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Bachelor of Commerce in Digital Marketing 
90742  Bachelor of Commerce in Digital Marketing 
The Independent Institute of Education (Pty) Ltd 
CHE - Council on Higher Education  HEQSF - Higher Education Qualifications Sub-framework 
National First Degree  Field 03 - Business, Commerce and Management Studies  Marketing 
Undefined  370  Not Applicable  NQF Level 07  Regular-Provider-ELOAC 
Reregistered  SAQA 091/21  2021-07-01  2023-06-30 
2024-06-30   2029-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This qualification does not replace any other qualification and is not replaced by any other qualification. 

This qualification has the primary purpose of providing a well-rounded, broad education that equips learners with the knowledge base, theory and methodology of disciplines, and enables them to demonstrate initiative and responsibility in an academic or professional context. Principles and theory are emphasised as a basis for entry into the labour market, professional training, postgraduate studies, or professional practice in a wide range of careers. The Bachelor of Commerce: Digital Marketing will provide learners with a solid grounding in the application of marketing principles and techniques via information technologies.

The qualification would enable learners to follow a career in Digital Marketing that will allow them to use technology to communicate products, services and branding messages to a target audience to grow business. Learners will understand the conventional marketing approach and be able to fulfil the marketing function for a business and understand how technology is used effectively and efficiently to accomplish this. The qualification does not intend to provide a deep skill set in technology itself, but instead, includes adequate exposure to appropriate technologies to establish an understanding of how technology can be used for marketing in business, inclusive of search engine, mobile and online marketing. Marketers will thus be able to work with technology specialists and developers to guide them to implement marketing strategies effectively to achieve marketing objectives. This will enable them to adequately understand the challenges and opportunities presented by technology to develop and deploy Digital Marketing strategies for business in cooperation with technologists.

In addition, the qualification is designed to ensure that learners understand the business environment with regards to digital marketing, management, finances and project management, to enable them to understand business and its associated disciplines to make sound marketing decisions and to enter the industry as Digital Marketing specialists with confidence.

This qualification is designed to develop the knowledge and skills to meet the outcomes which are internationally and locally identified as critical for a career in this discipline. The specialist skill set covered in this qualification was identified by practising industry experts to comply with the need for Digital Marketing professionals focusing on online marketing solutions. Learners will be well-positioned to add value to the establishment that employs them; to pursue further studies in this field; or enable them to work as entrepreneur marketers or consultants in the industry.

To prepare learners for a career in Digital Marketing, the qualification focuses on conventional marketing principles, concepts and strategies and its application through the use of technology to promote marketing in a digital environment. To further inform this specialisation, business management and strategy are included, together with exposure to appropriate and relevant technologies.

Career opportunities available for learners are:
  • Marketing Director.
  • Marketing Consultant.
  • Content Coordinator.
  • Public Relations Officer/Representative.
  • Business Owner.
  • Communications Director.
  • Corporate Consultant.
  • Advertising Professional/Executive.
  • Digital Marketer.
  • Services Marketing.
  • Product Marketing.
  • Marketing Analyst.

    The need for this qualification emanated from the changing way in which individuals and businesses communicate in the modern business context. With the continual evolving of Information Technology the world of business has changed dramatically. Businesses communicate their brand and product information to customers via websites, emails and via SMSs to keep consumers informed. This shift now demands that companies use technology correctly and efficiently to ensure that they reach the correct target market and that their message is efficiently and competitively conveyed to ensure consumers will select their products and/or services over competitor offerings. This shift is of critical importance and businesses who do not use these services correctly will not gain competitive advantage.

    Technology such as e-commerce and the Internet have changed the way the world does business. It is imperative that specialist education be provided in the field of Digital Marketing to ensure that businesses achieve success through the development of their marketing strategies in line with the new economy for the new consumer. Marketers operating in the new economy must have the knowledge and skills to leverage technology aimed at optimising marketing activities to remain competitive through the creation of, inter alia, electronic client relationship management, social networking marketing and online reputation management. As marketing is about communicating the products, services and branding messages in an effective, efficient and professional manner to specific target markets to grow business, the use of technology is imperative to reach the correct target market and achieve a competitive edge for business continuity. In this respect emphasis is to be placed on search engine marketing, mobile marketing, e-mail marketing and affiliate marketing through the development and implementation of a digital marketing strategy.

    The qualification will provide graduates an opportunity to pursue further studies in marketing, branding, or advertising management. 

    It is assumed that learners are competent in:
  • Communication at NQF Level 4.
  • Mathematical Literacy at NQF Level 4.

    Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL):
    Learners can achieve this qualification in part through recognition of prior learning.
    Learners may apply for credits or exemptions for subjects already passed in-house or at other recognised institutions.
    Skills, knowledge and experience in respect of competencies acquired through informal and non-formal learning are also assessed in the RPL process for access into the programme.

    Access To Qualification:
  • Senior Certificate with matriculation exemption.
  • National Senior Certificate granting admission to Degree studies.
  • National Certificate(Vocational) Level 4 granting admission to Degree studies.
  • Candidates having attained the age of 23 before or during the first year of registration, with a Senior Certificate or equivalent with a minimum of 40% in at least four higher or standard grade subjects - including English - at least three of which shall have been passed simultaneously and one of which shall be a recognised higher grade subject.
  • Candidates having attained the age of 45 before or during the first year of registration. 


    The Bachelor of Commerce: Digital Marketing consists of 27 compulsory modules, totalling 370 Credits, at the following NQF levels:

    NQF Level 5:
    9 Modules totalling 95 Credits:
  • Accounting from a Business Perspective 1A, 12 Credits.
  • Accounting from a Business Perspective 1B, 12 Credits.
  • Digital Citizenship, 8 Credits.
  • Digital Marketing 1A, 10 Credits.
  • English Literacy, 5 Credits.
  • Marketing 1A, 12 Credits.
  • Marketing 1B, 12 Credits.
  • Understanding Business 1A, 12 Credits.
  • Understanding Business 1B, 12 Credits.

    NQF Level 6:
    10 Modules totalling 131 Credits:
  • Digital Marketing 1B, 10 Credits.
  • Managing the Business Environment 2A, 12 Credits.
  • Managing the Business Environment 2B, 12 Credits.
  • Marketing Management 2A, 18 Credits.
  • Marketing Management 2B, 18 Credits.
  • Principles of Macroeconomics, 12 Credits.
  • Principles of Microeconomics, 12 Credits.
  • Project Management, 12 Credits.
  • Digital Marketing 2A, 15 Credits.
  • Digital Marketing 2B, 10 Credits.

    NQF Level 7:
    8 Modules totalling 144 Credits:
  • Business Project, 14 Credits.
  • Digital Marketing 3A, 18 Credits.
  • Digital Marketing 3B, 18 Credits.
  • Information and Knowledge Management, 20 Credits.
  • Information Systems Strategy, 20 Credits.
  • Research Methodology and Practice - Work Intergrated Learnig, 18 Credits.
  • Strategic Management 3A, 18 Credits.
  • Strategic Management 3B, 18 Credits. 

    1. Develop and implement Marketing and Digital Marketing strategies within a business environment.
    2. Demonstrate a deep understanding of the success factors of a modern business.
    3. Identify appropriate technology solutions to implement a Digital Marketing strategy and to communicate services, products and branding messages to a specific target market.
    4. Collect analyse and interpret data to inform marketing strategy development.

    Critical Cross-Field Outcomes:
    All the Critical Cross-Field Outcomes are addressed in this qualification. 

    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit Level Outcome 1:
  • The role and purpose of marketing and Digital Marketing are defined within the business sector.
  • Marketing and Digital Marketing processes and relationships are contextualised to other areas of business.
  • Appropriate target markets are identified and defined as the focus of specific products and services.
  • Plans and strategies to meet marketing objectives are formulated and implemented.
  • Marketing and Digital Marketing requirements are identified and analysed to promote business succession.
  • Digital Marketing plans and strategies are developed and implemented to grow business.
  • A marketing plan relevant to the client's needs and intended target market is developed through the application of project management principles.
  • A Digital Marketing strategy is evaluated in the context of given marketing objectives.

    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit Level Outcome 2:
  • The relevance of market trends are identified and evaluated in the context of specific business and marketing risks.
  • The different business functions' respective roles and contribution to business success are related.
  • Economical and financial factors which may influence profitability and corporate economic well-being and impact on Digital Marketing applications are identified.
  • Digital Marketing budgeting, funding and financing strategies are identified and evaluated.
  • A critical understanding of the role of social, economic, political and technological forces is demonstrated when developing a Digital Marketing plan.

    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit Level Outcome 3:
  • The different technology solutions available to use in Digital Marketing solutions are evaluated and those most appropriate are selected to achieve specific objectives.
  • Information technology solutions most appropriate to communicate to specific target markets are identified.
  • Digital Marketing messages and communication campaigns are formulated and deployed to achieve specific marketing objectives aimed at managing client relationships and social networking.
  • Market analysis to identify gaps is conducted where a variety of Digital Marketing tools can be used within business to promote products/services.
  • Digital Marketing campaigns specific to selected technologies are developed to promote and enhance interaction between business and customers/clients.
  • A team of technologists to develop Digital Marketing solutions for various platforms such as search engine marketing, e-mail marketing and mobile marketing are guided.
  • Methodologies and techniques to organise and coordinate activities needed for efficient project completion are identified and applied.

    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit Level Outcome 4:
  • Gap analysis on Digital Marketing applications to achieve business objectives is performed.
  • Deductive, analytical, comparative and circumscriptive research methods to analyse market trends and Digital Marketing techniques applied within business environments is applied.
  • Research to assess, interpret and present findings relating to Digital Marketing applications and trends in a professional and academically sound manner is conducted.

    Integrated Assessment:

    Formative assessment:
    Learning and assessment are integrated. Continual formative assessment is required so that learners are given feedback on their progress in the achievement of learning outcomes.

    The scheme of work includes tests and assignments based on the learning material and learners are given feedback to guide them for successful completion of the qualification. The process is continuous and focuses on smaller sections of the work and outcomes which are assessed using an appropriate and relevant mixture of tests, assignments, portfolios of evidence, case study evaluations or analyses and practical projects.

    Summative assessment:
    Summative assessment is concerned with the judgement of the learning in relation to the Exit Level Outcomes of the qualification. Such judgement must include integrated assessments which test thlearners' ability to integrate the larger body of knowledge, skills and attitudes that are represented by the Exit Level Outcomes as a whole. Examinations, projects, laboratory reports or equivalent assessment such as a portfolio of evidence assess a representative selection of the outcomes practised and assessed in the formative stage. Summative assessment also tests the learners' ability to manage and integrate a large body of knowledge to achieve the stated outcomes of a module. 

    There are a number of international institutions that offer a qualification in Digital Marketing or dedicate modules within programmes to Digital Marketing. Some institutions refer to this focus as either online or digital marketing. However, upon closer investigation, it was evident that the terms Digital Marketing and online marketing are used synonymously to refer to marketing through the use of various information technology applications.

    Bachelor of Science in Digital Marketing offered by the Middlesex University:
    This qualification provides learners with the skills and knowledge to become marketers in the digital world. This qualification is jointly offered by the Business School and School of Engineering and Information Science. Similar to Bachelor of Commerce: Digital Marketing qualification, this qualification aims to introduce learners to the principles of Digital Marketing as well as the essentials of online consumer behaviour.

    Franklin University offers an eMarketing Degree Programme:
    As with the Digital Marketing qualification by The Independent Institute of Education (IIE), this Degree aims to integrate communication and Internet technology as a driving force in today's business world. The curriculum of the Franklin University's Degree focuses on the skills necessary to market products and services in the information age via the Internet, email, data-mining, datametrics and other web-based applications. Even though The Bachelor of Commerce: Digital Marketing aims to provide learners with knowledge on how to use these technologies for marketing purposes, it extends its technology application to also include technologies other than the web.

    European School of Economics offers a Bachelor Degree of Business Administration with Marketing:
    The aim of this qualification is to develop competent managers for a variety of managerial positions inclusive of marketing management. This qualification offers a solid theoretical as well as practical application to prepare graduates for the world of work. Other similarities include that both qualifications explore the complexities of modern business organisations, finance and marketing. The Bachelor of Commerce: Digital Marketing however, provides a more specialised focus on IT trends which is different from the programme offered by the European School of Economics.

    Murdoch University in Australia, BCom Marketing: Digital Marketing:
    This qualification is different from the Bachelor of Commerce: Digital Marketing, in that it offers Digital Marketing as a specialisation field in their BCom Marketing qualification. Even though similarities exist in terms of the offering of business practices and accounting, the focus of the Murdoch University qualification is on marketing in general with a specialisation module in e- or digital marketing in the third year of study.

    Bachelor of Business in Marketing offered by the Unitec Institute of Technology:
    This qualification focuses on providing learners with an insight into marketing and sales practices, marketing planning and strategy, Digital Marketing, international marketing and the marketing of services. It resonates with the qualification by The IIE as it provides detail on business practices and accounting, marketing as well as the use of technology to improve marketing possibilities.

    Based on the above analysis it is clear that even though the Bachelor of Commerce: Digital Marketing complies with relevant international qualifications it offers learners a more focused application on the use of a variety of technologies to promote marketing practices for business advancements. 

    This qualification articulates horizontally with the Bachelor of Business Administration: Marketing Management at NQF Level 7.

    This qualification articulates vertically with the Bachelor of Arts Honours: Marketing Communication at NQF Level 8. 

    The institution ensures the quality of its qualifications through a stringent process of internal and external control and quality assurance as set out in the relevant assessment policy.

    All summative assessments in the Exit Level modules are externally moderated while all others are internally moderated.

    The institution, which is a multi-site provider, has a sophisticated system of internal and external moderation to assure quality and ensure equity of provision. Feedback from moderators is used to improve the quality of assessment, material and learners support as well as to ensure fairness and validity in any particular examination cycle. External moderation is also used to ensure that the quality of the programme content and its assessment is comparable to that offered by other providers. 

    Assessors and moderators hold a qualification at least one level higher than the qualification being assessed or moderated. Moderators are also required to have more than two years' teaching experience. Assessors with less than two years' experience have their assessment work moderated by a peer. 



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    1. The Independent Institute of Education (Pty) Ltd 

    All qualifications and part qualifications submitted for public comment, or registered on the National Qualifications Framework, are public property. Thus, the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction: it is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.