e-Commerce (ECOM) 320

Overview of e-Commerce (Revision 9)

ECOM 320 Course Cover

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online with eTextbook

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Applied Studies
(Business and Administrative Studies)

Prerequisite: None

Centre: Faculty of Business

ECOM 320 has a Challenge for Credit option.

Check availability


ECOM 320: Overview of e-Commerce is a three-credit, senior-level course at Athabasca University. This foundational course focuses on principles of e-commerce from a business perspective. This course provides an overview of business and technology topics, business models, virtual value chain, and innovation and marketing strategies. In addition, some of the major issues associated with e-commerce—security, privacy, intellectual property rights, authentication, encryption, acceptable use policies, and legal liabilities—will be explored.


ECOM 320 consists of the following 11 lessons of study. Each lesson is designed to teach you the concepts, principles, and case-study skills that will enable you to achieve the course objectives.

  • Lesson 1: Introduction to e-Commerce
  • Lesson 2: e-Commerce Infrastructure
  • Lesson 3: Business Models and e-Commerce
  • Lesson 4: Digital Business Strategy
  • Lesson 5: e-Commerce Systems Analysis and Design
  • Lesson 6: Supply Chain Management and e-Commerce
  • Lesson 7: Marketing Strategies and e-Commerce
  • Lesson 8: e-Commerce Security and Controls
  • Lesson 9: Electronic Payment Systems
  • Lesson 10: Legal and Ethical Issues in e-Commerce
  • Lesson 11: Social Commerce and Other Issues in e-Commerce


To receive credit for ECOM 320, you must complete three written assignments and pass a Midterm Examination and a Final Examination. The passing grade for each examination is 50 percent. In addition, you must achieve an overall course grade of at least D (50 percent).

Activity Weighting
Assignment 1 10%
Assignment 2 10%
Assignment 3 10%
Online Participation 10%
Midterm Exam 20%
Final Exam 40%
Total 100%

*Marks for online participation will be awarded both on the quantity and quality of your contributions. You are expected to provide pertinent comments and thoughtful insight to the discussion.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Note: All examinations for this course are taken online, and must be taken at an invigilated location. It is your responsibility to ensure a computer with an Internet connection and a current web browser is available for your use at the invigilation centre.

Course Materials

Custom Textbook

Registration in this course includes an electronic textbook. For more information on electronic textbooks, please refer to our eText Initiative site.

e-Commerce 2016: Business, Technology, Society (Custom Edition for Athabasca University) combines content from two textbooks.

Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, and 11 from:
Laudon, K. C., & Traver, C. G. (2016). e-Commerce 2016: Business, technology, society (12th ed.). Pearson.

Chapters 5, 6, and 11 from:
Chaffey, D. (2015). Digital business and e-commerce management: Strategy, implementation and practice (6th ed.). Pearson.

Other Resources

All other learning resources will be available online.

Challenge for Credit Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows you to demonstrate that you have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university-level course.

Full information about Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the ECOM 320 challenge registration, you must achieve a grade of at least 50 percent on the examination.

Online Exam (3 hours)

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 9, August 25, 2016.

View previous syllabus