School of Business and Management

Advertising (BUS213)

Semester: B
Level: 5
Module code: BUS213
Module organiser: Dr Amy Hackley

Module Overview

Advertising is changing. Fewer people are buying newspapers and watching TV shows in real time, and therefore fewer people are seeing traditional print and TV spot advertising. On the other hand, many more people are getting their information and entertainment from the Internet via mobile devices. Consequently, millions of people are getting their ideas on what to buy not from traditional advertising but from social media and online news and entertainment. Advertising agencies and brands are responding to changes in media consumption patterns by creating new, hybrid forms of advertising, such as content marketing, branded entertainment, product placement, programmatic advertising, and other promotional techniques for urban settings and social media. This does not mean that traditional advertising is going away, by any means, but it does mean that what we understand as advertising is changing, in two main ways. It is becoming broader as promotional disciplines that used to be treated as separate fields, such as public relations, sales promotion and sponsorship are becoming integrated into advertising campaigns. Secondly, traditional advertising has to be more creative, and more engaging, in order to be shared on social media. In this advertising module, then, we explore both traditional and new aspects of the field to try to understand their implications for theory and practice.


  • This module will approach advertising from a multi-disciplinary perspective drawing on socio-cultural, psychological and anthropological theories to impart an appreciation of advertising as a form of social communication.
  • The module will develop a critical engagement with advertising as a strategic managerial tool the planning of which is being complicated by trends towards media convergence and audience fragmentation.
  • The module will, in addition to its focus on contemporary advertising practice, explore advertising as a feature consumers’ social landscape, taking in social and ethical aspects.   

Learning Outcomes

Successful completion of the module will demonstrate that you should be able to

  • Use appropriate communication frameworks, concepts and theories to analyse the meaning of an advert
  • Recognise and evaluate elements of successful advertising
  • Critically evaluate the social implications of advertising practices
  • Describe the role of consumer research in the development of advertising


The assessment is in two parts: for the first part, as a group project, students are asked to create an advertisement as part of a campaign (40%). The other part is an examination (60%). Students usually find this module highly enjoyable, especially the coursework part.   

Core Text

Hackley, C. and Hackley, R.A. (2015), Advertising and Promotion, 3rd Edition, London: Sage, ISBN: 9781446280720.