Retail Merchandising Certificate and Degree Programs in Arizona

Research retail merchandising programs in Arizona, which currently has at least 13 schools offering programs. Read an overview of certificate and degree programs, tuition info and program options for 10 these schools and decide which program is right for you.

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Essential Information

In Arizona, retail merchandising programs are generally offered through colleges and community colleges. At these schools, students can choose certificate or associate's degree programs in retail management or fashion merchandising. There are also a few 4-year schools that offer Bachelor of Science degree programs in merchandising or retail.

Following are short overviews of 10 of the largest Arizona schools' programs, as well as a comparison table that highlights program offerings and tuition info.

Arizona Western College

Arizona Western College in Yuma offers a certificate program in retail management. Students can learn about staff supervision, marketing and accounting. Courses include business applications, computer information systems, management fundamentals, leadership, technical writing and communications. Throughout the program, students can develop retail management leadership skills.

Chandler-Gilbert Community College

Chandler-Gilbert Community College, situated in Chandler, offers a Certificate of Completion in Retail Management. This program can prepare students for management positions in the food industry and other related fields. Students take courses such as accounting principles, computer information systems, calculations for business, supervision techniques, merchandising and managing human resources. The college also offers an Associate in Applied Science program in retail management. It includes the same core courses as the certificate program, along with two additional accounting courses and 25 credits of general education courses.

Eastern Arizona College

Students can earn a Certificate of Proficiency in Retail Management online or on campus at Eastern Arizona College in Thatcher. This program is intended for employees of grocery stores, but anyone interested in retail management may enroll. Courses include communications, accounting, business math, retail management, human relations, computers, human communication, marketing and supervision. Graduates can seek management-level positions in retail.

Glendale Community College

The retail management certificate and Associate in Applied Science programs at Glendale Community College in Glendale can teach students the knowledge and skills needed to work in retail management. Students can learn business essentials and acquire the needed communication and management skills. The certificate and degree programs have the same core retail management courses. However, the associate's degree program requires students to take two additional accounting courses, as well as general education courses.

Mesa Community College

At Mesa Community College in Mesa, students can earn an Associate in Applied Science degree in fashion merchandising and design. Students explore the fashion industry, visual and display merchandising, clothing construction and textiles. They take required courses, along with electives, from the fashion merchandising, fashion design or fashion retailing track. The merchandising and retail tracks require an internship, and students must find their own internship positions. Program graduates can seek entry-level fashion merchandising jobs.

The college also offers a certificate program in retail sales manager, which includes courses in fashion merchandising, visual and display merchandising, fashion retail merchandising and fashion sales management. In addition, the school has an online Certificate of Completion in Retail Management and an Associate in Applied Science in Retail Management.

Northern Arizona University

Students enrolled in Flagstaff's Northern Arizona University can pursue a Bachelor of Science in Strategic Communication with an emphasis in merchandising. Merchandising courses include buying merchandise, evaluating apparel quality, merchandising planning and visual merchandising, as well as a class in promotional communication or advertising strategies. Students can also minor in merchandising if they are enrolled in a bachelor's program at the university. Core and elective course topics include targeting markets, controlling inventory, planning, buying and analyzing products.

Phoenix College

Students interested in retail merchandising can earn a certificate or an associate's degree in fashion merchandising or retail management from this Phoenix-based college. Graduates of the fashion merchandising program may look for positions in wholesale merchandising, visual display, store planning, management or retail buying. Those who complete a retail management program may find work in the food industry or the retail management field.

Pima Community College

Aspiring retail merchandisers in Tucson can attend Pima Community College. The school has several programs in retail merchandising, including an Associate of Arts in Retailing and Consumer Sciences, an Associate of Applied Science in Fashion Merchandising and certificate programs in retail management and fashion merchandising. The associate's degree program in retailing and consumer science allows graduates to transfer to a 4-year program. The other programs prepare graduates to enter the workforce.

Rio Salado College

Rio Salado College, situated in Tempe, offers a certificate program in retail management that prepares graduates to work in buying, merchandising and retailing. Topics covered include business human relations, leadership and management, business speech and marketing principles. Alternatively, students may enroll in an Associate in Applied Science program in retail management, which trains students to work in the field.

University of Arizona

The John and Doris Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences at the University of Arizona in Tucson offers a Bachelor of Science program in retailing and consumer sciences. Students complete pre-major and major courses, along with an internship. They study management and retail marketing concepts applicable to any retail business. Graduates may seek positions in areas like product development, planning, buying, visual merchandising and event management.

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type and Setting Retail Merchandising Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2015-2016)
Arizona Western College 4-year, public; small city Retail Management Certificate $2,540 in-state; $9,530 out-of-state*
Chandler-Gilbert Community College 2-year, public; large suburb Certificate of Completion in Retail Management,
Associate in Applied Science in Retail Management
$2,046 in-state; $7,830 out-of-state*
Eastern Arizona College 2-year, public; remote town Certificate of Proficiency in Retail Management $2,080 in-state; $9,580 out-of-state*
Glendale Community College 2-year, public; large suburb Certificate of Completion in Retail Management,
Associate in Applied Science in Retail Management
$2,046 in-state; $7,830 out-of-state*
Mesa Community College 2-year, public; large city Certificate of Completion in Retail Sales Manager,
Associate in Applied Science in Retail Management,
Associate in Applied Science in Fashion Merchandising and Design
$2,046 in-state; $7,830 out-of-state*
Northern Arizona University 4-year, public; small city Merchandising minor,
Bachelor of Science in Strategic Communication with an emphasis in merchandising
$10,358; $23,348, out-of-state*
Phoenix College 2-year, public; large city Certificate of Completion in Fashion Merchandising,
Certificate of Completion in Retail Management,
Associate in Applied Science in Fashion Merchandising,
Associate in Applied Science in Retail Management
$2,046 in-state; $7,830 out-of-state*
Pima Community College 2-year, public; large city Fashion Consumer Services Certificate,
Retail Management Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Fashion Consumer Services,
Associate of Arts in Retailing and Consumer Sciences
$1,974 in-state; $8,610 out-of-state*
Rio Salado College 2-year, public; midsize city Certificate of Completion in Retail Management,
Associate in Applied Science in Retail Management
$2,046 in-state; $7,830 out-of-state*
University of Arizona 4-year, public; large city Bachelor of Science in Retail and Consumer Sciences $11,403 in-state; $32,630 out-of-state*

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

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