International Business and Commerce

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International business  and commerce studies offers many opportunities. Globalisation means graduates may end up working with companies anywhere in the world.

Cultural knowledge, a second language, and an understanding of the workings of other economies all go a long way.

The ever-increasing importance of the EU and European markets to Ireland’s economy, the rise of Asian economic giants such as China and India, and the prevalence of non-national firms in Ireland are just a few of the reasons why job opportunities for business graduates with international knowledge and language skills are always good.


Business degrees with an international flavour are widely available from third-level institutions across Ireland. Course titles include International Business, International Commerce, and Business with a foreign language.

Typically, first-year students are introduced to core business topics such as Economics, Management, Accounting, Marketing, HR, and Business IT. A foreign language is usually mandatory. An impressive number of languages are available to choose from; besides the more standard roster of French, German, Spanish, and Italian, there are also more unusual (although excellent) options, including Russian, Chinese, and Japanese.

Students have the opportunity to study or complete a workplace internship abroad, during which time they will have the chance to immerse themselves in both the language and the local culture. There is a particular focus on students learning how to conduct business in their chosen language.

International Business students examine issues such as the challenges faced by companies seeking to operate internationally, the worlds of international trade and investment, global monetary systems, and the strategic management skills required to trade successfully on an international level.

Dun Laoghaire College of Further Education offers a one-year Level 5 certificate in International Business Trade Practice. Students gain skills and knowledge in all of the practical aspects of importing and exporting products for international markets. Graduates may embark upon careers with shipping and export companies.

The Work

Graduates of these programmes find work in a wide range of business-related professions. These include accountancy, financial services, marketing, human resource management and sales. They also work in other sectors such as IT, journalism, the non-profit sector, and teaching.

The beauty of an International Business or Commerce degree, however, is that in addition to all the opportunities that are available to ‘normal’ Business degree holders, graduates are equipped with the required language and international business skills to work in multinational corporations, international trade and investment companies, and in non-English speaking countries.

It is also possible for them to find work as sales managers in the export department of Irish companies. Responsibilities of this role might include using international market research and cultural knowledge to decide on the right products for a foreign target market, utilising language ability to maintain good relationships with customers, and overseeing the product distribution system.

Did you know?

The world’s top five countries for exports are China, the USA, Germany, Japan, and France.

Further Resources

International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) is a national database of universities, colleges, institutes and providers of third level and PLC courses in Ireland. We operate a national search database of courses at certificate, diploma and degree level as well as providing information about career paths and directions.
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