Master of Arts in Work and Labor Policy

The Master of Arts in Work and Labor Policy 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 can also incorporate an advanced certificate into their degree program and earn a second credential.

Program Design

The Work and Labor Policy program is a 30-credit hour master’s degree. Students can create an individualized concentration (general) through chosen electives (5) or a concentration in Work and Labor Policy or Workforce Development. The 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

The courses below are required for all concentrations. An additional 15 credit hours in a focus area are also required.

  • LABR 6010 - Work and Labor Studies
  • PPOL 6007 - Policy Process (previously LABR 6005)
  • LABR 6015 - Labor Policy in America
  • PPOL 6020 - Research Methods 
  • LABR 7010 - Final Project

Elective Courses and Final Project

Depending on the concentration area, students may choose 1 or 5 electives to reflect their interests and to reinforce the individual focus of their degree. For the general concentration, students are encouraged to use the electives to build a concentration around their final project topic. Many students choose to incorporate one of the advanced certificates into their master’s degree as their focus area.

The final project focuses on a topic of your interest that draws upon your prior course work and allows for a meaningful contribution to your field of study and/or practice. This is done through a professional project in the form of a policy memorandum.

For more information about this program and its course sequencing and descriptions, visit the Empire State University's Academic Catalog.