Merchandising managers are skilled at retail and wholesale sales, product development and marketing. Merchandising management associate's programs are widely available online. Most courses in these degree programs can be completed online, but many programs do require internships that students must complete in person. Degrees are also available at the bachelor's and master's level.
Courses in merchandising management cover the principles of retailing, marketing, managing inventory and store operations. Students communicate with instructors and submit assignments via e-mail. High-speed Internet connectivity is a must to ensure proper viewing of multimedia files and to allow students and professors to interact in online forums. Some classes may require students to have access to a scanner or digital camera.
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Associate's Degree in Merchandising Management
Online merchandising management associate's degree programs teach students about color and design theory, consumer behavior and showroom display concepts. There are no enrollment prerequisites typically required for these programs other than a high school diploma or general education diploma (GED).
Merchandising Management Undergraduate Requirements
Online associate's degree programs in merchandising management may be completed in two years or less. The distance learning curriculum typically parallels the on-campus coursework. Even though the classes may be taken entirely online, some programs include internships that are completed at approved stores or other facilities. Distance learning merchandising management courses are taken using virtual classroom software, such as Blackboard or ANGEL.
In addition to general education coursework, students enrolled in online merchandising management associate's degree programs take classes in retailing, accounting and management.
This distance learning merchandising management course trains students in new shopping technologies and consumer behavior. Students also learn about sales productivity, customer satisfaction and managing retail businesses.
Students enrolled in this online course explore inventory maintenance and seasonal merchandising. Additional topics of study include balancing inventories among multiple stores and creating financial plans.
This online merchandising management class introduces students to the concepts of target marketing, product selection, pricing and distribution. Students are taught to conduct marketing research and to effectively communicate with consumers.
Store Operations Management
Students enrolled in this distance learning course analyze retail operations and management concepts. Emphasis is placed on management practices developed by industry executives.
Students who have successfully completed an online merchandising management associate's degree program may find employment supervising buyers and department managers in a variety of retail establishments. Pay may be determine by an employees' education and experience. As of October 2016, Payscale.com reported a salary range of $25,971 to $92,728 for merchandising managers.
Continuing Education Information
Students who have completed an online associate's degree program in merchandising management may want to continue their education with a bachelor's degree in merchandising or retail management. Students may choose specializations in fashion, music or visual merchandising. Master's degree programs in merchandising are also available.
Pursuing a degree in merchandising management will expose students to courses in inventory, marketing, retail, and store operations management, regardless if the program is online or on campus. Graduates can expect to find jobs in the retail and management industry.