of fabric construction and begin to create your own fabrics and samples, which can be a mix of conventional and unconventional with regard to aesthetics and function.


Alongside textile development, you will enhance your draping and pattern cutting skills by producing an item of your own design.


Fashion Media & Visualisation 


Professional Development 

Step 1: Fill out the Request for Information form or sign up to an Open Day;

Step 2: We will send you more details by email and we will schedule a call or meeting with you;

Step 3: After the call or meeting, we will send you by email the Application form;

Step 4: Submit the application form; letter of motivations, secondary school diploma or transcript of grades or proof of enrolment. A portfolio is not requested.

Please be informed that we are not legally able to sponsor non-EEA students for a study visa. Applicants must have an EEA passport (27 EU member states; Iceland; Liechtenstein; Norway; Switzerland) or Dutch resident permit to study in the Foundation Diploma in Fashion. If you don’t meet this requirement, please check our 3-month Fast-Track option.


If you don’t meet the entry requirements for a Bachelor’s degree programme, then you can apply to the Foundation Diploma in Fashion (level 3).


You can apply to the Foundation Diploma in Fashion even if you meet the entry requirements for a Bachelor’s degree, but you want to gain more skills and knowledge before or are unsure whether studying a Bachelor’s degree in Fashion Design or in Fashion Business.


The Foundation Diploma in Fashion will give you direct access onto our Bachelor’s degree programmes.


You need to be at least 16 years old.



  • It is not required only if you apply to the Foundation Diploma in Fashion, but feel free to submit it if you have one.
  • Students applying to the Foundation Diploma in Fashion will be asked to complete an assignment.

Application fee: € 300

The application fee is due at the moment of application and is non-refundable unless the Amsterdam Fashion Academy won’t accept you in the programme. This is a one-time fee, so you only need to pay it during the process of admission.


Tuition fee: € 10.250

A deposit (20% of the tuition fee) is required after your acceptance and before the 29th of March, 2024. The remaining amount must be paid before the 15th of July 2024, or according to the payment plan agreed previously.


Payment Plans


Option 1 (no surcharge)

  • 20% payment before 29th of March, 2024
  • 80% payment before 15th of July, 2024

Option 2 (+3% surcharge)

  • 20% payment before 29th of March, 2024
  • 40% payment before 15th of July, 2024
  • 40% payment before 15th of January, 2025

Option 3 (+5% surcharge)

  • 20% payment before 29th of March, 2024
  • 20% payment before 15th of July, 2024
  • 20% payment before 15th of July, 2024
  • 20% payment before 15th of January, 2025
  • 20% payment before 15th of April, 2025


The Amsterdam Fashion Academy is a non-governmental and non-subsidized institute.


This programme is not eligible to receive student finance (studiefinanciering) from DUO.


Fees are equal for Europen and non-European students.

Few spots left! Applications for the Academic year 2024-2025 are still open.

Fees & finance