2017 - 2018 Academic Catalog

Fashion & Retail Merchandising Minor

The Fashion & Retail Merchandising minor allows non-fashion majors to engage in a condensed study of the retail and manufacturing facet of the fashion industry. The minor consists of 6 courses- 2 of which are required foundations and four of which allow for exploration into various business aspects of the industry.

Course Code Course Title Credits
Core Courses
FASH101 The Business of Fashion 3
FASH105 Excel for the Industry 1
MATH116 Merchandising and Financial Mathematics 3
Choose 4 from the following:
FASH102 The Fashion Consumer 3
FASH201 Merchandise Planning & Control 3
FASH207 Digital Tools for Fashion 3
FASH210 Textiles 3
FASH211 Fashion Retail Management 3
FASH302 Retail Operations 3
FASH309 Apparel Product Development 3
FASH406 Global Retailing 3

Credit Requirements for minor: 18 credits

FASH101 - The Business of Fashion

This survey course takes an interdisciplinary approach to the fashion business as it relates to cultural, historic, economic, and contemporary influences, giving students a basic understanding of the terms and concepts associated with the fashion and retail industries. The concepts and practices developed are equally applicable to the many career paths possible within the Fashion Industry. Topics include: technological applications, environmental influences on fashion; the fashion cycle; trend forecasting; fashion marketing; women's, men's, and children's apparel; supply chain management; product development, foreign and domestic market centers; and retail merchandising on multiple platforms.

FASH105 - Excel for the Industry

Microsoft Excel is the foundation of business analytical software and has become the number one required skill for industry professionals. This course will introduce basic spreadsheet functions such as; formatting, data entry, pivot tables and analytical graphical display. Projects will directly reflect best industry practices. Students will apply developed skills to projects throughout the fashion curriculum.

MATH116 - Merchandising and Financial Mathematics

This course focuses on retail mathematics. Topics include simple and compound interest, the time-value of capital, annuities, amortization, sinking funds, bond and investment, business problem-solving and decision making. Other topics include profit, loss, and break-even analysis, pricing, inventory, and merchandise planning. The course introduces basic theories of statistics. Prerequisite: MATH 106 with a grade of C or better or through placement testing.

FASH102 - The Fashion Consumer

This course examines the psychological and sociological variables that shape the fashion consumer’s decision making process. The wants and needs of consumers will be explored through an understanding of attitudes, and purchase motivation. Students will consider internal and external influencing factors, including the influence of social media and technology, the potential impact of government regulation, the consumer’s perception of self, and their perceived social and ethical responsibilities. The goal of building a strategy towards a satisfied and loyal customer will be at the heart of the conversation.

FASH201 - Merchandise Planning & Control

This course provides an understanding of business strategies related to assortment planning, buying, and allocating inventory. Building upon retail math fundamentals, students create stock and sales plans in accordance with the goals and objectives of a given seasonal sales strategy, including methods of figuring markups, sales projections, turnover, average stock, stock-to-sales ratios, open-to-buy, markdowns, and gross margin. Negotiation skills related to terms of sale, shipping and pricing strategies are explored within the wholesale/retail business relationship. Both manual and computer-based calculations are explored through the use of Excel and other industry-based software. Concepts related to retail analytics and predictive modeling as they relate to consumer buying patterns will also be discussed. Prerequisite: FASH 101 & MATH116

FASH207 - Digital Tools for Fashion

Technical skills are becoming more and more a required proficiency in all capacities of the fashion industry. This course introduces Fashion & Retail Merchandising and Fashion Communication & Promotion students to software prominently used for apparel manufacturing, retail and media. With a focus on methods of visual communication, projects include technical drawing, colorization, editing, and integration and manipulation of photographic images.

FASH210 - Textiles

This course introduces the study of textiles through exploration of the production of fibers and methods of creating fabrics. Students learn to identify fiber content, properties and various types of weaving and knitting applications. Other topics include the study of fiber characteristics, quality and care of fabric finishes, and a practical assessment of fabrics in relationship to particular end uses.

FASH211 - Fashion Retail Management

This course explores the principles of retail management. Topics include; technological applications, marketing strategies, store image considerations, competitive analysis, legal constraints, consumer behavior, decision making and critical reasoning associated with retail store practices. Concepts are explored such as operating in an omnichannel environment and the use of retail analytics. Principles are examined and applied through class discussion and lecture, group projects and case studies. Prerequisite: FASH101

FASH302 - Retail Operations

This course builds on the concepts learned in FASH 201 Merchandise Planning & Control and FASH 211 Retail Management extending into retail store planning, trading area and site analysis, financial management, omnichannel retailing and performance metrics. All phases of merchandising and sales management, including merchandise logistics, enabling technology, distribution channels, retail assortment planning and labor administration are incorporated into a comprehensive study of retail operations. Technological applications that are industry specific are utilized throughout this course. Prerequisite: FASH 211

FASH309 - Apparel Product Development

Exploring the global product development matrix, students in this course work together in teams to explore the product lifecycle in terms of sourcing and production. Class sessions combine lectures and cases with hands-on exercises to reinforce key concepts. This survey course covers topics including supply chain management, design calendars, apparel product price points, brand differentiation, product distribution channels, trend forecasting services, color management, specification and technical package development, sizing, quality control, ethics, and evaluation of the global production environment. Pre-requisite: FASD 220, FASH211, or FASH218

FASH406 - Global Retailing

This course is a concentrated exploration of the challenges of serving international retail dynamics and trends. The focus will be to provide students global perspectives regarding retailing through different channels within a variety of geographies. With an emphasis on increasing demand for product, marketing, merchandising and supply chain analysis, this course enables the student to interpret a worldwide perspective when planning for retail execution across regions with different seasonality, retail models and supply chain dynamics. Topics will include; competitive threat from online retailing, the challenge of cybersecurity, similarities and differences of international retail business models, distribution and supply chain practices and the fragmentation of the consumer market. FASH302 or permission of instructor.