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The Psychology of Selling and Advertising


Admission requirements

Master’s students with specialisation Economic and Consumer Psychology


One of the most important findings in Economic and Consumer Psychology is that preferences are not stable but rather are influenced by many different contextual factors, both consciously and unconsciously to the consumer. In this course we will take a closer look to these influences on preferences, more specifically from a marketers’ point of view. Assume you worked hard to build a beautiful product, or service. What is the best way to convince your buyers of the beauty of the product or service? What is the best way to present it? What cues can you best use to deliver your message? And what are the pitfalls of “bad advertising”? This course will focus on these questions. To answer them we will read classic and recent journal articles, which we will relate to real life examples of selling and advertising situations. At the end of the course students will have gained more insight in the psychology of selling and advertising and will be able to use their insights in practice.

Course objectives

  • Students have the knowledge of classic and recent findings on the psychology of selling and advertising

  • Students are able to formulate ideas about psychological and economic theories about selling and advertising and are able to put them into practice.

  • Students are able to use the selling and advertising skills that were discussed in the course to present their ideas efficiently.


The Psychology of Selling and Advertising (2010-2011):

Mode of instruction


Assessment method

Written assignments, presentations, and final exam.

From January 1, 2006 the Faculty of Social Sciences has instituted the Ephorus system to be used by instructors for the systematic detection of plagiarism in students’ written work. Please see the information concerning fraud .


Information on blackboard.leidenuniv.nl

Reading list

Selection of journal articles and book chapters


Introduction and enrolment for courses of the first semester will take place ion 2 September 2010. Introduction and enrolment for courses of the second semester will take place in January 2011. More information will be available at the website of the Institute of Psychology.

NB: Exam registration will take place via uSis, and will be open between a month and a week before the (re)exam. Students who haven’t registered, cannot participate in the exam.

Contact information

Dr. Marijke van Putten (semester 1)
Room 2A-13A
Tel: 071 5276845
E-mail: PuttenMvan@fsw.leidenuniv.nl

Dr. E.W. de Kwaadsteniet (semester 2)
Room 2A33
Tel: 071 527 4109
E-mail: kwaadsteniet@fsw.leidenuniv.nl