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Syllabus:

Consumer Behavior, Market Analysis and Strategic Decision Making D, 30 Credits

Swedish name: Consumer Behavior, Market Analysis and Strategic Decision Making D

This syllabus is valid: 2021-08-23 and until further notice

Course code: 2FE177

Credit points: 30

Education level: Second cycle

Main Field of Study and progress level: Business Administration: Second cycle, has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirements

Grading scale: VG Pass with distinction, G Pass, U Fail

Responsible department: Business Administration

Revised by: Rector of Umeå School of Business and Economics, 2021-05-27

Contents

This marketing course is intended for students who want to increase their knowledge of aspects that affect consumer behaviour, and of theories and methods for advanced analysis of consumer markets. The final modules of this course focus on advanced market analysis and development of decision making skills.
 
The course is given and examined in English.
 
Generic learning outcome.
In addition to the specific learning outcomes for each module (see below), the course has a number of goals for the development of generic skills. After completing the course, the student should be able to:
  • reflect on equality, diversity and multiculturalism multiculturality and work effectively in multicultural teams
  • integrate expertise from different knowledge areas in order to identify, analyze and solve organizational problems,
  • plan, conduct, and present investigations, both orally and in writing, for an academic audience as well as an audience of business practitioners. 
Common expected learning outcome:
  • communicate central concepts for the course in English, both orally and in writing
The modules are: 
Module 1. Marketing Strategy, 7.5 credits. 
Module 2. Consumer Behaviour, 7.5 credits. 
Module 3. Consumer and Market Analysis, 7.5 credits.
Module 4. Strategic Marketing Planning, 7.5 credits.
 
Module 1. Marketing Strategy, 7.5 credits

This module highlights strategic marketing challenges of firms. The students will gain an understanding of how the business context affects the selection and implementation of different strategies. The module presents various applications of marketing strategies to highlight the dynamics of strategic issues. Students will practice to think strategically from both an internal and external perspective.
 
Expected learning outcomes:
After completing this module, the student should be able to:
  • Analyze and discuss the foundations of marketing strategies
  • Analyze and propose strategic resource constellations for effective marketing strategies.
  • Propose appropriate actions to manage challenges faced by organizations within the frames of marketing strategies
  • Critically reflect upon the consequences of strategic choices and decisions considering the wider societal context
  • Describe, recognize and apply the code of academic conduct to the student's own work.
Focus of instruction:
In addition to lectures, the learning is supported by case work and seminars. The module requires significant amount of independent study. This means reading the assigned literature.
The module integrates theoretical insights with practical applications in a learning environment which builds on active participation, both individually and in groups. During the module, students will also be introduced to methods of working in international teams and the code of academic conduct, e.g. referencing, or how to avoid plagiarism and cheating.

Examination modes
Examination is based upon the two individual written exams, one individual exam written in an exam hall and one individual written home exam, and one case report, which are prepared in a group. The final grade is awarded to students who pass all assignments and an individual online-test on the code of academic conduct. The course is given and examined in English. Note as well examination modes below for the course as a whole.
 
Module 2.   Consumer Behavior, 7.5 credits
For companies to attain commercial success, it is important to understand and have knowledge about consumer behavior. This course module highlights consumers' internal processes and how knowledge of these processes can be useful for choosing appropriate marketing strategies. Theoretical models in marketing that are needed to analyze consumer behavior,  practical examples, and research in consumer behavior are discussed during the module.  
Expected learning outcomes
After completing this module, the student should be able to:
  • Identify and analyze the internal processes related to consumer behavior.
  • Analyze and discuss how theories and models of consumer behavior can be applied for developing value proposals
  • Analyze and evaluate consumer behavior from a sustainable perspective according to existent theories and research.
  • Critically reflect upon the role of consumption in society.
  • Critically assess and evaluate different consumer research methods.
Focus of instruction
Learning is supported by interactive lectures and seminars. The readings and lectures are meant to complement each other. The seminars are intended to help the students to develop a good understanding of what consumer behavior is about in order to apply this knowledge in the different module assignments.

Examination modes
The assessments of the module consist of seminars and written assignments, prepared and presented both individual and in groups, and an individual written hall exam. A passing grade is required for each part of the module. The course is given and examined in English. Note as well examination modes below for the course as a whole.
 
Module 3. Consumer and Market Analysis, 7.5 credits
While the core principle of marketing is simple "make profit by meeting a need of a customer", translating this principle into a set of strategic and operational decisions is far more complex. This course is designed to provide the students with the concepts and tools to handle this complexity and to offer them the opportunity to actually formulate and implement marketing strategies.  Therefore, this course module involves a comprehensive simulation exercise that facilitates students' development of skills in formulating and implementing marketing decisions in a realistic and data-rich environment. The simulation exercise thus entails that the groups compete with each other. The key areas explored are demand processes, segmentation, positioning, new product introduction, and resource allocation. This course also closely examines how marketing research studies and various marketing indicators can inform strategic and operational decisions. 
 
Expected learning outcomes
After completing this module, the student should be able to:
  • Evaluate the contribution of marketing decisions to firm's short- and long-term market and financial performance.
  • Apply advanced methods for modeling customer, competitor and market behaviors.
  • Establish priorities among and align product portfolio, segmentation, positioning and marketing mix decisions.
  • Formulate and implement marketing strategies in a dynamic and competitive environment under conditions of information incompleteness, uncertainty and time pressure.
  • Assess the broader societal, environmental and ethical implications of firm's marketing investments.  
Focus of instruction
This course uses one of the most widely used business simulations, as a learning platform. Student teams will run a simulated firm and make different marketing decisions. This module also includes interactive lectures and seminars, and requires significant amount of both independent work and teamwork.
 
Examination modes
The assessment of this module consists of: (1) an evaluation of group performance that includes simulated firm performance, interim report, marketing plan and a presentation; (2) individual case analysis assignment and (3) individual written exam. A passing grade is required for each part. The course is given and examined in English. Note as well examination modes below for the course as a whole.
 
Module 4. Strategic Marketing Planning 7,5 credits
All marketing managers must be able design the future strategies for their business or business area. The environment, opportunities and plans change over time, but strategic plans and programs are considered as  important tools helping marketing managers in understanding the dynamics in environment and in organizations.
 
In this module students participate in a real-life strategic process which requires them to act based on the knowledge they have assemble during this modules as well as in previous modules and take part in developing a marketing plan for a company or an organization.

Expected learning outcomes
After completing this module, the student should be able to:
  • Demonstrate analytical and integrative skills in solving advanced tasks within strategic marketing;
  • Apply acquired knowledge and understanding from this module as well as from previous courses to, within given timeframes, design a marketing plan that follows general ethical principles,
  • Critically reflect upon the individual's and the group's ability to work effectively with external organizations.
  • Orally and in writing for stakeholders, present analyses, ideas and marketing plan developed and/or drawn by the team or individually.
  • Evaluate own competence and own need for competence development in order to work with strategic marketing.
Focus of instruction
In this module, learning is supported by work with a company or an organization to develop a marketing plan. This entails students working in groups as a team of consultants to develop a marketing plan. The groups will work relatively independently but in dialogue with representatives of organizations. Students will receive regular supervision from faculty and during workshops, seminars and lectures.

Examination modes
The examination consists of four parts:1). a written marketing plan; 2). an oral presentation of this plan to participating organizations;3). a written individual home exam; and 4). active participation and contribution to meetings related to the work with the marketing plan and to compulsory seminars.
A passing grade is required for each part of the module. The course is given and examined in English. Note as well examination modes below for the course as a whole.

Expected learning outcomes

See each separate module.

Required Knowledge

90 credits out of which 75 credits in Business Administration whereof 15 credit bachelor courses or equivalent. Approved 52,5 credits whereof 7,5 credits in bachelor courses.
It required to have broad knowledge of different specializations within the subject of Business Administration i.e. Management, Marketing, Accounting and Finance. Statistics 7.5 credits or equivalent.

Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish upper secondary course English B, English/6.

Form of instruction

See each separate module.

Examination modes

See each separate module and below.
The following grading system is used:

Pass with distinction (Väl godkänd, VG, 75% or more),
Pass (Godkänd, G, 50% or more)
and Fail (Underkänd U, less than 50%).

Grades on the course are awarded when the student has passed all examinations and compulsory course elements. The course is given and examined in English.
To receive the grade Pass with distinction (VG) in the 30 credits course consisting of four modules of the same size, the student must have achieved Pass with distinction (VG) in at least three out of four modules. In shorter courses for example 7,5 credit courses, 15 credit courses or 22,5 credits courses Pass with distinction (VG) is given when the student has achieved at least 75% of the total weighted points.

A student who does not pass at the time of the written examination will be offered an opportunity to sit a further examination within two months. Beyond that, additional examination opportunities normally arise every academic year, one week prior to the start of the autumn term. If required by specific circumstances, the Director of Studies may decide on other forms of examination.

In case of failure on seminar participation or individual and group assignments, compensating assignments must be completed in accordance with instructions given, no later than two weeks after the completion of the module. Mandatory assignments (seminars, written assignments, cases, computer assignments etc.) that have not been handed in within stipulated time must be done the next time the course is offered. If the form of examination does not permit repetition other forms of re-examination may be used.

When a student has failed an examination on two occasions, he or she has a right to have another grading teacher. A written request for an alternative examiner should be handed to the director of studies no later than two weeks before the next examination opportunity.

A student who has passed an examination can not redo the examination to get a higher grade.

If a student fails to present a photo ID at the occasion of a written exam in an exam room will not be allowed to take the exam.

Disciplinary action may be taken against students who uses unauthorized help aids or in some other way tries to mislead on a test or when another type of task is being evaluated. Rules and regulations concerning the production of academic texts and correct referencing will be applicable to all written assignments. (see instructions in the thesis manual, Thesis Writing in Business Administration). Urkund records may be used for control. In addtion, Umeå University rules and regulations  for education and research applies.

Educational activities are designed to facilitate students towards achieving expected learning outcomes and can explain, supplement and provide contrast to the course literature and other relevant course materials.

Other regulations

Academic credit transfers are according to the University credit transfer regulations.
This course can not be used in the same degree as 2fe199, 2fe179 ovh 2fe179

This course can not be included in the degree together with 2fe199, 2fe193 och 2fe179

Literature

Valid from: 2021 week 34

Course literature

Apart from the specific literature for each module specified below, a selection of international scientific journal articles and cases will be used in the examination of each module. The exact list will be available on the course web site and at the Student Services Office at least one month prior to the start of the course.

Module 1

Literature

Scientific articles (approx. 200-300 pages) will be presented at the start of the module.

Module 2

Literature

Consumer Behaviour : a European perspective
Solomon Michael R., Askegaard Søren, Hogg Margaret K., Bamossy Gary J.
7th edition. : Harlow : Pearson : 2019 : 612 sidor :
ISBN: 9781292245423
Mandatory
Search Album, the University Library catalogue

Scentific articles will be added at the start of the module, approximately 100-150 pages in total.

Module 3

Larréché, J.-C. and Gatignon, H. (2018) Participant Handbook. StratX International (available from Umeå School of Business and Economics) Larréché, J.-C. and Gatignon, H. (1998) Markstrat 3: The Strategic Marketing Simulation. South-Western College Publishing (available from Umeå School of Business and Economics) Reading instructions: Chapter 8. Consumer Analysis, pp.149-155 Chapter 10. Allocation of Resources, pp. 177-184

Scientific articles and cases will be added at the start of the module, approximately 30-40 pages in total.

Module 4

Wood Marian Burk
The marketing plan handbook [Elektronisk resurs]
Fifth edition, Pearson new international edition. : Harlow, Essex, England : Pearson Education Limited : [2014] : 1 online resource (ii, 213 pages) :
ISBN: 9781299961142 (MIL electronic bk.)
Mandatory
Search Album, the University Library catalogue

Course reference literature

Umeå School of Business, Economics and Statistics USBE. Thesis writing in Business Administration. Thesis manual. (latest edition)
USBE Business Administration :
https://www.umu.se/en/student/usbe/thesis-and-degree-project-work/