The Competencies of Fashion Design Teachers in Public Institutions of Higher Learning in Nairobi County, Kenya

Isika Juliet Kaindi, Keren Mburugu, Everlyn Nguku, Almadi Obere


The sample size comprised five heads of department, 32 teachers and 266 students. The data was collected using questionnaires and interview schedules. Both qualitative and quantitative data analysis techniques were used. The results revealed that very few public institutions of higher learning use real fabric draping for design. Majority of the teachers were not trained in the area of fashion design. Chi-square analysis results yielded a fairly strong relationship between use of real fabric draping for design and pattern development technique taught (V= 0 .646; p < 0.0001*) and sources of curriculum (V= 0.623; p < 0.0001*). Use of real fabric draping for design had a weak association with teachers area of training (V = 0. 018; p < 0.006). It was concluded that the teachers area of training was not highly associated with the use of real fabric draping. This may be due to the fact that most fashion design teachers were trained in clothing / garment design and are able to understand the technique. Pattern development technique taught and sources of curriculum and teachers area of training are the key issues associated with the use of real fabric draping for design in public institutions of higher learning. This paper recommends that public institutions of higher learning should ensure that teachers engaged have the adequate skills to teach real fabric draping for design as a practical unit. This would ensure that the students acquire pertinent skills imparted as prescribed in the curriculum.

Real fabric draping involves the use of sample textile, fabric or cloth to make patterns or garments on a model or dress form stands manually. The technique is suitable for ready-to-wear and couture garment designs and has numerous advantages, including satisfaction with garment fit, accurate proportions of fabric division and reduced time waste. Numerous studies in Kenya have been carried out on the subject of Home Science. However, little documentation exists on real fabric draping for design in Kenya. This paper anchors its discussion on the findings of a study that sought to assess the usage of real fabric in draping by teachers in public institutions of higher learning and fashion designers in Nairobi County, Kenya, and assesses the competencies of fashion design teachers in Nairobi County, Kenya. It also examines the relationship between the use of real fabric draping for design, on the one hand, and the teachers area of training on the other hand. The study was guided by the activity theory and pedagogic activity system structure. Employing a cross-sectional survey research design, five public institutions of higher learning were purposively selected.


Competencies; Fashion Design Teachers; Public Institutions; Higher Learning; Nairobi County; Kenya.

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