Master of Arts in Labor and Policy Studies
The Master of Arts in Labor and Policy Studies is designed for unionists, human-resource professionals, arbitrators, educators, journalists, political activists, lawyers and individuals involved in government or private industry.
Advance your career by strengthening your communication, analytical and leadership skills. The program can help you become more effective in your present position and prepare you for greater responsibilities or new positions that involve labor, industrial relations or human resources.
Students in labor and policy studies may create an emphasis in one of two areas:
- Work, workers and labor organizations
- Public-sector employment relations
Program emphasis is on current problems and policies generated by changes in the global economy, technology, the work force and the workplace. It also provides a background in American labor relations, labor history, labor law and collective bargaining.
Required Courses (all required courses are residency based)
- Labor Emphasis Seminar
- Policy Process
- History of Labor and Policy
- Research Methods
- Current Issues Facing Labor
- Labor Law
- Policy Formations in Unions or
The Sociology of Work: Human Resources
You choose three elective courses (9 credits) to reflect your interests and to reinforce the individual focus of your degree. You are urged to use your electives to build a concentration around your final project topic.
Examples of elective courses include, but are not limited to:
- Theories of the Labor Movement
- Occupational Health and Safety in the Modern Workplace
- Labor and International Economy
- Environment, Labor and the Community
- Women Working in a Global Context
- Citizen and State: Contemporary American Politics
- Collective Bargaining in the Public Sector
- New York State Government and Politics
This course is the culmination of your program and reinforces the unique focus of your degree. The project may be a thesis, a position paper, a case study, a collection of related papers or a practicum. Completion of the final project requires an oral defense and final approval by the dean.
Explore this website for more details or submit a request for information.
Program Coordinator: Jason Russell, PhD, Jason.Russell@esc.edu
The labor and policy studies program appeals to graduate students employed by unions, business, government and schools, and students active in labor and politics. It is designed to make you more effective in your present position and to prepare you for greater responsibilities or new positions that deal with matters of importance to labor, industrial relations or human resources.
While the program provides you with a background in American labor relations, labor history, labor law and collective bargaining, the concentration is on current problems and policies generated by changes in the global economy, technology, the work force and the workplace.
The program also aims to enhance your professional competence and career opportunities by strengthening your communication, analytical and leadership skills. It encourages you to use your elective courses, Modes of Inquiry, and a final project to develop an area of specialty. Faculty will help you design your own courses, pursue individual research projects, and develop practicums and internships.
You also have the option to pursue emphasis areas: Work, Workers and Labor Organizations or Public Sector Employment Relations.
All matriculated students first enroll at the fall or spring residency. All new matriculated students must take the first two required courses, Labor Emphasis Seminar and Policy Process, which start only in the fall and the spring terms.
For information about the human resource emphasis area in the labor program:
Apply for Admission
To apply for the M.A. in Labor and Policy Studies, review the admissions requirements and submit an online application.