Visual Merchandising Graduate Programs

Visual merchandising uses creative displays to promote the sale of fashions, accessories and other items in a retail store. Learn about graduate degree programs in this field, the courses you'll take and career options. Schools offering Communication Design & Interactive Media degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Graduate Programs Are Available in Visual Merchandising?

Visual merchandising involves setting the stage for goods in a way that will make them most appealing to maximize sales. If you're looking for a graduate degree in visual merchandising, you may want to consider a master's degree in design, fashion, apparel and merchandising or interdisciplinary studies offered from select art schools.

All of these degree programs touch on visual merchandising to provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to work in areas such as retail or fashion, creating store exhibits, displays and layouts. They also prepare you for other creative endeavors in design, fashion and merchandising.

Available ProgramsFashion merchandising M.F.A.s are available, as well as a merchandising focus in many design and fashion master's degrees
Common CoursesExpect courses on business, marketing and design concepts, including trend analysis, merchandising principles, product development, consumer behavior
Career OptionsGraduates can find work as interior designers or art directors in various industries

What Kinds of Courses are Available?

Courses in a master's degree program in fashion and design will encompass several aspects of visual merchandising. These courses may cover topics in business, visual communication, textiles, visual components of marketing and the execution of design concepts. In addition to coursework, master's degree programs usually also include a thesis or research project. Some of the courses you can expect to find in these types of degree programs include:

  • Merchandising principles
  • Trend analysis
  • Product development
  • Product sourcing
  • Consumer behavior

What Kinds of Jobs Will I Be Qualified For?

With a graduate degree and knowledge of visual merchandising, you may pursue a number of careers. You may be an art director, who is in charge of developing visual design projects, or an interior designer, who chooses colors, lighting, furniture and other pieces to enhance the aesthetics of different types of spaces.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) notes that art directors can work in advertising, public relations, publishing and film. As of January 2016, median salaries for art directors ranged from $40,217 to $93,966, according to Payscale.com.

Employment of interior designers is expected to grow about 4% for the same time period, according to the BLS. Median salaries for interior designers in January 2016 ranged from $30,744 to $63,389, as cited on Payscale.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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  • Winthrop University

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    Popular programs at Winthrop University:

    • Master

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  • Full Sail University

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  • The Art Institutes

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    • Virginia: Arlington
  • Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

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  • The New School

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    • New York: New York