Schools with Import-Export Degrees and Programs: How to Choose

Those interested in the effect that imports and exports have on local and national economies can pursue an associate, bachelor's or master's degree in international business through a 2-year or 4-year school. Specialized training in importing and exporting is available through a few certificate programs.

How to Select an Import-Export School

Businesses that import and export must plan, finance and arrange the transportation of goods while abiding by international regulations and fee structures. Professionals who want to expand their knowledge and those looking to engage in international trade can find colleges and universities across the U.S. that offer import-export programs at various levels.

Students interested in commerce programs may want to keep these considerations in mind:

  • Students who are new to the field of international business will benefit from an undergraduate degree in business administration augmented with international relations courses and study-abroad opportunities.
  • Working professionals can enroll in a certificate program specifically to learn about the import-export business.
  • Study-abroad programs can provide networking opportunities as well as cultural awareness.
  • Some programs include training for certification, such as the National Association of Small Business International Trade Educators' Global Business Professional credentialing exam.

Import-Export Program Overviews

Certificate Programs

Certificate programs are aimed at working professionals seeking additional, specialized training. Some require students to be enrolled in a degree program simultaneously. A review of prerequisites is recommended prior to application. Certificate programs usually consist of about 12-15 credit hours. Some programs require a practicum. Coursework includes:

  • Introduction to international trade
  • Global logistics management
  • Principles of importing and exporting
  • Global supply chain management

Associate Degree Programs

Though there is no import-export associate degree, many business administration and international trade degree programs offer specialization in import-export procedures along with coursework in business and cultural studies. Associate degree programs can also help working professionals update their knowledge of import-export regulations. Coursework can include:

  • Import/export strategies
  • Finance
  • Economics
  • International legal environment
  • World cultures

Bachelor's Degree Programs

Business administration degree programs may appeal to students interested in the wider business world. Many of these programs offer electives and concentrations in the import-export field. Those interested specifically in trading can pursue a degree in international studies. Depending upon the program, coursework can include:

  • Global studies
  • Modern languages
  • Accounting
  • International law
  • International marketing

Master's Degree Programs

Applicable master's degree programs include those in international business administration and international policy management. Some graduates of master's degree programs become employed at the managerial level, while others take on entrepreneurial pursuits. Some programs offer courses on weekends or online. Programs can typically be completed within two years by full-time students. Coursework can include:

  • World politics
  • Strategic negotiation
  • Global trade policy
  • Foundations of global business
  • Cross-cultural negotiations

Top 10 International Business Schools

College/University Institution Type
University of South Carolina 4-year, Public
New York University 4-year, Private not-for-profit
University Southern California 4-year, Private not-for-profit
University of Pennsylvania 4-year, Private not-for-profit
University of California - Berkeley 4-year, Public
Florida International University 4-year, Public
St. Louis University 4-year, Private not-for-profit
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor 4-year, Public
Georgetown University 4-year, Private not-for-profit
San Diego State University 4-year, Public

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