BDS Distance Learning
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Distance Learning Certificate in Display & Visual Merchandising
“I have been researching VM courses online and this is the best I have come across so far” - Claire Pattinson

Our courses are designed to enable those who may not be in a position to attend a college based course to attain a range of display/visual merchandising (VM) skills. Our basic course covers elements of company image, balance, layout, production, props, lighting, interiors and scale drawing. In addition there are practical exercises to hone your all important hands-on abilities.
The course can be progressed in your own time and at your own pace with a tutor assigned to you for support when required. There are no term dates for this course, each student starts as soon as payment is received, whether payment is in full or by standing order.
There are no pressures to complete each module at certain dates, but the full course must be completed within two years from your date of enrolment.
You will have the responsibility of meeting deadlines you choose to set with your local retailer for your window design installations.
On successful completion of the course you will be awarded a certificate accredited by the BDS. This will be a valuable addition to your CV whether you are already working in the industry, looking for an extra qualification, or are keen to obtain a position in VM for the first time.

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Following recent difficulties with the registration process, this is now available again. If you still have issues then please contact BDS admin on +44 (0) 208 856 2030.

The British Display Society has decided to release the course material from its online courses for purchase to non students. This will allow individuals to use the material to improve their skills or suplement their existing course material.

Please register above and login for information about costs etc.




  Welcome to
BDS Distance Learning Courses
window display

A successful career in visual merchandising and retail display brings with it not only financial rewards but, possibly even more importantly, great job satisfaction. For a creative individual there can be nothing more rewarding than to stand back and view a finished store display which they have designed and built from scratch. Unless perhaps, it is the positive reaction to it from the store owners or managers and the public at large. The ultimate reward of course is the increased store traffic and sales that it generates.
For many people, such a career has started with a certificate of achievement awarded by the British Display Society – and has done for more than fifty years! Many of today’s top visual merchandisers, retail display practitioners, designers for museums and art galleries began their career by studying a BDS course and gaining a certificate. For many people the location of a college or the time required to attend and complete the course is not a practical proposition. This distance learning certification course has been designed to meet the needs of these people and is the result of demand from students of all ages.
On successfully completing the course, individuals will not only receive their BDS certificate but will be eligible to apply for membership to the Society.





Following on from the success of our online course, Visual Merchandising - the Basics, we are pleased to offer a more advanced VM course.

This course will be aimed at those who have some experience in the industry and wish to increase their skills. The course includes two realistic practical assignments as well as an introduction to perspective drawing, organising production, project costing, becoming self-employed and health & safety.

As with our basic course, students will be able to start at any time and complete assignments at their own pace to fit in with their existing commitments.

The cost of the course is £560 but we are offering a reduction of £100 to the first four students that register, on the understanding that they will be expected to feedback any problems that they encounter and that they may experience minor glitches.

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