Fashion Merchandising & Retailing - B.S.

The Fashion Merchandising & Retailing bachelor’s degree program prepares students for fashion and retail careers in areas such as retail sales management, fashion showroom management, executive store management, merchandise buying, visual merchandising, fashion marketing, fashion forecasting, fashion blogging, fashion promotion, and textile development. 

Upon completion of the program, graduates are expected to:

  • Apply the major concepts and skills related to the global fashion industry. 
  • Communicate effectively for diverse audiences, purposes and situations through a variety of professional methods as required in fashion and retailing industries.
  • Use industry resources to address contemporary issues in global fashion.
  • Apply profitability and analytical competencies necessary for careers in fashion merchandising and retailing.  
  • Develop targeted forecasts of the production and acquisition of consumer goods consistent with ethical business practices. 

Students may increase their skills learned in this degree program by utilizing such opportunities as directed experiential education, internships, or study abroad programs. These programs are tailored based on the student’s learning, interests and professional goals. Students are encouraged to network with industry professionals and explore career opportunities during industry site visits.

The Fashion Merchandising & Retailing degree program at the Providence and Charlotte campuses offers two specializations: Merchandise Buying and Fashion Marketing & Visual Merchandising.

The Merchandise Buying specialization (15 credits) is geared towards students interested in the strategic analytical side of the fashion business. It is designed to align with industry standards and complements the student's degree by developing expertise in the areas of merchandise allocation, buying, analysis and/or product development. 

Upon completion of the Merchandise Buying specialization (offered at the Providence and Charlotte campuses), students are expected to:

  • Apply merchandising competencies necessary for careers in product allocation and retail buying.

The Fashion Marketing & Visual Merchandising specialization (15 Credits) is designed for students considering a career in the creative side of merchandising. The specialization complements the student’s degree by developing expertise in the areas of public relations, visual merchandising, fashion promotion, social media marketing, and brand communications.

Upon completion of the Fashion Marketing & Visual Merchandising specialization (offered at the Providence and Charlotte campuses), students are expected to:

  • Apply visual design competencies required for creative careers in visual merchandising and fashion marketing.

Fashion Merchandising & Retailing

A four-year program leading to the bachelor of science degree

Business Foundations
ACCT1210Financial Accounting3
ACCT1220Managerial Accounting3
BUS1001Introduction to Business and Management3
BUS3010Business Analytics3
BUS4030Global Strategy Capstone3
FIT1040Spreadsheet Design for Business Solutions3
LAW2001The Legal Environment of Business I3
MGMT2001Human Resource Management3
MGMT2030Operations and Supply Chain Management I3
MRKT1001Marketing Foundations3
Major Courses
RTL1015Introduction to Retail and Fashion3
RTL2008The Textiles Industry3
RTL2122Retail and Fashion Lab4
RTL3240Retail Math3
RTL4050Strategic Planning in the Fashion Industry3
Major Electives
One RTL-designated course at the 2000 level or higher3
Applied/Experiential Learning
Choose 9 credits from the following:9
College of Business Internship Ic
Directed Experiential Education D
Study Abroad Sa
A&S Core Experience
Communications Foundation Courses 9
Rhetoric & Composition I
Rhetoric & Composition II
Communication Skills
Integrative Learning 6
Two ILS courses, one at the 2000 level, and one at the 4000 level
Arts and Humanities 6
Ethics: A Global Perspective
One course from ART, HIST, HUM, LIT, or REL
A Survey of College Mathematics (or higher, based on student's placement)
Statistics I
One course from BIO, CHM, PHY or SCI
Social Sciences 6
One course from ANTH, GEND, LEAD, PSCI, PSYC, RES or SOC
A&S Electives 6
Introduction to Fashion Writing
Free Electives #
15 credits selected from 1000-4999 numbered offerings within the university 15
Total Credits121.0

IcTypically, internships require a minimum of six credits. Students interested in a 9 or 12-credit internship can apply additional experiential learning and free elective credits, if available. Students are strongly encouraged to contact a faculty advisor before scheduling internship and free elective credits.

D Directed Experiential Education (DEE) opportunities are based on project availability with community partners and student eligibility. For more information, visit Experiential Education & Career Services (EE&CS). 

SaTo be eligible to count toward Applied/ Experiential Learning, a Study Abroad offering must meet certain requirements. Contact JWU Global to discuss eligible Study Abroad options for this degree program.

#  In addition to classes, free elective credits may be applied to a number of options such as internship, study abroad, Directed Experiential Education courses and courses in a specialization or minor as relevant. For Accelerated Master's program students, up to three graduate-level courses may apply. Students are strongly encouraged to contact a faculty advisor before scheduling free elective credits.

NOTE: Students must pass MATH0010 Pre-Algebra or have equivalent placement scores to enroll in required math course(s).

Note: Students must pass ENG0001 Writing Workshop or have equivalent placement scores to enroll in ILS 2000-level courses

Internships will be available but they will not be required. For online students who do not wish to register for an internship, 3000+ level college discipline-specific courses can be taken in place of the internship.

In collaboration with academic colleges across all JWU campuses, JWU Global Study Abroad programs offer a variety of international options for major, minor, arts and sciences, and elective credit at many affordable price points for students during the academic year, break periods, and summer. Faculty-led, exchange, affiliate, and direct-enroll programs range in duration from one week to a full semester or full year. Financial aid may be applied and scholarships are available. Visit the study abroad website for information, program descriptions and online applications. Where will you go?