Marketing - Management - University of Canterbury - New Zealand


What is Marketing?

Most people think that marketing and personal selling are the same. Our continuous exposure to advertising and sales pitches leads us to believe that marketing activities begin only when goods or services have been produced. But that's only the tip of the iceberg; marketing also involves analysing customer needs and securing information needed to design and produce goods or services that match buyer expectations using strategic research methods. The process applies to profit-oriented firms as well as for not-for-profit organisations.

Careers in Marketing

A variety of jobs draw on marketing skills. These include positions in sales, advertising, retail management and merchandising, product management, and market research. Most of these jobs require both quantitative and interpersonal skills. Marketing careers provide a lot of variety, since the roles and functions of marketers are constantly changing as the business environment changes. Marketing also provides a foundation for other career paths. For example, many chief executives begin their careers in marketing.

Who Should Study Marketing?

Marketing is a discipline that requires a mix of skills and abilities. The ability to manage both people and information is critical, as are good communication and problem solving skills.

To succeed in marketing, you must be tolerant of ambiguity and able to adapt to changing circumstances. Marketers need to take into account the perspectives of a variety of people, customers, suppliers and people with responsibility for the wide range of functions within an organisation.

They must also be aware of the activities of competitors and monitor legal, political, economic and cultural trends that may impact on their products.

Preparing for a Career in Marketing

Marketers create and utilise market research reports, sales forecasts, promotional budgets, and a wide variety of other quantitative information. Therefore, a sound understanding of statistics and quantitative methods is essential preparation for a career in marketing. The marketing function is closely intertwined with other functions within organisations, so the aspiring marketer should also have a firm understanding of basic accounting, finance and organisational behaviour. Marketing provides an interface between an organisation and the environment in which it operates. To effectively perform this function, marketers should have a general understanding of economic, legal and psychological issues as well as an appreciation of the forces that shape and change a culture.

None of the preceding skills can be used effectively unless the marketer is a proficient communicator, so good writing and speaking skills are also of great importance to those planning a career in marketing.

Courses at Canterbury

Entry is available to all students upon completion of prerequisites except for MKTG 390 which has limited entry based on a selection process.

Students intending to specialise in Marketing are required to pass the BCom core as well as MKTG 100.

BCom: core course requirements

For in-depth course information please refer to the Course Catalogue section of the UC Enrolment Handbook.


Required: At least five 'core' courses selected from:

(1) ACCT 102 Accounting and Financial Information
(2) INFO 123 Information Systems and Technology
(3) ECON 104 Introduction to Microeconomics
(4) MSCI 110 Quantitative Methods for Business or STAT 101 Statistics 1
(5) MGMT 100 Fundamentals of Management

(Subject to NZVCC CUAP approval due December 2010)

Students intending to complete the BCom majoring in Marketing must be credited with five compulsory core courses and the following:

Required: MKTG 100
Note: Students intending to major in Marketing must take ECON 104 rather than ECON 105 from the list of core courses.

Required: MKTG 201, MKTG 202, MKTG 204, MKTG 280

Required: At least 90 points from MKTG 301-390, including at least two of MKTG 301, MKTG 302 or MKTG 303. Note: Students intending to proceed to the BCom(Hons) in Marketing or MCom in Marketing must have passed MKTG 302 (or equivalent).

A recommended Bachelor of Commerce programme for someone who wishes to concentrate in marketing follows. To supplement this, courses in psychology, sociology, and languages are recommended, as are additional commerce courses.

Marketing Course Descriptions

Please note that these descriptions and prescriptions are a guide only.

You should look in the University Calendar for all requirements and information.

BCom Major in Marketing

Details of the B.Com major in Marketing can be found on

Alternative Programmes at Canterbury

  • Courses in marketing may form the core of a Bachelor of Commerce honours degree at Canterbury
  • Graduates with adequate grades may enter the honours programme
  • Recent graduates from other disciplines may take marketing courses as part of the postgraduate Diploma in Management
  • Graduates with work experience should consider the Diploma in Business Administration or Master of Business Administration (MBA) programmes
  • Brochures on each of these programmes are available from the Department of Management


For information about courses contact: or e-mail the relevant staff members teaching the courses.

Department of Management
University of Canterbury
Private Bag 4800
Christchurch 8140
New Zealand

For general information on University courses or enrolment procedures:

University Liaison Officer, Freephone: 0800 VARSITY (827 748) in New Zealand

International Enquiries telephone +64 3 364 2459