There are over 4000 Higher Education Institutions in Europe offering a wide range of courses at Bachelor, Master’s, and Doctorate levels. Many of these learning institutions offer English as the language of education for their degree programs. Universities in Europe welcome foreign students and offer the same teaching excellence as colleges and universities in the United States.

Fashion Design is one of the Bachelor programs offered at numerous universities in Europe. The countries of France, Italy, and Spain seem synonymous with fashion. Examples are:

  • Paris College of Art-France
  • Conde Nast College of Fashion & Design-United Kingdom
  • Ferrari Fashion School-Italy
  • ESDI Design School-Spain
  • Raffles Milano-International and Design School-Italy

There are choices to suit your desire to earn a bachelor’s or master’s degree in Europe in the fashion industry. However, there are rules and requirements that you must meet before packing your school supplies.

We will look at the aforementioned European countries, with respect to the mandates to attend university in the respective country.

United Kingdom

The UK welcomes international students from all around the world, but there is a rigorous visa process you must follow. It is important to be aware of the entry regulations that affect international students in the UK. If you are coming to the UK for the main purpose of studying a program that is more than six months in length, you must apply for a Tier 4 visa in your home country before traveling.

A separate process involves the applications to UK universities made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Simply fill in a UCAS application form on the UCAS website. You should apply well before the deadline according to the UCAS deadlines. There are five steps to the application process: (1) Registration, (2) Find a course/major, (3) Find a university, (4) Complete Application Form, (5) Submit and wait for a reply.

International students from a non-EU country can submit an application to UCAS at any time between 1 September and 30 June in the year preceding the academic year that the studies commence.


Any student attending university in Spain for more than three months needs a visa. Obtaining a visa may take up to 6 weeks. However, sometimes things can happen where a VISA may take longer for an extraneous reason.

If you are not from a European country and looking to earn your Bachelor’s degree it is necessary that you have a recognition from your high school. This recognition certifies that you have attained the necessary certification in compliance with requirements in Spain. The recognition can be obtained at a Spanish Embassy. The Embassy will provide you with a Volante Accreditation which can be used to apply at the universities of your choice. After being granted the Volante Acreditativo it is necessary that you register for a Spanish University entrance exam.


The country is home to one of the oldest universities in the world, the University of Bologna, which also initiated the university system that we know today. Before applying to a university in Italy, you will need to check if your qualifications make you eligible for higher education studies. You should follow these steps:

  1. Contact the university that interests you.
  2. The university will give you a feedback regarding your eligibility; if you meet the qualifications/standards, then you will have to submit a pre-application request to the Italian embassy or consulate in your area.
  3. The Italian embassy or consulate will submit your application and documents to the Italian higher education institution you chose to apply.
  4. The Italian embassy or consulate publishes a list of admitted candidates usually at the end of August.

If your academic program in Italy is 91 days or more, you are required to obtain a student visa from the Italian Government. You must apply for your student visa through the Italian Consulate with jurisdiction over the state of your permanent residence or university.


Before you can work on earning a degree in any subject in France, you first need to apply for admissions at the college or university of your choice. Transcripts must be provided from all institutions that you have attended in the past. This includes both high school transcripts as well as those from any colleges that you may have attended. It is also a requirement of French law to provide proof that you have enough money to cover all of the expenses you will incur while attending college.

The same requirements apply in France as other EU countries regarding the length of study. Beyond 90 days requires a student visa. This can only be obtained from a Visa Application Center (VAC) located in located in Washington DC, New Orleans, Houston, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami, Atlanta, and New York (the same cities in which the Consulate General are located). All applicants must appear in person at a VAC, where biometric data will be collected.


The prospect of attending one of the fashion schools in Europe may be irresistible for some. However, anticipate that the university application process plus the Visa requirement may take longer than you anticipate. Delays are inevitable.

Additional Resources

What Classes will I take in a Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion Design?

Where can I use my Degree in Fashion Design?

What is the Difference between a Degree in Fashion Design and Furniture Design?