Destination and Cultures


    General Information

    Professor Information

    Professor Photo
    Alan Garcia
    (786) 691-4302
    By Appointment

    Course Description And Purpose

    This is a course designed as an undergraduate level course, which covers the basic concepts of tourism marketing strategies.  The course emphasizes on how cultural, social, geographical and human travel needs affect each destination. This course presents an insider ‘s perspective on the importance these factors have when marketing a destination and understanding the importance of culture. Topics covered include but not limited to globalization in the tourism industry, special characteristics of travel and tourism marketing, impact of tourism on culture, tourist behavior in cross-cultural context, culture types and levels, product formulation in travel and tourism.

    This course will consist of 15 modules and five projects. Module availability is open and must be completed in the week they are assigned. When assigned, projects will be due at the end of the week and graded within one week of submission. At the end of the course students will have learned the key elements of destination marketing.

    Course Objectives

    • To provide students with an understanding of the relationship between tourism destinations and the culture of each destination
    • To provide students with an understanding of different types and levels of cultures.
    • To provide students with an opportunity to research and analyze a destination’s marketing efforts.

    Learning Outcomes

    1. Students acquire a concise understanding of the role of cultural and geographical factors in the attractiveness of a tourist destination.
    2. Students develop strong knowledge about the travel and tourism industry.
    3. Develop critical thinking skills.
    4. Students will be able to analyze and evaluate different marketing campaigns.
    5. Students develop oral and written communication skills.
    6. The ability to do data analysis regarding tourism and sustainability.
    7. Understand what marketing research means in its travel and tourism context.

    Teaching Methodology

    This course will consist of lectures, learning exercises, class discussions, and the use of real world examples to compliment/contrast textbook material. This course is based in blackboard and has 15 modules where students read articles and view other materials and post on the blackboard discussion forum.

    This is a fully online course in which all of the instructional materials and activities are delivered through Blackboard, and/or other internet-based media.

    Important Information


    Please review the FIU's Policies webpage. The policies webpage contains essential information regarding guidelines relevant to all courses at FIU, as well as additional information about acceptable netiquette for online courses.

    Technical Requirements and Skills

    One of the greatest barriers to taking an online course is a lack of basic computer literacy. By computer literacy we mean being able to manage and organize computer files efficiently, and learning to use your computer's operating system and software quickly and easily. Keep in mind that this is not a computer literacy course; but students enrolled in online courses are expected to have moderate proficiency using a computer. Please go to the "What's Required" webpage to find out more information on this subject.

    Please visit our Technical Requirements webpage for additional information.

    Accessibility And Accommodation

    The Disability Resource Center collaborates with students, faculty, staff, and community members to create diverse learning environments that are usable, equitable, inclusive and sustainable. The DRC provides FIU students with disabilities the necessary support to successfully complete their education and participate in activities available to all students. If you have a diagnosed disability and plan to utilize academic accommodations, please contact the Center at 305-348-3532 or visit them at the Graham Center GC 190.

    Please visit our ADA Compliance webpage for information about accessibility involving the tools used in this course.

    Please visit Blackboard's Commitment Accessibility webpage for more information. 

    For additional assistance please contact FIU's Disability Resource Center.

    Academic Misconduct Statement

    Florida International University is a community dedicated to generating and imparting knowledge through excellent teaching and research, the rigorous and respectful exchange of ideas and community service. All students should respect the right of others to have an equitable opportunity to learn and honestly to demonstrate the quality of their learning. Therefore, all students are expected to adhere to a standard of academic conduct, which demonstrates respect for themselves, their fellow students, and the educational mission of the University. All students are deemed by the University to understand that if they are found responsible for academic misconduct, they will be subject to the Academic Misconduct procedures and sanctions, as outlined in the Student Handbook.

    Academic Misconduct includes: Cheating – The unauthorized use of books, notes, aids, electronic sources; or assistance from another person with respect to examinations, course assignments, field service reports, class recitations; or the unauthorized possession of examination papers or course materials, whether originally authorized or not. Plagiarism – The use and appropriation of another’s work without any indication of the source and the representation of such work as the student’s own. Any student who fails to give credit for ideas, expressions or materials taken from another source, including internet sources, is responsible for plagiarism.

    Learn more about the academic integrity policies and procedures as well as student resources that can help you prepare for a successful semester.

    Expectations Of This Course

    This is an online course, which means most (if not all) of the course work will be conducted online. Expectations for performance in an online course are the same for a traditional course. In fact, online courses require a degree of self-motivation, self-discipline, and technology skills which can make these courses more demanding for some students.

    Students are expected to:

    • Review the how to get started information located in the course content
    • Introduce yourself to the class during the first week by posting a self-introduction 30 second video assignment in the appropriate discussion forum
    • Take the practice quiz to ensure that your computer is compatible with Blackboard
    • Interact online with instructor/s and peers
    • Review and follow the course calendar
    • Log in to the course 3 times per week, with no more than three days between logging in.
    • Respond to Supplemental Reading Posts, blogs, and journal postings in the timeframe established by the module.
    • Respond to emails, phone calls, or text messages within 1 day.
    • Submit assignments by the corresponding deadline.
    • Complete all assignments independently.

    The instructor will:

    • Log in to the course 3 times per week
    • Respond to Supplemental Reading Posts within 5 days.
    • Respond to emails/messages within 3 days.
    • Grade assignments within 5 days of the assignment deadline.

    Course Prerequisites

    There are no prerequisites for this course.


    Textbook Image
    Marketing in Travel and Tourism
    Victor Middleton, Alan Fyall, Mike Morgan, Ashok Ranchhod
    Routledge, 4th Edition, 2009
    ISBN-10: 0750686936
    ISBN-13: 9780750678971
    Book Info. You may purchase your textbook online at the FIU Bookstore.
    Textbook Image
    International Tourism
    Yvette Reisinger, Frederic Dimanche
    Routledge, 1st Edition, 2011
    ISBN-10: 0750678976
    ISBN-13: 9780750678971
    Book Info. You may purchase your textbook online at the FIU Bookstore.

    Course Detail

    Course Communication

    Communication in this course will take place via Email and professor announcements.

    The Email feature is an external communication tool that allows users to send emails to users enrolled within the course. Emails are sent to the students’ FIU email on record. The Email tool is located on the Course Menu, on the left side of the course webpage.

    Visit our Writing Resources webpage for more information on professional writing and technical communication skills.

    Supplemental Reading Posts

    Each module contains a Supplemental Reading Post where students must submit one post per week. The goal of the post is for the student to describe the lessons learned in the material which they believe applies to their management career ahead. Critique of the material is also welcome.

    Each week students will:

    1. be asked to comment on two of the items (Items include journal articles and videos) in the Supplemental Reading Post module
    2. find an academic peer-reviewed article similar to one of the items to attach to their post. Some modules have as many as 10 items to choose from, but you only need to comment on two items. 

    The post should be in the form of a single thread with all of the topics included in the one thread. The thread should contain three to five to eight sentences per item and have an attached PDF version of the student’s new article attached. If there are both articles and videos, a student should choose one of each..In the case, you only find articles and no videos, you do two articles and vice versa.

    A sample post will be provided in the first Supplemental Reading Post.


    • The approximate length of a response: 9-15 sentences (3-5 sentences per item (article/video)).
    • Students are not required to respond to other student’s posts.
    • Each forum is only available for the dates listed in the forum.
    • All posts are due by Sunday at 11:59 PM of the week of the module. 
    • Posts are worth two points each.
    • Students will be evaluated on their ability to utilize the concepts presented in the text to explain how these articles and videos inform their management career ahead.
    • Grades will normally be posted within 5 days.  
    • Feedback for the Supplemental Reading Post will be provided when the student is not on track.
    • Emailed submissions will not be accepted.
    • No group work is required.
    • No attachments! Use the space provided on the board to write or paste your post.

    Keep in mind that other members of the course will likely see your discussion forum postings. Care should be taken when determining what to post.

    Discussion Forums

    Keep in mind that your discussion forum postings will likely be seen by other members of the course. Care should be taken when determining what to post.


    Quiz Expectations:

    • Quizzes are worth two points each. 
    • Students will be allowed two attempts for all quizzes. 
    • The duration of each quiz will be 30 minutes. 
    • Quiz results will be immediately available to students. 
    • All quizzes are due by Sunday at 11:59 PM of the week of the module. 
    • Quizzes will only be accepted on the dates established. 
    • Make up work will only be considered accompanied by proper medical documentation which has been presented within a week of the event.
    • Emailed submission will not be accepted. 

    Final Exam Expectations:

    • This course will include one final exam. 
    • Students will be allowed one attempt.
    • The duration will be two hours. 
    • The exam will be administered online at the end of the course.
    • A time and date will be provided during the semester.
    • The exam score will be available immediately upon submission.

    In order to mitigate any issues with your computer and online assessments, it is very important that you take the "Practice Quiz" from each computer you will be using to take your graded quizzes and exams. It is your responsibility to make sure your computer meets the minimum hardware requirements.

    Assessments in this course are not compatible with mobile devices and should not be taken through a mobile phone or a tablet. If you need further assistance please contact FIU Online Support Services.


    Students will be assigned five projects due approximately on a weekly basis and graded within one week of submission.

    • Please see the course calendar for suggested dates of completion. 
    • Projects must be submitted by the dates posted below to receive full credit. 
    • Projects may be submitted until the last date of availability for a one-letter grade penalty for each date after the due date. 
    • Projects will be completed independently; no group submissions are allowed. 

    Please review general instructions for each. 

    Complete grading criteria are provided in the course. 

    • Project 1: Video Assignment 1 (5 points)
    • Project 2: Travel Planning (5 points)
    • Project 3: Tourism and Sustainability (5 points)
    • Project 4: Marketing Digest (8 points)
    • Project 5: Video Assignment 2 (5 points)



    Course Requirements Number of Items Points for Each Weight
    Quizzes  10 2 20%
    Supplemental Reading Posts 14 2 28%
    Projects 5 5-8 28%
    Final Exam  1 24 24%
    Total 30 N/A 100%
    Letter Range (%) Letter Range (%) Letter Range (%)
    A Above 95 B 83 - 86 C 70 - 76
    A- 90 - 94 B- 80 - 82 D 60 - 69
    B+ 87 - 89 C+ 77 - 79 F < 59

    Course Calendar

    Weekly Schedule

    Module Topic Items Due

    Module 1

    Aug 20

    Globalization, Tourism and Culture

    Project 1: Video Assignment 1

    Supplemental Reading Post 1

    Quiz #1

    Module 2

    Aug 27

    Introducing Travel and Tourism

    Supplemental Reading Post 2

    Quiz #2

    Module 3

    Sep 3


    Supplemental Reading Post 3

    Quiz #3

    Module 4

    Sep 10

    Special Characteristics of Travel & Tourism Marketing / Cultural Influences on Service

    Supplemental Reading Post 4

    Quiz #4

    Module 5

    Sep 17

    The dynamic business environment: Factors Influencing Demand for Tourism Supplemental Reading Post 5

    Module 6

    Sep 24

    Understanding the Consumer / Human Behavior

    Supplemental Reading Post 6

    Project 2: Travel Planning

    Module 7

    Oct 1

    Cultural Influences on Social Interaction / Cultural Practices & Tourism Impacts on Culture

    Supplemental Reading Post 7

    Quiz #5

    Module 8

    Oct 8

    Marketing Segmentation for Travel & Tourism Markets / Product Formulation in Travel & Tourism

    Supplemental Reading Post 8

    Quiz #6

    Module 9

    Oct 15

    The Evolving Marketing Mix for Tourism Services

    Supplemental Reading Post 9

    Project 3: Tourism and Sustainability

    Quiz #7

    Module 10

    Oct 22

    Planning Marketing Strategy / 7 Points of Branding

    Supplemental Reading Post 10

    Quiz #8

    Module 11

    Oct 29

    Marketing Planning: The Process

    Supplemental Reading Post 11

    Quiz #9

    Module 12

    Nov 5

    Integrating the Promotional and Communication Mix / Social Media

    Supplemental Reading Post 12

    Project 4: Marketing Digest

    Module 13

    Nov 12

    Marketing Tourism Destinations

    Supplemental Reading Post 13

    Quiz #10

    Module 14

    Nov 19

    Integrated Marketing Communications Through a Destination Management System

    Supplemental Reading Post 14

    Module 15

    Nov 26

    Layover / Smart Traveler

    Project 5: Video Assignment 2 - Lessons Learned

    Module 15

    Dec 3