An international business degree has the potential to propel your career to locations around the world.
If you have a head for business and an interest in other cultures, then an international business bachelor degree could be the college program for you. As an international business major, you can study key business concepts and develop skills for working across cross-cultural lines.
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Earning an international business degree can help equip you to conduct business at a place near home or on the other side of the world.
Online International Business Degrees
If you have dreams of living overseas or spending your days on calls with foreign associates, then you might be thinking about getting a BS in International Business. What exactly does this kind of degree program entail, though?
The typical focus of an international business program is on learning business skills that can serve you well in global settings. In addition to covering core concepts that all business students learn, these programs also discuss the ins and outs of working across national borders.
Your studies will likely include:
- Business law
- Foreign language
- Human resources
- Management and leadership
Many of these topics are similar to what you’d study in other business programs. In this major, though, these topics are typically viewed from a global mindset. For example, you might learn about business laws in countries around the world or consider what it’s like to advertise to multiple cultural groups.
International business is a standalone major at some schools. Other colleges include it as a concentration option within a broader degree program, such as a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA). Studying abroad is common for students in this major.
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Spending time in another country can help increase your cultural awareness and give you the opportunity to put what you’ve learned into practice. Before traveling abroad, you may be required to take several semesters of foreign language study.
Even if you don’t complete an international exchange program, you may still do an internship during your time in college. For example, you might complete a domestic internship with a company that maintains an overseas presence or sources supplies globally. There could also be internship opportunities in other countries.
Graduates of international business programs often work in the marketing, finance, sales, or logistics departments of companies. They may work in the United States or another country.
Other jobs related to this field include investment bankers and financial analysts.
An international business bachelor’s degree could also lead to graduate studies in business. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) or a masters in international business online or on campus could help advance your qualifications for management roles in top international companies.
International Business Careers & Salaries
With a bachelor in international business, you can pursue many of the jobs you could pursue with another business degree. The difference is that you might do those jobs overseas or in a company with global offices.
Your efforts may focus on reaching across borders, coordinating international supply lines, or tracking worldwide markets.
Potential jobs similar to those in stateside organizations include marketing, advertising, human resources, sales, and operations specialists. With experience, you might even advance to a management position. Working as an analyst of some sort is another popular option.
Some graduates become financial analysts or management analysts.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, business and financial jobs are expected to grow by 8% over the next 10 years, and they command a median annual salary of $76,570. These are just some of the jobs pursued by international business graduates, according to the BLS:
|Careers||Annual Median Salaries|
|Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers||$133,380|
|Financial Managers||$131, 710|
|Human Resources Managers||$126,230|
|General and Operations Managers||$97,970|
|Purchasing Managers, Buyers, and Purchasing Agents||$75,410|
|Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents||$62,910|
Some business jobs are especially needed in global organizations. For example, some professionals find their niche in supply chain operations or logistics. Others work in purchasing. Their responsibilities could involve overseeing imports and exports, organizing shipments, or procuring raw materials.
Many international business roles deal with finance and markets.
Knowledge of global economics could help you succeed as a stockbroker or an investment banker. Of course, international organizations also need accountants and budget specialists. As you gain experience, you might eventually qualify to work as a financial manager.
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Most management jobs require experience, but a bachelor’s degree in international business could help you get your foot in the door. Eventually, you might want to earn a graduate degree to expand your advanced career opportunities.
International Business Bachelor’s Curriculum & Courses
In an international business program, you’ll likely complete a business core and take classes that are specific to this globally focused major. Here are examples of some courses you may take:
- Business Law: Most business students take a course on American business legalities and regulations, but in an international program, you might also study foreign business policies.
- Economics: For success in many international business roles, it’s essential to understand both macroeconomics and microeconomics.
- Ethics and Politics: This course discusses ways that culture, power structures, and other factors may influence your business dealings.
- Foundations of International Business: This introductory course introduces concepts in global sales, worldwide trade, and interconnected markets.
- Global Markets: This course covers international banking and other financial topics that worldwide companies and government entities must consider.
- International Finance: Topics often studied in this class include exchange rates, foreign currency, multinational banking, and overseas investments.
- International Human Resources: This course explores how to manage employees at home and abroad, bridge cultural gaps, and provide training for overseas assignments.
- International Marketing: This class covers how to conduct marketing research, make product choices, and plan advertising campaigns in different cultural settings.
- Language Studies: Some international business students have to spend one or more semesters studying a foreign language.
- Leadership Concepts: This class can help you gain skills for being an effective leader, particularly in international or cross-cultural settings.
In addition to these classroom-focused courses, you might also complete a study-abroad session or an internship.
How to Choose an Online Bachelor’s in International Business Program
Many schools offer degrees in international business. Is there one best program that everyone should attend? No, that’s not really the case. Rather, different programs are usually better for different students.
Here are some factors to consider as you figure out which school could be the right fit for you:
- Degree type. At a school where international business is a concentration, you’ll probably have a more extensive business core and fewer courses that emphasize global topics. In a standalone international business program, the reverse may be true.
- Internships. You can gain valuable experience and build your network during industry internships. You might want to look for schools that partner with certain companies, or you might consider whether a college gives credit for completing an internship.
- Study abroad. If your schedule allows it, you may want to study overseas during your college program. As you compare different colleges, you can check out what countries are available for their semester abroad programs.
- Synchronous vs. asynchronous. For synchronous online programs, you and your classmates would attend virtual classes in real time. In an asynchronous online program, you’d watch lectures at your convenience.
In addition to these subjective factors, it’s also beneficial to pay attention to a college’s accreditation status. For a credible education, it’s necessary to choose a regionally accredited school.
When applying to undergraduate programs in international business, you’ll fill out application forms for each one. While admissions requirements can vary, your application packets may also need to contain:
- High school transcripts with GPA and course list
- Reference letters
- Standardized test scores (only some schools require them)
- Writing samples, essays, or a personal statement
During the application process, some schools may also ask you to complete an interview with an admissions counselor.
The best schools for international business are all regionally accredited. In fact, regional accreditation is generally the mark of any credible college. Colleges and universities offering on campus or online business degrees have to meet certain standards to become accredited. The education they offer has to be thorough, consistent, and reliable.
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Because regional accreditation is trustworthy, accredited coursework is more likely to transfer to other colleges. A degree earned at an accredited school can also help you get into graduate programs. In addition, employers are often more likely to hire candidates who have received an accredited education.
Financial Aid and Scholarships
Need help paying for your international business degree? By filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), you can see if you’re eligible to receive government or institutional aid.
Government funding may come from your state or a federal program. Students may qualify for low-interest loans, grants, or both. Institutional aid comes directly from colleges. You might qualify based on your academic merit, your financial need, or another factor.
Scholarships are another popular source of funding. They can be offered by companies, industry associations, philanthropic groups, and other organizations. Some employers help their employees pay for college too.
What Is an International Business Degree?
International business degree programs focus on applying business principles in global contexts.
In an international business program, you’ll likely study marketing, finance, organizational leadership, and other business-focused topics. Economics, human resources, logistics, and business law are other common topics of study.
To prepare you for work in global markets, coursework may also cover foreign currency and trade regulations. Courses on multiculturalism and diversity could be helpful as well. Many students take foreign languages during their college programs too.
International business programs often allow students to complete internships or study abroad as well.
Is International Business a Good Major?
Yes, international business is a good major for many undergraduate students.
Figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that business and finance jobs pay a median annual salary of $76,570. Management positions have a median yearly salary of $102,450.
Potential jobs in this field of study include stockbrokers, investment bankers, and purchasing agents. Graduates might also work in the human resources, advertising, operations, or logistics departments of companies with worldwide operations.
For those who want to see the world or build global connections, an international business degree could be a good fit.
What Do International Business Majors Do?
International business majors do many of the same things that other business professionals do. That can include marketing, sales, and supply chain management. Often, though, those tasks are interwoven with the responsibility of working in cross-cultural settings.
Some international business professionals live overseas. They may work for American companies with global offices or work for foreign companies. Others live closer to home. Their jobs might entail speaking frequently with people in other countries, traveling often, or coordinating supply chains across international lines.
International business professionals can also work in banking and finance organizations. Some professionals in this field hold government positions.
What Can You Do with an International Business Degree?
Many international business graduates work in companies that operate both domestically and overseas. They could be in the sales, logistics, operations, project management, or marketing departments, or they may work in another area of an organization.
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According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for business and finance jobs is $76,570. For those with the necessary education and experience, management roles often pay six-figure salaries.
Global business majors could also pursue jobs as purchasing agents, stockbrokers, financial analysts, and business consultants.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Bachelor of International Business Online?
At a school with traditional 16 week semesters, it typically takes about 4 years of full-time enrollment to earn a bachelor’s degree in international business. Most on-campus schools use such an approach.
Online business degree programs often offer different scheduling options.
For instance, in an accelerated online program, you can take classes throughout the year, so you can probably finish your degree in less time. Most accelerated classes are 7 to 8 weeks long, though this varies by program. When one set of classes ends, another typically begins right away.
Do you have any previous college coursework that you could transfer in? If so, you might be able to graduate even sooner.
What Jobs Can You Get with an International Business Degree?
Professionals with degrees in international business may work as purchasing agents or managers for multinational corporations. Others pursue jobs in sales or logistics.
Some international business majors really like finance, so they look for jobs in that area. They might become stockbrokers, financial analysts, or bankers. Global business majors’ knowledge of economics and foreign markets can be beneficial for such roles.
Many graduates eventually attain management positions. They may head up departments like human resources, advertising, or operations. Some even become top executives.
Is an International Business Degree Worth It?
Yes, an international business degree is worth it for many students. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, business and financial occupations are projected to experience an 8% growth rate over the next ten years. Management occupations are expected to see 9% job growth.
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In addition, international business degrees allow students to combine multiple areas of interest. If you’re intrigued by both business and global cultures, then this program may be a good fit for you. There’s flexibility in this degree as well. It could lead to work in a variety of business sectors and locations around the world.
Universities Offering Online Bachelors in International Business Degree Program
Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.
Bellevue University offers a Bachelor of Science in International Business Administration. Four areas of emphasis are available: Finance, Marketing, Management, and Supply Chain Logistics. The degree can be earned on campus or online.
Courses include Managerial Accounting, Principles of Finance, International Finance, and Business Policy and Strategy.
Bellevue University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Cambridge College offers an online program for a Bachelor of Science in International Business. It aims to teach students how to provide effective leadership and how to think and plan strategically to solve complex problems.
The program is designed to provide flexibility and convenience, and most students are working adults. The curriculum includes courses in accounting, information systems, finance, and more.
Cambridge College is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
Florida International University offers a Bachelor of Business Administration in International Business. The program is fully online. Graduates often pursue careers in consulting, human resources, marketing and sales, and related fields.
Courses include Accounting for Decisions, Legal Environment of Business, Speech and Writing for Business Communication, and more.
Florida International University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Lynn University offers an online Bachelor’s in International Business Management program. There are three start dates each year, and the student-faculty ratio is just 18-to-1. Each student is assigned a student success manager.
Prospective students simply need to fill out an application and provide transcripts and a personal statement.
Lynn University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Minot State University offers an international business degree that can be earned on campus and online. Students in the program have access to internships and study abroad programs. Coursework includes Elements of Accounting I and II, Legal Environment of Business, Fundamentals of Management, and more.
Minot State also has numerous student-run business clubs and organizations.
Minot State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Northern State University offers an online international business degree program. There is also a dual-degree option that gives students the opportunity to simultaneously earn a degree in Spanish and still potentially graduate in 4 years. Internships are available as well.
Courses in the program include Principles of Accounting I and II, Business Statistics, Business Finance, and Legal Environment of Business.
Northern State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Oral Roberts University offers a Bachelor of Science in International Business and Ministry that can be earned 100% online. The curriculum includes courses such as Financial Accounting, Quantitative Analysis, International Marketing, and Strategic Management.
There are six 7 week terms each year. Full-time students can potentially graduate in just 3.5 years.
Oral Roberts University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Southern New Hampshire University offers a BS in Business Administration with a concentration in International Business. There are no set class meeting times, and course materials can be accessed 24 hours a day. Applicants do not need to provide SAT or ACT scores. SNHU has a generous transfer credit policy.
Southern New Hampshire University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
The University of Houston—Downtown offers a BBA in International Business. Students can participate in internships and short-term study abroad trips. Instructors maintain close ties with the Houston business community to aid in helping students find job opportunities.
Graduates of the program often pursue careers in finance, marketing, management, and related fields.
The University of Houston – Downtown is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
The University of Minnesota—Crookston offers a major in international business that can be pursued on campus or online.
The program covers different aspects of business from a global perspective. It includes opportunities to study abroad and to take classes such as Business Ethics, Managerial Finance, International Dimensions in Business and Culture, and more.
The University of Minnesota – Crookston is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Getting Your Bachelor Degree in International Business Online
A degree in international business can open a range of opportunities. Some professionals might find themselves living in other countries or frequently jetting across the globe.
International business majors often meet interesting people, solve unique problems, and help keep the world connected. Does this sound like the right path for you? If so, you might consider earning your international business degree online.
Taking online classes can give you the opportunity to complete college work on your own schedule. This is the case whether it’s an online associates degree in business administration or an online bachelors in international business. You may even have exciting opportunities like studying abroad or interning with multinational corporations.
You can start exploring accredited colleges today to find the international business program that best aligns with your interests and goals.