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Labor Studies Bulletin Table of Contents


Division of
Labor Studies
Academic Bulletin

Labor Studies Programs  
Division of Labor Studies 
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Bloomington, IN 47405 
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Labor Studies (LSTU) Courses

Course Information
Core Courses
Other Courses
Advanced Courses

Course Information

The following labor studies courses are offered in the classroom, as scheduled on the Indiana University campuses where the degrees are offered. Starred (*) courses are currently available through correspondence. Courses marked with a double star (**) are under development for correspondence. The abbreviation "P" refers to the course prerequisite(s), and "C" refers to the course corequisite(s).

The basic separation in the course list is between core courses (all 100- and 200-level courses, except L199, L290, and L299) and advanced courses (300-400 level).

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Core Courses

L100 Survey of Unions and Collective Bargaining (3 cr.)* A survey of labor unions in the United States, focusing on their organization and their representational, economic, and political activities. Includes coverage of historical development, labor law basics, and contemporary issues.
L101 American Labor History (3 cr.)* A survey of the origin and development of unions and the labor movement from colonial times to the present. The struggle of working people to achieve a measure of dignity and security is examined from social, economic, and political perspectives.
L105 Contemporary Labor Problems (3 cr.)* An examination of some of the major problems confronting society, workers, and the labor movement. Topics may include automation, unemployment, international trade, and conglomerates; environmental problems; minority and women's rights; community relations; changing government policies.
L110 Labor and Society (3 cr.) An introduction to the changing role of labor in society. The course will emphasize a comparative approach to issues confronting labor organizations.
L200 Survey of Employment Law (3 cr.) Statutes and common-law actions protecting income, working conditions, and rights of workers. Topics include workers' compensation, unemployment compensation, fair labor standards, Social Security, retirement income protection, and privacy and other rights.
L201 Labor Law (3 cr.)* A survey of the law governing labor-management relations. Topics include the legal framework of collective bargaining, problems in the administration and enforcement of agreements, and protection of individual employee rights.
L203 Labor and the Political System (3 cr.)* Federal, state, and local governmental effects on workers, unions, and labor-management relations; political goals; influences on union choices of strategies and modes of political participation, past and present; relationships with community and other groups.
L210 Workplace Discrimination and Fair Employment (3 cr.) Examines policies and practices that contribute to workplace discrimination and those designed to eliminate it. Explores effects of job discrimination and occupational segregation. Analyzes Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and related topics in relation to broader strategies for addressing discrimination.
L220 Grievance Representation (3 cr.)* Union representation in the workplace. The use of grievance procedures to address problems and administer the collective bargaining agreement. Identification, research, presentation, and writing of grievance cases. Analysis of relevant labor law and the logic applied by arbitrators to grievance decisions.
L230 Labor and the Economy (3 cr.)* Analysis of the political economy of labor and the role of organized labor within it. Emphasis on the effect on workers, unions, and collective bargaining of unemployment, investment policy, and changes in technology and corporate structure. Patterns of union political and bargaining responses.
L240 Occupational Health and Safety (3 cr.)* Elements and issues of occupational health and safety. Emphasis is on the union's role in the implementation of workplace health and safety programs, worker and union rights, hazard recognition techniques, and negotiated and statutory remedies-in particular the OSHA Act of 1970.
L250 Collective Bargaining (3 cr.)* The development and organization of collective bargaining in the United States, including union preparation for negotiations; bargaining patterns and practices; strategy and tactics; economic and legal considerations.
L251 Collective Bargaining Laboratory (1-3 cr.) P or C: L250. Provides collective bargaining simulations and other participatory experiences in conjunction with L250.
L255 Unions in State and Local Government (3 cr.) Union organization and representation of state and municipal government employees, including patterns in union structure, collective bargaining, grievance representation, and applicable law.
L260 Leadership and Representation (3 cr.) Organizational leadership issues for union, community, and other advocate organizations. Analyzes leadership styles, membership recruitment, and leadership development. Examines the role of leaders in internal governance and external affairs, including committee building, delegation, negotiations, and coalition building.
L270 Union Government and Organization (3 cr.) An analysis of the growth, composition, structure, behavior, and governmental processes of U.S. labor organizations, from the local to the national federation level. Consideration is given to the influence on unions of industrial and political environments; to organizational behavior in different types of unions; and to problems in union democracy.
L280 Union Organizing (3 cr.) Explores various approaches and problems in private- and public-sector organizing. Traditional approaches are evaluated in light of structural changes in labor markets and workforce demographics. Topics range from targeting and assessments to committee building and leadership development.
L285 Assessment Project (1 cr.) Capstone experience for associate degree students.

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Other Courses

L199 Portfolio Development Workshop (1 cr.) Emphasis on developing learning portfolios as foundation documents for academic self-assessment and planning and as applications for self-acquired competency (SAC) credit. Applies only as elective credit to labor studies degrees.
L290 Topics in Labor Studies (1-3 cr.)* A variable title course, L290 can be repeated for credit with different subjects. The transcript will show a different subtitle each time the course is taken. Some courses focus on contemporary or special areas of labor studies. Others are directed toward specific categories of employees and labor organizations. Inquire at Division of Labor Studies offices.
L299 Self-Acquired Competency in Labor Studies (1-15 cr.) See page 6 of this bulletin for a description of Self-Acquired Competency.

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Advanced Courses

L315 The Organization of Work (3 cr.) Examines how work is organized and how jobs are evaluated, measured, and controlled. Explores social and technical elements of work through theories of scientific management, the human relations school of management, and contemporary labor process literature.
L320 Grievance Arbitration (3 cr.)* (Recommended only after L220 or with permission of instructor.) The legal and practical context of grievance arbitration, and its limitations and advantages in resolving workplace problems. Varieties of arbitration clauses and the status of awards. Participants analyze, research, prepare, and present cases in mock arbitration hearings.
L350 Issues in Collective Bargaining (3 cr.) Readings and discussion of selected problems. Research paper usually required.
L360 Union Administration and Development (1-3 cr.) Practical and theoretical perspectives on strategic planning, budgeting, and organizational decision making. Addresses the needs and problems of union leaders by studying organizational change, staff development, and cohesiveness within a diverse workforce. May be repeated for up to 3 credits with department approval.
L375 Comparative Labor Movements (3 cr.)* Labor movements and labor relations in industrial societies from historical, analytical, and comparative perspectives. Emphasis on interaction between unions and political organizations, national labor policies, the resolution of workplace problems, the organization of white collar employees, and the issues of worker control and codetermination.
L380 Theories of the Labor Movement (3 cr.)* Perspectives on the origin, development, and goals of organized labor. Theories include those that view the labor movement as a business union institution, an agent for social reform, a revolutionary force, a psychological reaction to industrialization, a moral force, and an unnecessary intrusion.
L385 Class, Race, Gender, and Work (3 cr.) Historical overview of the impact and interplay of class, race, and gender on shaping U.S. labor markets, organizations, and policies. Examines union responses and strategies for addressing class, race, and gender issues.
L390 Topics in Labor Studies (1-3 cr.)* A variable title course, L390 can be repeated for credit with different subjects. The transcript will show a different subtitle each time the course is taken. Some courses focus on contemporary or special areas of labor studies. Others are directed toward specific categories of employees and labor organizations. Inquire at Division of Labor Studies offices.
L420 Labor Studies Internship (1-6 cr.)* Application of knowledge gained in the classroom in fieldwork experience.
L430 Labor Research Methods (3 cr.) Study of research design, methods, techniques, and procedures applicable to research problems in labor studies.
L480 Senior Seminar or Readings (3 cr.)* Designed as either a classroom seminar or directed reading course. Addresses current issues, historical developments, and other labor-related concerns. Topics may vary each semester.
L495 Directed Labor Study (1-6 cr.)* A variable credit course, L495 may be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit hours. Students arrange to study with an individual labor studies faculty member, designing a course of study to suit their individual and varied needs and interests. The contract might include reading, directed application of prior course work, tutorials, or internships. Competencies are assessed through written papers, projects, reports, or interviews.
L499 Self-Acquired Competency in Labor Studies (1-15 cr.) See page 6 of this bulletin for a description of self-acquired competency.

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