• Fashion Studies (Minor)

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  • Overview

    The Fashion Studies minor is offered through Parsons Paris and Parsons School of Design, on the university’s New York City campus. 

    This minor addresses the cultural significance of fashion with reference to self-fashioning, embodiment, modernity, and globalization through the study of visual and material culture and written texts. Interpretation of fashion as visual and material culture enables students to gain a broad understanding and critical awareness of its meanings as objects, images, and cultural practices that position people in time and space. Introductory-level courses encourage a lifelong understanding of fashion, while upper-level courses offer more advanced and specialized knowledge.

    The Fashion Studies minor requires successful completion of 18 credits across six subject areas, as outlined in the chart below.

    Course availability may vary from semester to semester. Some courses may be in development and offered at a later time. Students seeking to pursue alternative coursework to fulfill the minor should consult with their advisors.


    The table below shows  courses offered at Parsons Paris. Visit the New School website to view course offerings on the Parsons campus in New York City that fulfill the requirements of the Fashion Studies minor.  

    Subject AreaSample CoursesCredits
    Fashion HistoryAPFS 2001/2002 History of Fashion Lecture/Recitation
    APDS 2001/2002 History of Design Lecture/Recitation
    MethodologyAPFS 2011 Intro to Fashion Studies Lecture/Recitation
    APDS 2011 Intro to Design Studies Lecture/Recitation
    APFS 4500 Advanced Research Seminar: Fashion
    2000 LevelAny APFS 2000-level course
    Any PLFS 2000-level course (online or mobility semester)
    3000 LevelAny APFS 3000-level course
    Any PLFS 3000-level course (online or mobility semester)
    4000 LevelAny APFS 4000-level course
    Any PLFS 4000-level course (online or mobility semester)
    Studio PracticeSee advisor for qualifying courses3

    Learning Outcomes

    A student who has completed this minor should be able to demonstrate:

    • Competence in thinking, speaking, and writing clearly and effectively and communicating with precision, cogency, and rhetorical force
    • A strong knowledge of the tools and techniques of scholarship (active research and the writing of analytical and critical essays should continue throughout the program)
    • An understanding of the social, cultural, and global dimensions of fashion and of key issues and debates linked with fashion and its study
    • In-depth knowledge of the evolution of changing perspectives on and theories of fashion and the dressed body in the 20th and early 21st centuries.
    • An understanding of the various research methodologies and practices used in fashion studies, including ethnography and interviews, analysis of material and visual culture, and archival materials and a basic understanding of the importance of primary sources for research 
    • Critical and informed awareness of fashion as a potential agent of change and an understanding of the relationship between fashion and gender, race, class, labor, sustainability, and ethics, issues central to fashion studies
    • In-depth knowledge of the multiple scholarly disciplines that have informed fashion and our understanding of fashion and an understanding of the relevance of fields related to fashion studies, such as art history, material culture, anthropology, and sociology
    • The ability to articulate an informed understanding of the social, cultural, and global dimensions of fashion by analyzing fashion using a variety of methodological traditions, styles, and practices


    Minors are available to all undergraduate students at The New School. 

    Parsons Paris students should speak with a Student Success advisor to define pathways to completion, including courses offered in the Parsons Paris MA in Fashion Studies, in New York City, or online.

    For questions regarding this minor’s curriculum, including requests for course substitutions, please contact Mev Luna at lunam1@newschool.edu.

    How to Declare or Change a Minor

    General guidelines for declaring a minor are available here. Current students can declare or change a minor by logging in to my.newschool.edu, clicking on the Academics tab, and then clicking on the link to Major/Minor Declarations.

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