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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Business School : Business Studies

Undergraduate Course: Advertising: Theories and Practice (BUST10014)

Course Outline
SchoolBusiness School CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryAdvertising is a highly visible and pervasive marketing communications tool, constantly evolving in response to developments in media, technology, and the marketing industry. The effects of advertising are examined and debated by individual clients and agencies, the marketing industry in general, and those concerned about its role within society. This course enables students to develop a critical understanding of advertising (broadly defined) from the perspective of advertising planners, consumers and critics.
Course description The course is divided into four sections:

- Advertising in Context
- Advertising Planning
- Models of Advertising Effectiveness and
- Social/Cultural Effects of Advertising.

It seeks to relate theories or issues to examples of advertising where possible, and draws on practitioner as well as academic literature in relating theory to practice. Video material is used, providing insights into the development of particular campaigns as well as different perspectives on issue such as stereotyping and the communication of values in advertising. Practitioner input into the course is also intended to relate theory to practice.


- The advertising industry
- Advertising and brands
- Planning: developing advertising strategies and creative briefing
- Media planning
- Advertising Research
- Information processing, emotional response and the role of involvement
- Active audience models
- Social and cultural effects of advertising
- Tools for assessing advertising's social/cultural effects
- Advertising and regulation

Student Learning Experience:

Overall, the course aims to apply your knowledge and understanding of key concepts and theoretical frameworks in developing and justifying a creative brief and develop a critical understanding of advertising as an evolving marketing communications tool. Given the diversity of views amongst practitioners and critics about how advertising does or should work, you can gain a great deal from comparing your own views and experiences with those of others. The use of interactive lectures and small-group work is designed to encourage you to debate, discuss and apply theories to examples of advertising.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Marketing (BUST08004)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Year 4 only. Business Studies Honours Entry
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students must have at least 4 Business courses at grade B or above. This MUST INCLUDE at least one Marketing course at intermediate level. This course cannot be taken alongside BUST08004 Marketing. We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Explain the structure of the advertising industry.
  2. Offer a critical account of the process and context of advertising development, informed by both practitioner and academic literature on advertising.
  3. Critically evaluate advertising effects from different managerial and critical perspectives.
  4. Demonstrate a critical appreciation of particular advertisements as examples of persuasive communication.
  5. Locate and use appropriate advertising resources (traditional and on-line) to research particular issues.
Reading List
Key text:
Hackley, C. & Hackley, A.R. (2021) Advertising & Promotion, 5th edition, London: Sage.

Key website:

Key academic journals:

- International Journal of Advertising
- Journal of Advertising
- Journal of Advertising Research
- Journal of Consumer Research
- Journal of Marketing Communications
- Advertising & Society Review

Key practitioner magazines:
- Campaign
- Admap (available via WARC)
- AdWeek
- AdAge
- The Drum
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Knowledge and Understanding

After completing this course, students should be able to:
- Demonstrate a thorough knowledge and understanding of contemporary organisational disciplines; comprehend the role of business within the contemporary world; and critically evaluate and synthesise primary and secondary research and sources of evidence in order to make, and present, well informed and transparent
organisation-related decisions, which have a positive global impact.
- Identify, define and analyse theoretical and applied business and management problems, and develop approaches, informed by an understanding of appropriate quantitative and/or qualitative techniques, to explore and solve them responsibly.

Cognitive Skills

After completing this course, students should be able to:
- Understand how to manage and sustain successful individual and group relationships in order to achieve positive and responsible outcomes, in a range of virtual and face-to-face environments.

Practice: Applied Knowledge, Skills and Understanding

After completing this course, students should be able to:
- Apply creative, innovative, entrepreneurial, sustainable and responsible business solutions to address social, economic and environmental global challenges.

Communication, ICT, and Numeracy Skills

After completing this course, students should be able to:
- Convey meaning and message through a wide range of communication tools, including digital technology and social media; to understand how to use these tools to communicate in ways that sustain positive and responsible relationships.
- Critically evaluate and present digital and other sources, research methods, data and information; discern their limitations, accuracy, validity, reliability and suitability; and apply responsibly in a wide variety of organisational contexts.
Course organiserDr Kristina Auxtova
Course secretaryMiss Isla Dalley
Tel: (0131 6)50 3900
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