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Albers School of Business and Economics

Marketing Major

What is Marketing?

Marketing has two meanings in business: First, marketing is a strategic consumer orientation--firms should use as their principle objective the satisfaction of the wants and needs of their customers and other stakeholders. Consumers are free to choose from any competitor; they choose in order to maximize their own set of benefits. No matter what the quality of a firm's product, the efficiency of its logistics, the accuracy of its books, the soundness of its financing, if its offering does not meet consumer needs, it will not succeed. To support a consumer orientation, marketing emphasizes an understanding of buyers, both consumers and organizations, and their decision processes, as well as an understanding of the research methods associated with scientific study of the marketplace.

Second, marketing refers to the management of all the ways in which the firm and its external stakeholders interact. These management functions include the design of the product (goods and services), establishing prices, delivery of the product (time and place), promotion (advertising, personal selling, public relations, social media, sales promotion, and other branding activities), plus marketing research.

What Makes a Good Marketer?

Because marketing is always either focused on or based upon consumers, people skills are important. Not the "glad-handing/back-slapping" stereotype of a used car salesman--deep people skills: An understanding of human behavior; a sensitivity to peoples' needs and concerns; good verbal and listening skills. In many marketing jobs, of course, poise, confidence, and inter-personal skills are important; but, throughout marketing, it is crucial to empathize with people.

The ability to make good decisions when there is rarely a clear "right" answer is a special skill of good marketers. Both consumers and the competitive marketplace are changing, not only a constant change, but a rapid change. As a result, marketers typically face uncertainty. Their decisions are made, of course, about the future, which is always unpredictable. But, marketers deal with human behavior that has thousands of small influences, creating a complexity that may never be fully known. Consider, for example, the role of social media. Marketers know that Facebook and Instagram posts affect consumer perceptions. But, even if the millions of posts every day could be analyzed that same day, the results would not necessarily predict the next day. Every hour of every day, the world is changing.

Other key characteristics for marketers include flexibility, the ability to respond to the unexpected; problem analysis and synthesis, skill in identifying new problems and new solutions; and creativity.

Marketing Careers

A concentration in marketing may be an entry point to a wide range of career paths. Some are specialized: Marketing Research (research, focus group interviewing, experimental design, data analyst, as examples), Advertising execution, New Product Design. Many others are more general: Brand Manager, Product Manager, Retail Management, Personal Selling or Sales Management. Almost all industries require marketing, including the arts, non-profits, and sports/entertainment/celebrity management.

Program Requirements

From Seattle University's 2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog.

In order to earn the bachelor of arts in business administration degree with a major in marketing, students must complete a minimum of 180 quarter credits with a cumulative and major/program grade point average of 2.25, including the following:

I. University Core Curriculum Requirements

55 credits, including:

Module I

Course NumberCourse TitleCredits
UCOR 1100 Academic Writing Seminar 5
UCOR 1200 Quantitative Reasoning (satisfied in major)  
UCOR 1300 Creative Expression and Interpretation 5
UCOR 1400 Inquiry Seminar in the Humanities 5
UCOR 1600 Inquiry Seminar in the Social Sciences 5
UCOR 1800 Inquiry Seminar in the Natural Sciences 5

Module II

Course NumberCourse TitleCredits
UCOR 2100 Theological Explorations 5
UCOR 2500 Philosophy of the Human Person 5
UCOR 2910 Ethical Reasoning Business 5

Module III

Course NumberCourse TitleCredits
UCOR 3100 Religion in a Global Context 5
UCOR 3400 Humanities and Global Challenges 5
UCOR 3800 Natural Sciences and Global Challenges 5

II. Albers Business Foundation Requirements

82 credits, including:

Course NumberCourse TitleCredits
BUAD 1000 Albers Essentials of Business Integration
(must be taken first quarter)
ACCT 2300 Principles of Accounting I 5
ACCT 2310 Principles of Accounting II 5
BCOM 2800 Business Communication 5
ECON 2100 Business Statistics 5
ECON 2110 Principles of Economics—Micro 5
ECON 2130 Principles of Economics—Macro 5
ECON 3100 Quantitative Methods and Applications 5
IS 3150 Introduction to Information Systems 5
FINC 3400 Business Finance 5
MKTG 3500 Introduction to Marketing 5
OPER 3600 Manufacturing and Service Operations 5
BLAW 3700 Business and International Law 5
MGMT 3000 Principles of Management 5
MGMT 4890 Business Policy and Strategy 5
Choose one of the following two courses: 5
INBU 3200 Global Environment of Business  
ECON 3130 Global and Domestic Macroeconomics  
Calculus, choose one of the following two courses: 5
MATH 1130 Elements of Calculus for Business  
MATH 1334 Calculus I  

EXCEL Requirement

All business students entering SU summer 2012 or later are required to pass the EXCEL Level I Certification Exam as a requirement for graduation.

For details, see the Excel Certification page.

III. Major Requirements

25 credits, including:

Course NumberCourse TitleCredits
MKTG 3510 Buyer Behavior 5
MKTG 4510 Marketing Research 5
MKTG Electives* 15
*Choose from MKTG 3520, 3540, 3560, 3570, 3580, 4520, 4560, 4600, 4910, or other approved 3000- or 4000-level marketing courses.

IV. Additional Requirements

Course TitleCredits
General Electives to total 180 credit hours 18

Please note:

  1. ECON 3110 and 4720 are strongly recommended as general electives.
  2. Internships or independent studies may not be used to satisfy major requirements.

* Major requirements must earn a C- grade or better.