GRA 6433 Theories and Methods in Marketing Communication


GRA 6433 Theories and Methods in Marketing Communication

Responsible for the course
Bendik Meling Samuelsen, Klemens Knöferle

Department of Marketing

According to study plan

ECTS Credits

Language of instruction

Communication is a fundamental part of most marketplace transactions. In its purest form, price communicates the information necessary for a transaction. In most other deviations from perfect competition, marketers have to communicate more than price in order to establish, sustain, and grow their business. This course aims to provide a deep understanding for theoretical perspectives on marketing communication as a field of scientific research.
The course will draw extensively on influential research in advertising and sensory marketing, and we will give detailed attention to theoretical and methodological challenges in these research areas. In other words, this is not a course on how to create advertising, but a course about the premises of how communication works, and how to assess communication effects.

Learning outcome
The primary learning goal of this course is to enable students to address the managerial challenges of marketing communication in an analytical manner. To this end, the course establishes a sound platform of knowledge based on two research streams: (1) Theories of attitude formation and persuasion from social psychology (e.g., dual process theories like the elaboration likelihood model (ELM) and the heuristic-systematic model (HSM)) can provide marketers with rich insights into how consumers process the information contained in marketing communications. (2) Theories of sensory perception and attention from cognitive psychology allow marketers to understand better how the sensory aspects of their communications affect consumer behaviour. An additional learning outcome is the ability to create experimental designs that can test communication effects.

GRA 4145 Brand Management or equivalent
All courses in the Masters programme will assume that students have fulfilled the admission requirements for the programme. In addition, courses in second, third and/or fourth semester can have spesific prerequisites and will assume that students have followed normal study progression. For double degree and exchange students, please note that equivalent courses are accepted.

Compulsory reading

Collection of articles:
Compilation of articles

During the course there may be hand-outs and other material on additional topics relevant for the course and the examination.

Recommended reading

Course outline
Communication process entities
- Source
- Message
- Recipient
- Context
- The information processing perspective/persuasion
- Attitudes and persuasion
- Dual process models
- The sensory perspective
- Sensory perception
- Multisensory interactions
- Attention
- Learning, priming, and fluency
- Methodological issues in communication research

Computer-based tools

Learning process and workload
A course of 6 ECTS credits corresponds to a workload of 160-180 hours.

Part one: Marketing communication from a managerial perspective
Part two: cognitive premises for communication effects
Part three: Principles of persuasion in advertising

Please note that while attendance is not compulsory in all courses, it is the student’s own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class that is not included on the course homepage/It's learning or text book.

The course grade will be based on the following activities and weights:
- Term paper 60%, written individually or in groups of max 3 students (in special circumstances individually)
- 3-hour written examination 40%

The term paper shall be submitted in three (3) printed copies, and additionally, one electronic copy through Ephorus in It's learning in order to scan for plagiarism.

Form of assessment Weight Group size
Term paper 60% Optional (individual or group of max 3 students)
Written examination 3 hours 40% Individual

Specific information regarding student assessment will be provided in class. This information may be relevant to requirements for term papers or other hand-ins, and/or where class participation can be one of several components of the overall assessment. This is a course with continuous assessment (several exam components) and one final exam code. Each exam component is graded using points on a scale from 0-100. The final grade for the course is based on the aggregated mark of the course components. Each component is weighted as detailed in the course description. Students who fail to participate in one/some/all exam components will get a lower grade or may fail the course. You will find detailed information about the points system and the mapping scale in the student portal @bi.

Examination code(s)
GRA 64331 continuous assessment accounts for 100% of the final grade in the course GRA 6433.

Examination support materials
Bilingual dictionary
Permitted examination support materials for written examinations are detailed under examination information in the student portal @bi. The section on support materials and the use of calculators and dictionaries should be paid special attention to.

Re-sit examination
It is only possible to retake an examination when the course is next taught. The assessment in some courses is based on more than one exam code. Where this is the case, you may retake only the assessed components of one of these exam codes. All retaken examinations will incur an additional fee. Please note that you need to retake the latest version of the course with updated course literature and assessment. Please make sure that you have familiarised yourself with the latest course description.

Additional information
Honor Code
Academic honesty and trust are important to all of us as individuals, and represent values that are encouraged and promoted by the honor code system. This is a most significant university tradition. Students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with the ideals of the honor code system, to which the faculty are also deeply committed.

Any violation of the honor code will be dealt with in accordance with BI’s procedures for cheating. These issues are a serious matter to everyone associated with the programs at BI and are at the heart of the honor code and academic integrity. If you have any questions about your responsibilities under the honor code, please ask.