Online Bachelor of Science in Industrial Distribution

Ready for your future in industrial distribution? We deliver the goods unlike any other.

Break into industrial distribution by joining one of the few joint engineering and business programs in the world. Our online BS in Industrial Distribution offers a different route into a burgeoning industry that keeps goods flowing and serves government, business, and health care. Our grads work for industry leaders like Johnson & Johnson, General Electric, and more.

UAB Industrial Distribution Program Highlights

  • 100% online degree program
  • Instruction and mentoring from expert business and engineering faculty members
  • Choose from 2 concentrations: Industrial Distribution or Medical Equipment and Supplies Distribution
  • 24/7 technical support
  • Network with colleagues from diverse backgrounds
  • Scholarships available to qualified students

Why Choose a Bachelor’s in Industrial Distribution?



Medical Equipment Supply


The economy depends on efficient distribution.
That’s why our grads are in high demand.

We offer a distinct degree that distinguishes our graduates. Our approach merges business and technical skills with an aim to better qualify you for careers in sales, marketing, and purchasing. You can focus your degree in industrial distribution or medical equipment and supplies distribution. Pursue your exact ambitions from a blended perspective.

Many companies consider our program the best in the country, evidenced by our exceptional annual placement rate for graduates — the highest of any of our degrees. In fact, the typical graduate receives multiple job offers before graduation.

Why Choose UAB’s Collat School of Business?

We’re a celebrated supplier of leadership skills.

The UAB industrial distribution program is not just recognized by the world’s leading businesses. It’s also a notable component of the renowned Collat School of Business. We have garnered national and international respect for our rigorous academic standards and consistent record of growth and accomplishment. Our accolades include:

  • U.S. News & World Report ranked UAB among the top 100 "Best Online Bachelor's Programs" and one of the nation's "Best National Universities" in its 2017 annual guide to America's Best Colleges.
  • The Princeton Review named UAB among the "Top 10 Universities in the United States for Diversity" for four consecutive years.
  • The University of Alabama at Birmingham's Collat School of Business is accredited by AACSB and the SACS.

Our renowned business school is focused on leadership, innovation, and entrepreneurship. Our metropolitan location allows our faculty to build strong relationships with professionals from the state’s leading companies — from Fortune 500 corporations to entrepreneurial startups — and to integrate their practical experiences into our programs. At UAB, you can gain valuable, real-world experience through a wide variety of opportunities. The same faculty members who teach on campus also teach the online industrial distribution courses and are dedicated to supporting your career goals. You’ll have many opportunities to interact and collaborate with your cohorts and professors online, as well as to become involved in various student organizations as a virtual participant.

Industry Outlook and Career Opportunities

5 million distribution jobs remained unfilled in 2015.
Learn to supply the growing need.

At the end of 2015, the distribution/wholesale industry had more than 5 million job openings (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Projections show even more growth potential, especially for well-rounded professionals who can apply their specialized skills in evolving business, government, and health care settings.

In health care especially, the aging U.S. baby boomer population is driving increased demand for health care products and equipment. This means the health care industry needs qualified professionals to evaluate and distribute medical supplies. Focus your online BS in Industrial Distribution in medical equipment and supplies distribution to meet this need.

Our curriculum positions graduates to become more competitive in the job market with courses that translate directly to careers. The number of available jobs often is higher than that of graduates available for hire. Consider the career paths above at left.

Sales Manager

Average Salary $110,660*Ranked #2 in Best Sales & Marketing Jobs and #17 in Best Paying Jobs by U.S. News & World Report, sales managers must be able to prepare budgets and discern the profitability of products.
*Salary data provided by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Sales Engineer

Average Salary $96,340*Sales engineers oversee a great deal in industrial distribution, from securing orders to arranging delivery to providing technical support. Demand for sales engineers who can knowledgeably explain how products are made is rising. Depending on the industry, sales engineer jobs are projected to grow by as much as 21% between 2014 and 2024 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
*Salary data provided by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.


Average Salary $73,870*Ranked #12 in Best Business Jobs by U.S. News & World Report, logisticians work in supply chain management, closely analyzing how products are distributed, including military or medical supplies and commercial goods. Professional association MHI reports that 1.4 million logistics jobs are expected to be open between 2014 and 2018.
*Salary data provided by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Distribution Manager

Average Salary $93,180*Distribution managers serve an important role in supply chain management, in charge of storing and distributing products. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in government and business enterprises can lead to higher average earnings up to $114,350.
*Salary data provided by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Buyers and Purchasing Agents

Average Salary $58,520*Working in procurement puts you in a position to evaluate an organization’s suppliers and offer important counsel regarding contract renewals and product quality. As the economy continues its regrowth, purchasing agents with bachelor’s degrees are expected to have the best prospects (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). *Salary data provided by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

  • Curriculum

  • Career Resources

Practical skills. Flexible schedule.

Few programs can connect technical know-how with business insight the way the online UAB industrial distribution degree does. Our 100% online curriculum delivers practical skills to help you develop solutions, connect people and organizations, and play a pivotal role in essential distribution efforts. Choose from two tracks to focus your degree. With either track, you will complete the same Foundation and Lower Level Core courses.

Want to learn more?
Explore our online bachelor’s in industrial distribution course descriptions.

Foundation Courses (6 credit hours)
BUS 102 Business Foundations - 3 credit hours
BUS 110 Essentials of Financial Literacy - 3 credit hours
Lower Level Core - 21 credit hours
AC 201 Principles of Accounting II - 3 credit hours
EC 210 Microeconomics - 3 credit hours
EC 211 Macroeconomics - 3 credit hours
QM 214 Quantitative Analysis I - 3 credit hours
QM 215 Quantitative Analysis II - 3 credit hours
LS 246 Legal Environment of Business - 3 credit hours
Upper Level Core (19 credit hours)
MG 302 Management Processes and Behavior - 3 credit hours
IS 303 Information Systems - 3 credit hours
MK 303 Basic Marketing - 3 credit hours
FN 310 Fundamentals of Financial Management - 3 credit hours
BUS 350 Business Communications - 3 credit hours
MK 416 International Marketing - 3 credit hours
BUS 305 Professional Development - 1 credit hour
Capstone (3 credit hours)
BUS 450 Strategic Management - 3 credit hours

ID Concentration Options:

Industrial Distribution Engineering Core (27 credit hours)

The ID Engineering program focuses on the total industrial distribution business. Engineering courses, along with a solid foundation in the arts and sciences, complement the broad business core. In this track, students complete four engineering courses specifically tailored for ID students and five ID management courses.

ME 103 Drawing, Design and Measurement for ID - 3 credit hours
ME 302 Overview of Mechanical Components - 3 credit hours
EE 305 Fundamentals of Electrical Engineering - 3 credit hours
MSE 350 Introduction to Materials - 3 credit hours
DB 320 Industrial Distribution Management - 3 credit hours
MK 330 Professional Selling - 3 credit hours
DB 430 Industrial Distribution Operations - 3 credit hours
DB 435 Industrial Distribution Policies and Quality Issues - 3 credit hours
DB 495 Industrial Distribution Directed Studies / Practicum - 3 credit hours
Medical Equipment and Supplies Core (27 credit hours)

The Medical Equipment and Supplies program integrates the business curriculum with distribution, human anatomy, and health professions classes to prepare graduates for careers in the medical equipment and supplies industry. A Medical Equipment and Supplies Distribution concentration is designed to provide students with the skills necessary to succeed in the health care industry as a direct service provider in the supply chain, purchasing, distribution, operations, and sales sectors of health care products and services. In this track, students will complete five courses specifically tailored for Medical Equipment & Supplies Distribution and five ID management courses.

EC 306 Health Care Economics - 3 credit hours
MK 471 Health Care Marketing - 3 credit hours
AHS 350 Medical Terminology for Health Professionals - 3 credit hours
DB 320 Distribution Management - 3 credit hours
DB 430 Distribution Operations - 3 credit hours
DB 435 Distribution Policies and Quality Issues - 3 credit hours
DB 495 Distribution Directed Studies / Practicum - 3 credit hours
MK 330 Professional Selling - 3 credit hours
HCM 330 Overview of Health Care Systems - 3 credit hours

The help you need to get the career you want

We provide many tools to help jumpstart your successful career, starting with Career & Professional Development Services. This service provides resume, interviewing, and job search tips to aid you on your path to employment, as well as networking and professional experience opportunities.

Career & Professional Development Services also gives you access to DragonTrail Jobs, an online career management site for students, alumni, and employers nationwide. Career & Professional Development Services has the tools and tips to help you reach your employment goals.


What should I look for in an online program?

We recommend students pursuing online undergraduate or graduate degrees consider programs with extensive experience delivering online learning, professional accreditation (AACSB), a dedicated full-time faculty, a high level of student satisfaction, and a low student attrition rate. UAB’s online industrial distribution degree offers you all of these advantages, providing the benefits of a traditional university education with the convenience and flexibility afforded by the use of advanced technology.

Why is accreditation important?

It's important to entrust your education to an academic institution recognized for professional excellence and tested for quality assurance. Since 1982, the University of Alabama at Birmingham Collat School of Business has maintained accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), a seal of excellence afforded to only 176 universities worldwide for undergraduate and graduate business degree programs.

Do I earn the same degree that on-campus students earn?

Yes, the University of Alabama at Birmingham awards the same accredited industrial distribution degrees regardless of the delivery method.

Does the diploma say "online"?

Your Bachelor of Science in Industrial Distribution diploma will not distinguish that you are a distance student in our online program. Students can be confident that UAB’s standards of excellence are the same for on-campus and online industrial distribution degree programs. Online students, if they wish, attend the same graduation ceremony as on-campus students.

How long will it take to earn my Bachelor of Science in Industrial Distribution degree?

Students can complete their bachelor’s in industrial distribution in as few as 4 years. Completion of the entire industrial distribution degree is contingent upon individual student general education course completion and transfer credit evaluation.

Can I transfer credit hours earned at another institution to UAB?

Yes, UAB accepts transfer credits from other institutions. For more information, please complete the form above to download a brochure or to speak with an advisor.


Learn More Today

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1. What area of Industrial Distribution most interests you?

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