Electronic commerce (e-commerce) has changed the way companies provide their products and services to consumers. Online classes and programs in e-commerce or e-business are designed to prepare students for handling these changes effectively and efficiently in the business world. Students can find distance learning options at many schools, including four-year universities and private online institutions. These programs can be completed entirely online.
While schools may offer e-commerce courses that students can take individually, many times these classes are included in a bachelor's or master's program. Degrees that might contain e-business coursework include those in business administration, Internet technologies, marketing and e-commerce technology. Some online bachelor's programs require applicants to have a certain number of undergraduate credits while prospective graduate students must have a bachelor's degree. In both cases, schools might require students to have related work experience.
In online programs that include e-commerce coursework, distance learners typically study business theory, relevant technologies, business law and business writing. Courses in economics and sociology might be included in addition to general education classes in order to provide a well-rounded curriculum. Once students get to the e-business program coursework, they likely will study the following topics:
The Basics of E-Commerce
In this course, students are introduced to the applications of managerial techniques as they relate to Internet technology. Students will learn to apply management principles to electronic business transactions including those from business-to-business, business-to-consumer and intra-business commercial projects. Students also learn how to leverage technology to enhance the business process.
Implications of E-Business
In this class, students learn how e-business affects the economy and society in general. Students learn how to create a strong brand for the online marketplace and global economy.
Interface Design for E-Business Transactions
Since e-business transactions are conducted over the Web, students need to be proficient at creating effective interfaces. Students will learn how to construct an interface and develop an effective, easy-to-navigate website and the basics of website and interface design and layout. Additionally, study will focus on an analysis of an e-commerce project's viability in a particular e-business model.
Online classes offer the flexibility of pursuing higher education while working full-time or fulfilling other obligations. Lectures may be uploaded to a course management system like Blackboard or made available as videos. Students will log in to course management systems to access course materials, submit assignments and communicate with classmates at a time that's convenient for them. Discussion boards and chat rooms are common methods of class interaction.
Individuals looking to deepen their understanding of the role e-commerce plays in modern business can pursue online classes in this field. These courses can be completed as part of broader business degrees at the bachelor's and master's levels.