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Institut Français de la Mode launches its first ever online fashion course on FutureLearn

LONDON, UK: Institut Français de la Mode (IFM) has launched its first ever online fashion course on FutureLearn, Europe’s leading social learning platform.

The course; ‘Understanding Fashion: from Business to Culture’, offers a dual approach to fashion, both as a cultural phenomenon and as a creative industry. It is led by Professor Benjamin Simmenauer, who teaches fashion theory and brand strategy at Institut Français de la Mode but also includes exclusive input from the world’s biggest designers, including Paul Smith, Simon Porte Jacquemus, Christelle Kocher, and the CEOs of Chanel, LVMH Fashion Group, Yves Saint Laurent and Hermès.

The course is taught over four weeks and is primarily aimed at marketing students and fashion professionals but can easily be followed by anyone interested in learning more about the industry from leading academics and fashion royalty.

Available to join now for free, this Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) provides an insight into the history of fashion while also exploring its place in today’s world. It also equips learners with key industry skills, including how to interpret fashion silhouettes and explain consumer behaviour.

Delivered in English and subtitled in several languages, the course is accessible to an international audience. It can be accessed on, Europe’s leading social learning platform which has a diverse community of over 10 million learners and an extensive portfolio of courses, programs and degrees.

Xavier Romatet, Dean of Institut Français de la Mode commented “This MOOC showcases the essence of our expertise, offering an analysis of fashion in all of its dimensions by the best academic experts and major players of the fashion industry”.

The course is also supported by DEFI and the director general, Clarisse Reille, shared her excitement “to support educational innovation in fashion and share French expertise with an international audience.”

Benjamin Simmenauer, Professor at Institut Français de la Mode, commented: “We are extremely excited to be launching this MOOC on FutureLearn. The platform allows students from all over the world to form a community; interact with each other, approach each module at their own pace, and ask us questions along the way.”

Similarly, Nigel Smith, MD of courses and learning at FutureLearn, said: ‘Institut Français de la Mode are pioneers in fashion management education and we’re delighted they’ve chosen to work with us. Our fashion courses are always extremely popular and we have no doubt that our learners will enjoy exploring the resounding cultural impact of the fashion industry as well as taking away very real skills from the course, something that both IFM and FutureLearn are passionate about.”

About Institut Français de la Mode 

As of 2019, Institut Français de la Mode brings together Ecole de la chambre syndicale de la couture parisienne, founded in 1927 and recognized for the excellence of its training in couture savoir-faire, and IFM, founded in 1986 and a pioneer in fashion management education.

Institut Français de la Mode is a higher education institution, a training centre for apprentices, a provider of executive education, as well as a centre of expertise for the textiles, fashion and luxury industries. It provides educational programs from vocational training to doctoral level, by cross-fertilizing design, management and craftsmanship.

Institut Français de la Mode is a member of HESAM Université, of the Conférence des Grandes Ecoles and of the International Foundation of Fashion Technology Institutes (IFFTI). It is supported by the French Ministry of Economy. It is recognized by the French Ministry of Higher Education.

About FutureLearn

FutureLearn is a leading social learning platform formed in December 2012 by The Open University and is now jointly owned by The Open University and The SEEK Group. FutureLearn has over ten million people signed up worldwide. FutureLearn uses design, technology and partnerships to create enjoyable, credible and flexible online courses as well as undergraduate and postgraduate degrees that improve working lives. It partners with over a quarter of the world’s top universities, as well as organisations such as Accenture, the British Council, CIPD, Raspberry Pi and Health Education England (HEE). It’s also involved in government-backed initiatives to address skills gaps such as The Institute of Coding and the National Centre for Computing Education.

To learn more, contact Institut Français de la Mode


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