Labor and Employment Relations

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LER 100 - Employment Relations

This course introduces students to the process of employment relations in the United States and to the institutions that participate in this process. Since almost all students in this class will, or have already entered into an employment relationship, this course endeavors to prepare the student for greater understanding of this relationship.

LER 136 - Race, Gender, and Employment

This course will focus on providing you a comprehensive understanding of the “how” and “why” of employment inequalities in order to better assess potential solutions. The content of this course touches on theories of employment stratification, empirical studies of inequality, labor legislation, worker organizations, and current events to begin to develop a picture of work inequality, as it exists today and where it may be going in the future.

LER 201 - Employment Relationship:  Law and Policy

This course is an exploration of the legal regulation of the employment relationship in the United States. The course will examine the source of employment law, the policies behind the development of the law, and the systems that may be used by employees and employers to resolve employment law disputes. The course will contain only a limited discussion of collective bargaining, as that subject is presented in more detail in other courses.

LER 312 - Research Methods in Labor Studies and Employment Relations

In this course, students will develop a better understanding of how to ask interesting questions about human behavior, and learn methods for answering those questions.

LER 400 - Comparative Employment Relations

This course explores contemporary topics in labor and employment relations in the world. The course examines several examples of employment relations systems, each carefully chosen to illustrate important variations in employment relation’s practices. It also provides an overview of economic globalization and its impact on employment relations.

LER 401 - The Law of Labor-Management Relations

This course reviews the subject of labor relations in some detail. The course focus is on the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and the National Labor Relations Board that administers the Act. It presents the Board's historical background, the Board administrative structure, the mosaic of Board rules, manuals, and guides, and the relationship of the Board and courts. While it is not a law course, it is an excellent introduction to the legal field.

LER 403 - International Human Resource Studies

This course builds on the foundations of human resource management (HRM) ideas by considering what the HRM concepts actually mean in different countries around the world.

LER 424 - Employment Compensation

This course discusses the factors and laws that affect compensation and reviews what is needed to create a compensation plan that recognizes what works best for the organization based on its corporate culture, mission and vision.

LER 425 - Employee Benefits

This course will provide you with a broad overview of benefits, specifically exploring social insurance (benefits granted through entitlement programs), group benefits (broadly defined as "healthcare benefits," generally offered in the workplace to employees) and retirement plans, or financial protection plans. While the course will be primarily focused on U.S. benefits and benefit laws and regulations, there will be some discussion and comparison with benefits offered in other countries as well. Additionally, the focus of the course will be on the practical application of the concepts.

LER 426 - Staffing and Training Strategies in Organizations

This course explores the end-to-end talent management lifecycle as well as the impact talent has in creating a competitive advantage for an organization. The course provides a broad overview of the talent management lifecycle and explores its relationship to an organization's overall business strategy.

LER 434 - Collective Bargaining and Contract Administration

This course will examine the process of collective bargaining that millions of American employees and employers engage in every year. It will look in detail at the "players” in this process and the government agencies which regulate it. It will also examine the stages of the collective bargaining process, including the organizing of unions, the bargaining of labor agreements, and the resolution of disputes and disagreements. The issues that are the subjects of bargaining will also be identified and discussed, including wages, benefits, working conditions, union security arrangements, and disciplinary processes. The course will conclude with a discussion of some of the newest developments and latest trends in collective bargaining.

LER 435 - Labor Relations in the Public Sector

This course will examine the system of public sector labor relations that has developed in this country since the early 1960s. It will look in detail at the “players” in this process and it will also examine the stages of the labor relations process in this sector, including the organizing of unions, the bargaining of labor agreements, and the resolution of disputes and disagreements. The issues that are the subjects of bargaining will also be identified and discussed, including wages, benefits, working conditions, union-security arrangements, and disciplinary processes.  The course will conclude with a project dealing with a more in-depth analysis of one of the topics covered in the previous weeks.

LER 437 - Workplace Dispute Resolution

This course examines dispute resolution procedures in unionized and nonunion workplaces. The course includes an examination of grievance procedures in unionized workplaces and the system of labor arbitration. The second major theme of the course is an examination of the design and use of nonunion workplace dispute resolution procedures. The course will look at procedures for resolving employment law disputes and the major public policy debates surrounding mandatory nonunion arbitration procedures.

LER 444 - Occupational Health: Policy and Practice

This course will introduce students to the three interrelated fields of occupational safety, occupational health, and environmental protection. Students will be provided with an overview of key issues within these fields and gain an appreciation for their importance within the workplace. Students will also become familiar with the fundamental concepts involved in the management of occupational safety and health hazards.

LER 458Y - History of Work in America

This course studies selected problems in the history of work in the United States and addresses economic, technological, social, cultural, and political aspects of employment and self-employment. Major topics of concern includes methods of producing goods and services, work time, working conditions, the composition of the workforce, the changing functions of managers, the role of the state in shaping labor markets and regulating employment relations, the formation and operation of unions and other representative bodies, and the relation of work to the family and other social institutions.

LER 460 - Human Resources Ethics

This course is designed for advanced students of human resources who wish to explore the ethical dimension of HR practices and policies.  Students develop their abilities to articulate their own moral values, to analyze situations using ethical theories, and to advocate for particular HR practices or policies on the basis of ethical considerations.  While no one view of ethics is identified as "best," students learn to recognize, evaluate, and compare approaches. Students also develop their abilities to identify, read, and explain academic literature related to the ethics of human resources management.

LER 464 - Communication Skills for Leaders in Groups and Organizations

This course is a survey of theory, research, and practice related to processes by which individuals in groups and organizations exercise influence, independently of whether or not they occupy positions of acknowledged leadership.

LER 465 - Collective Decision Making

This course presents a broad overview of theories and practices in decision making as related to choice making in organizations. Of particular interest are decision-making practices, as well as theories that account for them, in single-motive situations (in which participants in the process are pursuing a common goal) and mixed-motive situations (in which two or more of the participants are competitively related but must cooperate to achieve their objectives).

LER 472 - Work-Life Practices and Policies

This course will help you develop your capacity for effectively recognizing and responding to the work / life conflicts and ethical dilemmas that are an inevitable part of organizational life. To do so, the course will explore how individual characteristics and contextual pressures impact awareness, judgment, and behavior related to ethical and work / life issues.

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