2023-2024 / MARK0794-1

Consumer Behavior


30h Th

Number of credits

 Master in management (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Extra courses intended for exchange students (Erasmus, ...)5 crédits 


Cécile Delcourt

Language(s) of instruction

English language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the first semester, review in January


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

(Update: September 2023)

Very important note: The course starts on 18th September 2023 at 9.00 AM. Groups and topics will be decided on that day. It is important to be there. 

Consumer behavior is "the study of the processes involved when individuals or groups select, purchase, use, or dispose of products, services, ideas, or experiences to satisfy needs and desires" (Solomon, 2015, p. 29).

After taking this course, you will be able to:

  • Gain a strong knowledge of the psychological processes consumers (of products, services, ideas, experiences, behaviors,...) are influenced by.
  • Use this knowledge to develop strategically relevant consumer insights by identifying key psychological reasons for why consumers in some situations behave the way they do.
  • Translate this knowledge into effective marketing decisions

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

This course specifically contributes to the following Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO):

  • ILO-2: Gaining the knowledge and understanding of one of the proposed fields of concentration or to gain deep knowledge in the field of the management being already specialized through a first University Master Degree.
  • ILO-4: To acquire the capacity to research autonomously and methodically the information needed to solve a complex, transversal management problem.
  • ILO-5: Integrate autonomously researched information, tools, knowledge and context to build and propose, either individually or as part of a team, original, creative and viable solutions to concrete complex management problems, whether real or simulated, taking into account, when necessary, the human, social and legal context.
  • ILO-7: Being capable of professional team work.
  • ILO-9: Developing a critical sense.
  • ILO-10: Developing a transversal, global vision. 
  • ILO-11: Creative conception of solutions.
  • ILO-12: Professional capacity for oral communication.
  • ILO-13: Professional capacity for written communication.  

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

You are responsible for checking whether you meet the following prerequisites. In case you do not meet them, you are NOT allowed to take this course.

!!! IMPORTANT You should have followed at least one course of "Marketing Research" https://www.programmes.uliege.be/cocoon/en/cours/MARK0793-1.html). Accordingly, you should master the concepts covered in this course prior to taking the course of "Cpnsumer Behavior". For instance, you will be asked to collect, analyze, summarize, and report primary as well as secondary data as part of the "Nudge Challenge" (Group project); such knowledge and skills should have been obtained previously.

The "Marketing Research" course relies on the following textbook (COMPULSORY reading):
Malhotra N., Nunan D., Birks D. (2017), Marketing Research: An Applied Approach, 5th Edition, Pearson Education. Complementary resources available on Lol@ (check MARK0783).

Hereafter follows an overview of the chapters that are examined:
(1) with a theoretical and practical perspective during the lectures (in bold),
(2) with a practical perspective only during the SPSS sessions (in italic),
(3) briefly discussed during the class the give an overview of the technique (in bold and italic)

  • Introduction to marketing research
  • Defining the marketing research problem and developing a research approach
  • Research design
  • Secondary data collection and analysis
  • (Internal secondary data and analytics)
  • Qualitative research: its nature and approaches
  • Qualitative research: focus group discussions
  • Qualitative research: in-depth interviewing and projective techniques
  • Qualitative research: data analysis
  • Survey and quantitative observation techniques
  • Causal research design: experimentation
  • Measurement and scaling: fundamentals, comparative and non-comparative scaling
  • Questionnaire design
  • Sampling: design and procedures
  • Sampling: determining sample size
  • Survey fieldwork
  • (Social media research)
  • (Mobile research)
  • Data integrity
  • Frequency distribution, cross-tabulation and hypothesis testing
  • Analysis of variance and covariance
  • Correlation and regression
  • Discriminant and logit analysis
  • Factor analysis
  • Cluster analysis
  • Multidimensional scaling and conjoint analysis
  • (Structural equation modelling and path analysis)
  • Communicating research findings
  • (Business-to-business (b2b) marketing research)
  • (Research ethics)
In addition of those chapters, students are introduced to the mediating and moderating variables.

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

Class will consist of a combination of theoretical lectures, case studies, group projects, guest lectures, and participative discussions/activities.

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

30 hours in face-to-face.

Recommended or required readings

Textbook: Solomon Michael R. (2015 or 2018), Consumer behavior: buying, having, and being, Harlow: Pearson, 11th or 12th edition.[1]
The textbook will provide the general framework for material to be covered in class. However, additional material will be presented in class that the student will be required to master as well. This additional material[2] includes and is not limited to:

  • Gleim, M. R., Smith, J. S., Andrews, D., & Cronin Jr, J. J. (2013). Against the green: A multi-method examination of the barriers to green consumption. Journal of retailing89(1), 44-61.
  • Goldstein, N. J., Cialdini, R. B., & Griskevicius, V. (2008). A room with a viewpoint: Using social norms to motivate environmental conservation in hotels. Journal of Consumer Research35(3), 472-482.
  • Goldstein, D. G., Johnson, E. J., Herrmann, A., & Heitmann, M. (2008). Nudge your customers toward better choices. Harvard Business Review86(12), 99-105.
  • Johnson, E. J., Shu, S. B., Dellaert, B. G., Fox, C., Goldstein, D. G., Häubl, G., ... & Wansink, B. (2012). Beyond nudges: Tools of a choice architecture. Marketing Letters23(2), 487-504.
  • Johnstone, M. L., & Tan, L. P. (2015). Exploring the gap between consumers' green rhetoric and purchasing behaviour. Journal of Business Ethics132(2), 311-328.
  • Kotler, P. (2011). Reinventing marketing to manage the environmental imperative. Journal of Marketing75(4), 132-135.
  • Lehner, M., Mont, O., & Heiskanen, E. (2016). Nudging-A promising tool for sustainable consumption behaviour?. Journal of Cleaner Production, 134, 166-177.
  • White, K., Hardisty, D. J., & Habib, R. (2019). The Elusive Green Consumer People say they want sustainable products, but they don't tend to buy them. Here's how to change that. Harvard Business Review97(4), 124-133.
    [1] Older or newer editions are also accepted. I just expect you to check whether chapters correspond from one to another version.
    [2] All scientific articles are available through the University Online Library (https://lib.uliege.be/fr/libraries/graulich), as long as you are connected to the local University network.

Exam(s) in session

January exam session

- In-person

written exam ( multiple-choice questionnaire, open-ended questions )

August-September exam session

- In-person

written exam AND oral exam

Written work / report

Continuous assessment

Additional information:

Grades in this course will be based on the following components:

  • Article presentation (in group): 5%
  • Nudge Challenge (in group): 45%
  • Final individual oral examination on the nudge, the scientific articles, and the material uncovered in class: 50%
  • Bonus for (constructive) class participation (malus can be applied too in case of, for example, non-participation to contests organized or absence to compulsory sessions). Please note that simply attending the class is not enough to get the most of this course. Instead, we expect you to be involved in the class dynamics by sharing your experiences and thoughts so that everyone benefits from your participation.
Important notes:

  • In order to pass the course, you MUST at least have 10/20 in the individual oral examination. In case you pass the Nudge Challenge and the article presentation BUT fail the oral examination, the grade of the final examination accounts for 100% of the final grade.
  • Any fraud or plagiarism in any activity leads to a final grade of 0/20. For further information about what plagiarism is, see the "Short Guide for ULiège Students" available here: https://www.enseignement.uliege.be/upload/docs/application/pdf/2017-07/plagiarism_-_not_for_me.pdf

Work placement(s)

Organisational remarks and main changes to the course

All documents and useful information will be provided through Lola.

Course registration deadline: September 25, 2023. Registration after the deadline is not allowed. Students who do not attend any of the first two sessions will not be assigned to any group for the Nudge Challenge, and accordingly will not be allowed to take part in the final examination. 

Participation in learning activities: Given the importance of taking part in the activities, the Article 37(§2) from the 'Academic and Examination Regulations' of the University of Liege is applicable. According to this article, I may declare students inadmissible for exams if they did not (1) submit their work in due time, or (2) take part in the core learning activities. In particular: students who did not actively participate in the "Nudge Challenge" (group project) are not allowed to take the final examination (of the 1st session).

Classroom behavior: In the interest of common courtesy, you are expected to turn off your cell phone for class and show up on time.

Class attendance: Class participation is key and taken into consideration in the final evaluation. Note that class attendance is MANDATORY in the following cases: group presentations, feedback sessions, and guest lectures. Your absence to the class is excused ONLY in case of an imperious reason (e.g., sickness), AND if you provide us by email with an official proof (e.g., medical certificate) as soon as you are aware of the imperious situation. When you meet an issue, send an email to the assistant (with Cécile Delcourt in cc.). An unexcused absence to a compulsory session will be penalized.



Prof. Dr. Cécile DELCOURT
Department of Marketing
Office: Rue Louvrex 14 (Building N1d-4th floor)
Email: Cecile.Delcourt@uliege.be
Contact hours: By appointment only.

Main Teaching Assistant

Office: Rue Louvrex 14 (Building N1d-4th floor)
Email: lisa.baiwir@uliege.be
Contact hours: By appointment only.

Association of one or more MOOCs