Apparel Technical Designers are the link between design and production as they transform a sketch into the full technical package required for manufacturing a product in quantity. This George Brown College graduate certificate program prepares graduates with apparel technical design skills for positions in the apparel industry. Graduates of the Apparel Technical Design program in Toronto will have the skills to design and complete a collection using market analysis, trend research and computer-aided drafting and product lifecycle management technology. Quality and costing analysis will inform design choices as the full product specification package is completed and as collection projects are manufactured in an apparel manufacturing lab facility using appropriate and efficient manufacturing techniques.

A female student smiling in front of a mannequin.
Two hands holding a piece of cloth.

Overview

Program name
Apparel Technical Design
Code
F414
Experiential learning
Field education is embedded in the program. Students will be required to connect with an industry employer where they can complete 160 hours of field education in semester 3.
Duration
1 year (3 semesters)
Starting month
September
Credential
Ontario College Graduate Certificate
Method of study
FT

Year of Study

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Program Availability

Domestic students
Sept. 2018 Closed
Jan. 2019 N/A
May 2019 N/A
International students
Sept. 2018 Closed
Jan. 2019 N/A
May 2019 N/A

Full Description

Apparel Technical Designers are the link between design and production as they transform a sketch into a full technical package ready for manufacturing a product in quantity. This one-year Apparel Technical Design graduate certificate program in Toronto prepares fashion designers with apparel technical design skills for positions in the apparel industry.

Graduates will have the skills to design and complete a collection using market research, trend analysis, and computer-aided drafting and product lifecycle management technology. Quality and costing analysis will inform design choices as the full product specification package is completed and as collection projects are manufactured in an apparel manufacturing lab facility using appropriate and efficient manufacturing techniques.

Designers with solid patternmaking, grading, textile, illustration and construction skills will advance their knowledge to manage the complexity of writing detailed technical specifications, refining garment fit and sourcing components in pre-production, to achieve production-ready samples and technical packages. Graduates will attain the expertise required to anticipate and solve manufacturing issues, be able to maximize quality and minimize cost, consider sustainable options and be more prepared to launch future collections through experiencing the full cycle of designing and manufacturing a collection.

Two female fashion students looking at a laptop

Experiential Learning

Field education is embedded in the program. Students will be required to connect with an industry employer where they can complete 160 hours of field education in semester 3.

Your Field Study options

Field education is embedded in the program. Students will be required to connect with an industry employer where they can complete 160 hours of field education in semester three.

Program Standards and Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Conceptualize and design apparel collections using target market research to prepare for product development aimed at target consumer.
  2. Develop production-ready patterns using computer software and grade, alter and create markers to prepare for manufacture of collection samples.
  3. Manage the steps of a product development process using product lifecycle management tools and software.
  4. Select source materials and manufacturing techniques to align with collection quality and cost requirements.
  5. Develop and communicate product specifications to minimize production time, cost and errors.
  6. Estimate manufacturing resources (e.g., labour, time and materials) to inform design decisions and schedule production timelines.
  7. Review and correct garment fit and apply adjustments to production patterns to ensure garment appearance and comfort ease allowances are appropriate to target market sizing specifications while maintaining design integrity.

Required Courses

SEMESTER 1

semester 1 courses
CodeCourse Name
FAMP1001Apparel Manufacturing
FAMP1005Garment Fit and Pattern Adjustment
FAMP1010Pattern Drafting Software
FAMP1015Apparel Preproduction Management
FAMP1020Collection Technical Development
FAMP1025Design and Product Development Technology

SEMESTER 2

semester 2 courses
CodeCourse Name
FAMP2001Pattern Drafting Software 2
FAMP2005Product Development Process Lab
FAMP2010Production Management Studio
FAMP2020Quality and Costing
FAMP2025Field Education Preparation

SEMESTER 3

semester 3 courses
CodeCourse Name
FAMP2015Apparel Design and Finishing
FAMP2026Field Education Placement 

Detailed course outlines

The Industry

The Canadian apparel industry is a major economic sector that is largely concentrated in urban centres like Toronto. The industry is comprised of manufacturers, vertically integrated retailers who develop their own product, private label, contractors, design labels, logistics, wholesale distributors and retailers. Canadian brands have found success in many specialty product categories, such as workwear, athletic gear, bridal, outerwear and knitwear.

While women's wear is the largest segment of the industry, men's wear is the fastest growing segment. Current Canadian industry trends are influenced by global shifts such as changes in trade agreements, reshoring manufacturing to North America, adoption of technology, fast fashion versus local and artisanal, concern for environmental and social sustainability, mass customization and development of a skilled workforce to remain competitive.

Whether companies manufacture offshore or locally, they require the services of a Technical Designer to translate designs to products that can be manufactured. The development of clear, accurate and complete technical packages is critical in order to communicate product characteristics to factories that often operate in other languages and to ensure expectations of quality are met. As production shifts back to Canada, the Technical Designer role provides an opportunity to improve lead time to market, reduce errors and therefore cost, evaluate and correct, and maintain greater control over product development.

clothes rack

Career Options

Graduates of this program may choose to pursue job opportunities such as:

  • Technical Designer
  • Fit and Spec Technician
  • Designer
  • Apparel Quality Control Technician
  • Garment Technician
  • Tech Pack Coordinator
  • Computerized Pattern Maker/Fit Specialist
  • Fashion Technical Designer
  • Technical Coordinator
  • Product Development Manager

Your Career

Technical Designers work with fashion design teams and manufacturing staff to develop and monitor technical standards and specifications for garments. This process includes finalizing production-ready patterns, solving fit issues, size grading, sourcing and build of materials list completion, construction details and sequence, setting quality standards, and communication of the technical details and changes through the entire production process.

Technical designers in smaller companies may be required to be conversant across all parts of the process, whereas in larger companies they may be specialists in one aspect.

Technical design is required for all categories of apparel production, regardless of where the product is manufactured. As companies strive to compete globally, they require Technical Designers who are able to utilize technology and manufacturing knowledge for precise, accurate, complete and timely communication of product details to ensure speed to market, quality standards and management of cost.

apparel tech designer

Tuition

$7,551.00 *

Additional Cost

* Amounts listed are the total of tuition, materials, student service and ancillary fees for the first three semesters of programs starting in fall 2017. Fees are subject to change for programs starting in fall 2018 and at later dates.

International students: Visit the International Fees and Related Costs page for more information.

Admission Requirements

  • Diploma or Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion Design with a minimum program GPA of 2.7

English Language Proficiency

Applicants with International transcripts where English proficiency results are not supplied must test at the College level in the George Brown College English assessment to be considered.

Please visit georgebrown.ca/englishproficiency for more details.

Course Exemptions

College or university credits may qualify you for course exemptions. Please visit georgebrown.ca/transferguide for more information.

International (Visa) Students

Visit the International Admissions page for more information.

Apply To

Contact Us

School of Fashion Studies

Phone: 416-415-5000, ext. 4840

Email: fashionstudies@georgebrown.ca

For more information about George Brown College, you may also call the Contact Centre at 415-415-2000 (TTY 1-877-515-5559) or long distance 1-800-265-2002.

Visit Our Campus

Situated in the heart of downtown Toronto at 63 Regent Park Blvd., Fashion Exchange (FX) is a satellite location of the School of Fashion Studies. FX is more than a learning lab; it's also a production facility readily accessible to local designers and fashion producers. It is located on a pedestrian-friendly street that has become the cultural heart of the community. At Fashion Exchange, you will be immersed in day-to-day apparel manufacturing operations and have the opportunity to network with industry members.

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    George Brown College is continually striving to improve its programs and their delivery. The information contained in this calendar is subject to change without notice. It should not be viewed as a representation, offer or warranty. Students are responsible for verifying George Brown College admission, graduation, and fee requirements as well as any requirements of outside institutions, industry associations, or other bodies that may award additional designations concurrently with, or after completion of, a George Brown College program.