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Syllabus:

Consumer Behavior and Marketing Strategy D, 15 Credits

Swedish name: Consumer Behavior and Marketing Strategy D

This syllabus is valid: 2012-08-27 valid to 2013-08-25 (newer version of the syllabus exists)

Course code: 2FE179

Credit points: 15

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

Contents

This marketing course is intended for students who want to increase their knowledge of aspects affecting consumer behaviour, and how such aspects can be analyzed. The modules are:
  1. Module Perspectives on strategy, 7.5 ECTS.  Perspektiv på strategi, 7.5 hp
  2. Module Consumer behaviour, 7.5 ECTS.  Konsumenters beteende, 7.5 hp

Module 1. Perspectives on strategy, 7.5 ECTS
The first module sets the stage for forthcoming course modules in marketing. The module highlights key issues for understanding and dealing with the challenges facing contemporary organizations in a globalised world. The students will gain interdisciplinary understanding of the business context and the intertwined nature of its events and processes. Alternative theoretical perspectives on strategy will be presented in order to provide a comprehensive platform for the forthcoming core courses. A distinction will here be made between the rational, decision-making oriented view in traditional management literature and the process-based, strategy-as-practice view in front-line research. Students will be trained to think strategically from both an internal and external perspective.

The students will develop capabilities and skills to deal with the knowledge-based challenges of firms and its value creation in new product, service and organizational development covering following topics: How organizations develop dynamic strategies, including choices and actions. How innovation emerges and develops into business ideas. How suitable marketing strategies are implemented in relation to customers, markets, competitors, and products.

Module 1 integrates theoretical insights with practical applications in a learning environment characterized by active student participation, both individually and in groups. Throughout the module the students are encouraged to develop their own strategic approaches.

In addition, students are introduced to what good scientific practice means, how students and instructors can create and maintain a constructive learning environment while preventing misconduct and fraudulent behavior such as plagiarism. Students are, therefore, required to carefully study the guide of ethical and professional behavior, which is aligned with the rules and regulations of Umeå University. Since knowledge of these rules and regulations are fundamental for coming courses and thesis writing this module includes a web-based test to ensure that students understand how to follow these guidelines in practice.

Expected learning outcomes:
After completing this module, the student should be able to:•Compare theoretical perspectives on management, entrepreneurship, and marketing strategies.
  • Evaluate organizations’ strategies with regard to current and future trends in the environment.
  • Propose solutions to cope with internal and external strategic challenges and complexities.
  • Propose appropriate strategies to meet key dilemmas of innovation, relating to product, process, organization, marketing and business models.
  • Critically reflect upon consequences of strategic choices and assess the need for further knowledge and skills.
  • Describe and apply ethical/professional learning and research conduct.

Focus of instruction:
The researchers and teachers of USBE and UmU are committed to and encouraged to emphasize their own special knowledge, research results, and know-how in their teaching. Beyond the interactive lectures and guest lectures, the tutoring incorporates reading seminars, case group work(s) and case seminars. The module requires significant amount of independent studies, meaning reading the assigned compulsory book chapters, articles, handouts, and writing self-governing case analyses. It is the responsibility of the students to come prepared for class and to actively participate in discussions. Case related group work will be carried out in teams of 3-5 students and reflection papers and oral presentations will be required.

Examination modes
The assessment of this module consists of seminars and papers, prepared and presented both individually and in groups, and an individual written exam. Due to the character of the topic, the students must attend the obligatory seminars and case presentations in order to pass the module. Furthermore, all students have to pass the web-based test on ethical behaviour and professional conduct. A passing grade is required for each part of the module.

Module 2.   Consumer Behavior, 7.5 ECTS
For companies to attain commercial success, it is important that managers understand consumer behavior. This course module, therefore, highlights the internal processes that occur within consumers´ minds and how knowledge of these processes can be useful for marketing strategies. This is emphasized because the success of companies’ marketing strategies depends upon managers’ understanding of consumer behavior. The theoretical models and practical examples discussed during the module will develop students’ understanding of the specific marketing concepts that are needed when analyzing consumer behavior. The module also contributes to consumer analysis with examples of marketing and consumer research that are discussed. This is important, as consumers’ buying decisions indicate how well the company’s marketing strategy meets demands in the market. Thus, this course module highlights how marketing begins and ends with the consumer.


Expected learning outcomes
After completing this module, the student should be able to:
  • dentify and analyze the internal processes related to consumer behavior,
  • establish and analyze how consumer behavior (models) can be useful in marketing strategies
  • develop and formulate marketing strategies based upon analyses of consumer behavior and assess and use the role of consumption in society
  • critically assess and evaluate different consumer research methods

Examination modes
The assessments of the module consist of seminars and papers, prepared and presented both individual and in groups, and an individual written exam. Due to the nature of the topic, the students must attend the obligatory seminars and case presentations in order to pass the module. Furthermore, each and every student has to pass the web-based test on ethical behavior and professional conduct. A passing grade is required for each part of the module.

Expected learning outcomes

See respective module

Required Knowledge

University: Courses in Business Administration (75 ECTS) At Basic level (A-level) and Intermediate level (B-level) a minimum of 60 ECTS in Management, Marketing, Accounting and Finance courses. At the C-level (Bachelor), a minimum 15 ECTS. Statistics or similar 7,5 ECTS. Language: Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish upper secondary course English B (IELTS (Academic) with a minimum overall score of 6.5 and no individual score below 5.5. TOEFL PBT (Paper-based Test) with a minimum score of 575 and a minimum TWE score of 4.5). TOEFL iBT (Internet-based Test) with a minimum score of 90 and a minimum score of 20 on the Writing Section).

Form of instruction

The principal teaching methods in this course are lectures, discussions, case studies, and seminars. Guest lecturers may be invited to present some of the contemporary marketing practices and how such approaches lead to more competitive market positions. With the use of teaching cases, students will have opportunities to participate in decision making and develop skills in structuring the necessary information. Seminars will be used to discuss the central topics of each module, and to illustrate the links between analyses and managerial decision making. The students are expected to read the assigned material and actively participate in case discussions.

Examination modes

See also respectively module above.

The following grading system will be used:
Pass with distinction (Väl godkänd, Vg, 75% or more),
Pass (Godkänd, G, 50% or more)
Fail (Underkänd, U, less than 50%).

To receive the grade Pass with distinction in the course, the student must have achieved at least 75% of the total of points in the separate modules or the equivalent

Students who fail to present a photo ID at the occasion of a written examination cannot have their results registered.

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.

Students who do not pass at the time of the normal written examination will be offered an opportunity to sit a further examination within a month. Beyond that, additional examination opportunities normally arise every academic year, one week prior to the start of the autumn term.

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.

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.

Lectures are normally not obligatory. However attendance is expected because the lectures are designed to facilitate students towards achieving course specific learning objectives. In addition lectures often provide insightful explanations of, and can supplement and provide contrast to, the course litterateur and other relevant course materials.

Student who has passed an examination can not redo the examination to get a higher grading.

Grades on the course are awarded when students have passed all examinations and compulsory course elements.


Academic credit transfer
Academic credit transfers are according to the University credit transfer regulations.

Other regulations

This is a course at the D-level in an MSc-degree at Umeå University. The course can also be included in study programs in Business Administration and Economics at Umeå School of Business and Economics.

Literature

Valid from: 2012 week 35

Exploring strategy
Johnson Gerry, Whittington Richard, Scholes Kevan
9. ed. : Harlow [etc.] : Prentice Hall : 2011 : xxiv, 562 s. :
ISBN: 0-273-73700-7 (pbk) : £44.88
Mandatory
Search the University Library catalogue

Solomon Michael R.
Consumer behaviour : a European perspective
4. ed. : New York : Prentice Hall/Financial Times : 2010 : xxvii, 700 p. :
ISBN: 978-0-273-71726-3 (pbk. : alk. paper)
Mandatory
Search the University Library catalogue

Business ethics : managing corporate citizenship and sustainability in the age of globalization
Crane Andrew, Matten Dirk
3. ed. : Oxford : Oxford University Press : 2010 : xxv, 614 s. :
ISBN: 978-0-19-956433-0 (pbk.)
Search the University Library catalogue

Umeå School of Business and Economics (latest edition)
Thesis writing in Business Administration. Thesis manual.
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