Introduction to Global Business

I.     Course Prefix/Number: GBS 101

       Course Name: Introduction to Global Business

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

Recommended: BUS 101 taken prior to, or in conjunction with, this course

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course provides necessary foundation for introductory courses in global business, as well as for advanced courses and seminars.  Content includes current world trade activities, practices, government aids and barriers to trade; economic, geographic, political and transportation aspects, cultural differences affecting trade; traffic, documentation, finance and marketing.

IV.   Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this course the student who completes it successfully will be able to:

1.    Assess aids and barriers to trade provided by government laws and institutions in major trading countries.
2.    Prepare cost analysis for different modes of transportation.
3.    Demonstrate understanding of terminology and definitions used in global business today.
4.    Discuss in general terms international financing, foreign exchange considerations, insurance, and transfer of funds.
5.    Prepare quotations for export, how to choose the best distribution channel, how to provide the proper insurance, and how to collect for shipments.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

1.    Introduction, objectives, methods of instruction, grading.  Overviews of differences between domestic and international business.  Terms and definitions.  Why Export? Relation between import and export.  Trade balances.

2.    Export channels.  Export through middlemen.  Export management companies.  Export merchants.  Export brokers.  Export commission house.  Direct export.  Export department.  Wholly-owned subsidiary.  Webb-Pomerene Associations.  Export trading companies.

3.    Overseas marketing; distribution.  Commission representatives; foreign distributors; foreign distributor branches.  Joint ventures.  Licensing.  Pitfalls and how to avoid them.   FCIA.

4.    Export order and price considerations.  Pricing.  Barter methods, types.  Terms of sale.   Preparing quotations.  Handling inquiries from over-seas.  Proforma invoices.  Product modifications.

5.    U.S. export controls.  Export declarations.  Schedule B commodity list.  Barriers to trade.

6.    Government aids to trade.  U.S. government agencies promoting trade.  International agencies promoting trade.  Foreign trade associations.  Generalized System of preferences.  GATT (General Agreement On Trade and -Tariffs).  Foreign Trade Zones.  Bonded warehouses.  UNCTAD U.N. Conference on Trade and Development).

7.    The export/import department, operations, organization, functions.  Transportation overview.  Air carriage, conferences.  Barges and inland waterways.

8.    Review and mid-term exam.

9.    Getting paid; terms, conditions, methods.  Shipping and collection documents.  Time required to collect.

10.    Financing.  Financing exports; Export/Import Bank; Overseas; Private Investment Corporation; Private Export Funding Corporation; Factoring.

11.    Foreign exchange considerations in international trade.  Currency fluctuation.  Hedging.  Which currency to do business in.

12.    Warehousing.  U.S. import controls.  The customs house broker. Generalized System of Preferences.  Import Bonds.

13.    Protection for the importer.  Certificates of inspection.  Insurance; marine, air, land.

14.    Geo-political considerations.  Cultural differences.  Political differences.  North-South business relations, East-West business relations.  Importance of foreign language.  Dealing with communist countries.

15.    Current issues and trends.  Review and questions.

16.     Final Exam.

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Lecture, class discussion, useful handout material, and guest lecturers as appropriate.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

1.    Reading Assignments
2.    Writing Assignments
3.    Homework Assignments
4.    Case Studies

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Varies by instructor.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Progress is measured by short quizzes, class participation, mid-term and final exams supplemented by a short term paper.

XI.   Other Course Information

A.    Attendance policies will be established by each instructor.

B.    Each instructor will establish policies with respect to make-up exams, incomplete grades, etc.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at