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Are university students really customers? when illusion may lead to delusion for all!

Svensson, Goran and Wood, Greg 2007, Are university students really customers? when illusion may lead to delusion for all!, International journal of educational management, vol. 12, no. 1, pp. 17-28.

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Title Are university students really customers? when illusion may lead to delusion for all!
Author(s) Svensson, Goran
Wood, Greg
Journal name International journal of educational management
Volume number 12
Issue number 1
Start page 17
End page 28
Publisher Emerald Group Publishing
Place of publication Bingley, England
Publication date 2007
ISSN 0951-354X
Keyword(s) marketing theory
students
Summary Purpose – The marketing concept is an idea that has been adopted in non-marketing contexts, such as the relationships between universities and their students. This paper aims to posit that marketing metaphors are inappropriate to describe the student-university relationship.

Design/methodology/approach – The authors provide a conceptual discussion of the topic.

Findings – The use of marketing metaphors appears sometimes to be indiscriminate and the appropriateness to use them in student-university relationships is questioned in this article.

Research limitations/implications – This notion of students as customers has caused a misinterpretation of the relationship between universities and students.

Practical implications – Students should not be viewed as customers of the university, but as citizens of the university community. The contention contained within this paper is that the customer metaphor is inappropriate to describe students' relationships to universities.

Originality/value – The use of marketing buzzwords does not contribute to a correct description or an accurate understanding of the student-university relationship. On the contrary, misconceptions and misunderstandings flourish due to misleading terminology and contradictory vocabulary. These frameworks tend to be illusionary if used in non-marketing contexts, such as universities.
Notes Reproduced with the kind permission of the copyright owner.
Language eng
Field of Research 150399 Business and Management not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2007, Emerald Group Publishing
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30007053

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