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International Business

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International Business Major

International business is a major that typically falls into the Business, Management & Marketing category.

There are 57 programs available throughout the country that offer an associate’s degree in international business, 457 that offer a bachelor’s degree, and 129 that offer a master’s degree. There are also at least 10 schools in the nation where you can get your doctorate degree in the field.

Who Is Getting an International Business Degree?

In 2017, roughly 6,500 international business majors graduated with a bachelor’s degree. This makes it #65 in popularity of all the majors we track. Roughly 53.6% of the graduates are women, and 46.4% are men.

Racial Distribution

At the countrywide level, the racial distribution of international business majors is as follows:

  • Asian: 5.8%
  • Black or African American: 5.3%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 19.9%
  • White: 42.8%
  • Non-Resident Alien: 20.5%
  • Other Races: 5.7%
International Business Majors Ethnic Diversity Statistics

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in international business. About 20.5% of those graduating in 2017 were international students. The most popular countries sending international business majors to the U.S. are China, India and Venezuela.

What Will You Learn as an International Business Major?

An O*NET survey asked people with careers related to international business to rate how important certain subject areas were to their job. The following are some of the results of that survey. Importance was rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for International Business Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

Important Knowledge Areas for International Business Majors

Skills for International Business Majors

When studying international business, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:

Important Skills for International Business Majors

Abilities for International Business Majors

Some of the most crucial abilities to master while a international business student include the following:

Important Abilities for international business Majors

What Can You Do With an International Business Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with international business:

Careers Related to International Business
Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary

Chief Executives



Chief Sustainability Officers



Business Professors



General and Operations Managers



International Business Major Salary

International business majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $103,000 to $200,000. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, the typical high school graduate makes between $29,000 and $57,000 a year. The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $44,000 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,000 and $120,000.

Average Salary for an International Business Major  ( 103000 to 200000 )
Average Salary for High School Graduate  ( 29000 to 57000 )
Average Salary with Bachelor's Degree  ( 44000 to 99000 )
Average Salary with Advanced Degree  ( 55000 to 120000 )

Your salary will be largely dependent on the career path you follow and what area of the country (or world) you work. Getting a graduate degree may open up more options with higher salary potential.

Amount of Education Required for International Business Major Jobs

Some careers associated with international business may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

How much education do you really need to compete in today’s job market? People currently working in careers related to international business have obtained the following education levels.

Education Levels for Careers Associated With International Business
Level of Education Percentage of Workers

Less Than a High School Diploma


High School Diploma or Equivalent


Post-Secondary Certificate


Some College Courses


Associate's Degree or Equivalent


Bachelor's Degree


Post-Baccalaureate Certificate


Master's Degree


Post-Master's Certificate


First Professional Degree


Doctoral Degree


Post-Doctoral Training


Online International Business Programs

There are 457 colleges that offer a bachelor’s degree in international business, with 54 of them offering at least some courses online.

Online learners must listen or watch video lectures, participate in group chats or forums, submit papers and assignments electronically, take tests, and meet deadlines.

Getting your degree online is not easy and includes watching and listening to hours of lectures, participating in group charts, submitting papers by the appropriate deadline and taking tests. Some online programs will also feature internships or in-person clinical hours.

Is an International Business Major Worth It?

The median salary for an international business grad is $124,000 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 218% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $1,699,600 after 20 years!

international business salary compared to typical high school and college graduates over a 20 year period


Bureau of Labor Statistics
National Center for Education Statistics
O*NET Online
Image Credit: Ninaras via License

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