MRK491 - Consumer Behaviour

Outline info
Last revision date 2018-07-20 13:51:02.723
Last review date 2018-07-20 13:51:11.913

Subject Title
Consumer Behaviour

Subject Description
This subject introduces the student to the application of concepts of the behavioural sciences, principally psychology and sociology, to the study of why consumers buy (or don't buy) products and services. The approach covers market segmentation, environmental influences, individual determinants and the consumer decision process.

Credit Status
One full credit

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

1. Describe the processes involved in consumer behaviour.
2. Demonstrate analytical and communication skills through case analyses and presentations.
3. Demonstrate effective research skills and strategies.
4. Discuss the ethical component of marketing decisions and strategies.
5. Apply the consumer decision model to marketing strategy decisions and be capable of relating it to the topics discussed throughout the term.
6. State the key demographic trends in Canada and be able to locate, interpret and relate demographics to buying behaviour.
7. Identify characteristics common to all cultures as well as the main subcultures in Canada in order to illustrate the marketing implications.
8. Define social class structures and utilize this data as a segmentation variable.
9. Use the multiple item indexes to derive social classes for any given individual and relate it to buying behaviour.
10. Explain the characteristics, types and concepts of reference groups and their influence on individual behaviour.
11. Define and explain the four theories of personality and the relationship between the consumer decision model and the personality.
12. Explain the three models of learning and the concept of shaping in order to use them, with the consumer decision mode, to make marketing decisions.
13. Apply the three theories of motivation to help predict consumer behaviour.
14. Employ the perception principles to marketing decisions.
15. Determine which cues consumers use in selecting products.
16. Discuss information processing as it relates to marketing.
17. Explain new product concepts based on the factors influencing adoption and diffusion.
18. Identify innovators and opinion leaders and how to use this information in strategies for launching new products.
19. Demonstrate effective written and oral communication skills through assignments and test.

Cheating and Plagiarism
Each student should be aware of the College's policy regarding Cheating and Plagiarism. Seneca's Academic Policy will be strictly enforced.

To support academic honesty at Seneca College, all work submitted by students may be reviewed for authenticity and originality, utilizing software tools and third party services. Please visit the Academic Honesty site on for further information regarding cheating and plagiarism policies and procedures.

All students and employees have the right to study and work in an environment that is free from discrimination and/or harassment. Language or activities that defeat this objective violate the College Policy on Discrimination/Harassment and shall not be tolerated. Information and assistance are available from the Student Conduct Office at

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Disabilities Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.


Topic Outline
Seminars, lectures and workshops will afford a learning experience on the following topics: 

  • An overview to the components of this subject 
  • Canadian demographics
  • Canadian culture and subcultures 
  • Social class in Canada
  • Reference groups 
  • Personality and lifestyles 
  • Learning
  • Motivation 
  • Perception 
  • Cues and learning
  • Consumer information processing 
  • Adoption and diffusion 

Mode of Instruction
A combination of teaching methods will be utilized which may include lectures, case studies, discussions, group and individual work.

Prescribed Texts
Title:         CB  (with CourseMate Printed Access Code (6 months))
Edition:     2nd CDN Edition
Author:      Babin / Harris / Murray
Publisher:  Nelson Education Ltd.
ISBN-13:    9780176791797

Reference Material

Required Supplies

Promotion Policy

Grading Policy
A+ 90%  to  100%
A 80%  to  89%
B+ 75%  to  79%
B 70%  to  74%
C+ 65%  to  69%
C 60%  to  64%
D+ 55%  to  59%
D 50%  to  54%
F 0%    to  49% (Not a Pass)
EXC Excellent
SAT Satisfactory
UNSAT Unsatisfactory

For further information, see a copy of the Academic Policy, available online ( or at Seneca's Registrar's Offices.

Modes of Evaluation
Assignments are due on the dates specified. Should extenuating circumstances arise, please contact your instructor prior to the assignment due date so that an appropriate course of action can be established. Late assignments may be subject to a penalty of up to 10% per week and will not generally be accepted beyond two weeks from the due date.

In cases of cheating or plagiarism, the College Academic Policy will prevail. Please ensure that all assignments and reports are properly documented.

Students are referred to the following website for Seneca College Library style guides, Academic Honesty Policy and Copyright guidelines:   http:/

Dates for evaluations are specified in the weekly schedule addendum to this outline. The evaluation process may include, but is not limited to, tests, exams, assignments or presentations. Any absences or missed submissions due to medical or other reasons must be supported by medical or other appropriate documentation within one (1) week of the due date. The faculty and program area must be notified immediately in the event of a missed evaluation. Upon acceptance of the documentation, the weighting of the missed deliverable will normally be applied to the final exam.

English Competency
The ability to communicate effectively is essential for success in business. Therefore, you must demonstrate English competency in this course in both oral and written work. Ensure your written work includes correct sentence structure, spelling and punctuation. Always spell check, edit and proofread your work.

Grading is based on the following marking scheme:

Term Test 20%
2 Assignments 30%
Presentation of Project 20%
Final Exam 30%


Program Manager:
Emiliano Introcaso

Approved by: Academic Program Manager Emiliano Introcaso