London College of Fashion was awarded British Psychological Society’s 2016 Innovative Accredited Psychology Programme Award for MSc Applied Psychology in Fashion, an award that recognises innovative and creative design or delivery of psychology programmes.

Prof. Carolyn Mair, the Course Leader for MSc Applied Psychology in Fashion and MA Psychology for Fashion Professionals, is to be presented with an award for Innovation in Psychology Programmes 2016 at the British Psychological Society’s (BPS) annual conference next year. The award recognises her work developing the first and only course in the world to apply psychology specifically in the context of fashion. The course was a joint winner with University of Edinburgh Psychology Department.

Dr. Carolyn Mair Ph.D., CPsychol, FBPsS, FHEA with Professor Caryn Franklin at the 2nd LCF Psychology in Fashion Conference.

LCF News spoke to Dr. Carolyn Mair Ph.D. after the announcement to find out more about the award and what it means for students.

Congratulations on MSc Applied Psychology in Fashion winning the BPS Innovative Accredited Programme Award 2016. What thoughts were going through your head when you heard the news and what does it mean for the course?

Thank you! My thoughts were this is great news! It was a lot of work to put the nomination together and as we were runner-up in 2015, I was very keen to win this year! For the course, it really unpins its creativity and innovation. It means it’s really different from any other course (which we know as the 2 Masters here are still the only ones in the world). It also means that it is highly valued by the British Psychological Society. This is really important for Psychologists as the BPS is the professional body for Psychologists in the UK with approximately 60,000 members. Accredited courses are by definition high quality as the BPS accreditation is a ‘benchmark of quality’ and this award says not only is the course high quality, it is also innovative in a meaningful way.

The panel was particularly impressed how the course broke new ground in arts and science. Why was it so important for you to link fashion and psychology together?

I love fashion and the dynamic, creative and aesthetic nature of the industry. I’m fascinated by the concept of creativity and understanding how this operates psychologically. Fashion is our second skin. It is part of our identity and becomes part of the self. Fashion is also a fantastic vehicle to support change for the betterment of everyone. But there’s more to the psychology of fashion than just the clothes we wear. Human behaviour matters across all fashion industries from design, through production, manufacture, marketing, retail, consumption, and disposal. A psychologist can design and implement effective behaviour change programs that really do change behaviour. Psychology can help support people to become more resilient and so when they face adversity, they have resources they can draw on.  This is particularly important in the changing and unpredictable world we live in. In my opinion, there has never been a more necessary time to apply psychology in the broad context of fashion.

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