The Attributes and Preference of Higher Educational Service: A MBA Program Case
|關鍵字:||多屬性決策、、、;管理碩士教育;教育行銷;聯合分析;multiattribute decision model;MBA education;educational marketing;conjoint analysis|
|摘要:||行銷學者認為消費者以「價值」來評估產品滿足其需要的整體能力；更進一步說，顧客會選擇他所認知可提供最大價值的產品。經濟理論則以「偏好」（preference）的概念來描述這類消費者選擇行為。Lancaster(1966, 1971) 主張產品應該被視為是若干個特徵（即屬性）所組成的集合（a collection of characteristics），而商品之所以有差異乃是其組成特徵（屬性）有差異，特徵愈相似的的商品其替代性愈高，消費者對商品的偏好乃決定於商品內涵的特徵，這個觀點確立了消費者效用乃來自多屬性的效用總和之概念。
這種牽涉複雜的多屬性購買決策，特別適用於分析高涉入的產品（服務）的消費者選擇行為，他們對某一特定產品的整體評估，是仔細地建立在其所察覺到的該產品的各種屬性、屬性的重要程度，以及各屬性間的取捨之上（Vriens & Hofstede, 2000），而且他們在面對這類多屬性決策的時候，會深入屬性比較所有選擇方案，選擇可以提供最大效用的一個產品（Keeney & Raiffa, 1976）。
一向被歸類為非營利事業的教育事業，其所提供的服務也被視為是高涉入（Smith & Cavusgil, 1984；何照義與吳昌融，1992），本研究也基於這種觀點，認為學習者在面對選擇一個虛擬管理碩士學程（Virtual MBA, VMBA）的時候，會花費時間、心力去選擇一個能產生最高效用的學程。因此，結合運用多屬性決策模式與行銷理論之STP架構來分析，嘗試瞭解在職進修者對於這類虛擬企管碩士學程的選擇決策，並做為市場區隔的依據。我們首先篩選了七種虛擬企管碩士學程屬性，並且進一步利用聯合分析（conjoint analysis）找出在職進修者的偏好結構，分析結果顯示全體受試者偏好的前三個屬性，分別是師資的實務能力、學位能否被教育部採認、以及學校的排名聲譽，並且合計佔了80%的重視程度。本研究也透過集群分析（cluster analysis）劃分在職學習者，並得到分別代表著強調師資實務能力、師資實務與學校聲譽、以及文憑等三個區隔。此外，本研究又以非計量多元尺度法進行產品的定位分析。最後，並提出實務與理論兩方面之意涵與建議。|
Scholars in the marketing field believed that consumers evaluate the satisfaction of a product based on its “value”; in another words, customers select the product with the highest values that they evaluated. However, in the economics field, the consumer choice behavior was described by the concept of “preference.” According to Lancaster’s (1966, 1971) approach, a product should be regarded as a collection of attributes, and the differences among such products were caused by the collection of each and different attributes. The more similar in the characteristics of the product, the more of the substitution effect would occur. Thus, consumers’ preferences towards a product are determined by the attributes of product’s content, and the concept of consumer utilities as a function of the sum of all attributes supported this viewpoint. Consumers purchased products due to the benefits resulted from the characteristics of such products. The purchase decision was made to enjoy the benefit from buying the product, not from the actual products. This multiattributes purchase philosophy was an extension of economics theory and consequently also deeply affected marketing theories and practices. This is exactly the reason why in the marketing field, product suppliers often deliberately differentiated their products in order to gain higher market share or more profit, due to fierce market competition. This multiattribute purchasing decision was best suited in the analysis of the consumer behavior in the “high involvement” products. Consumer evaluations of a specific product were based on the importance and substitutions of each attribute. When they faced multiattribute decisions, they would carefully compare and choose the product with the maximum utilities. The services provided by educational institutes were always regarded as “highly-involvement”. Based on this, the study considered that the students would choose the VMBA program with highest utilities. So we attempted to explore the decision of employed-learners on the VMBA program by applying multiattribute model and the STP’s framework in the marketing theory. We first selected seven VMBA program attributes, and then formulated students’ preference structure by using conjoint analysis. The results showed that the first three most important attributes almost accounted for eighty percent of the overall importance. These three attributes were instructors' real-world experience, the accrediation of the MBA program by the Ministry of Education, and the school reputation. In addition, this study also classified part time students by applying cluster analysis and subsequently found three clusters representing instructors' real-world capability, their practical experiences, school reputation, and degree. Besides, we use non-metric MDS for product position analysis. Finally, the researcher proposed theoretical and practical suggestions and implications.