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Should I Earn a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Fashion Merchandising?

Majors Overview May 7, 2014

A Fashion Merchandising bachelor’s degree program will provide students with the basic education needed to display, buy, sell, and market fashion goods and textiles. Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree programs in Fashion Marketing combine technology and fashion trends with business principles.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree Programs in Fashion Merchandising

Students enrolled in Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree programs in Fashion Merchandising are taught both the practical and the creative aspects of the fashion industry. They gain a grasp of the technical features and tools of fashion design, as well as the business acumen they would need to buy and sell garments in the current global marketplace.

A four-year Fashion Merchandising degree program covers various subjects related to fashion, including business principles, computer skills, retail management, textiles, art, advertising, fashion design, fashion merchandising, and textile design.

Coursework in most degree programs comb

ines classroom lectures and studio or laboratory experience with internship participation by students. A related minor, such as management, criticism, fashion history, business, or marketing, is also chosen by many fashion merchandising majors.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a GED certificate or a high school diploma, in addition to completing general education courses such as English, art, history, composition, and college mathematics.


Coursework in a Fashion Merchandising program is a combination of marketing and business principles oriented to the fashion industry. Coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Surface design
•Retail management
•Mass merchandising
•Marketing principles
•Fashion buying
•Visual merchandising
•Advanced textiles

Career Outlook

Those who graduate from the program can choose from various career options with design firms, wholesalers, and fashion retailers and aim for positions such as:

•Fashion human relations manager
•Product developer
•Retail manager
•Fashion editor
•Fashion director
•Fashion buyer
•Fashion designer
•Showroom sales assistant
•Fashion merchandiser
•Textile merchandiser

Job and Wage Outlook

A slower-than-normal job growth rate of 9% has been predicted for wholesale and retail buyers – other than those dealing in farm products – over the 2010-2020 decade (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)). In May 2012, these professionals took home an average annual wage of $58,210.

Continuing Education Options

Graduates of the bachelor’s program can seek continued education by earning a Master of Science (M.S.) in Fashion Design and Merchandising or a Master of Science (M.S.) in Textiles, Fashion Merchandising, and Design. They can acquire a profound grasp of the fashion industry, including trends, buyers, designers, and major players. The completion of a research paper or a thesis project may also be required of students. Such projects involve further examination of a particular area of the fashion merchandising field, such as textiles technologies or buyer trends in the new millennium.

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