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Labor Studies

Department of Labor Studies

All of us work for a living, or will for much of our lives. The kind of work we do, and what our parents did for work determines such variables in our lives as the schools we go to, the neighborhoods we live in, and the opportunities available to us in our lives, and indeed, in our children's lives.

Labor Studies uses interdisciplinary social science perspectives combined with practical skills training to educate workers and future workers and their organizations, on such issues as the role of work in contemporary society, the development of trade unionism, changing relationships between family and work, workers rights on the job, the ways that racial and gender inequality impact on the kinds of work people do, and issues of health and safety at work, among other issues. Labor Studies views working people and their efforts to achieve justice and equity as central to the development of our nation, and, indeed all countries. We look to encourage union organizing, and seek to help existing trade unions confront the challenges of the changing economy.

Labor Studies at IUSB

IUSB students may major or minor in Labor Studies, as in any other department and we offer a Certificate in Labor Studies. Specific course requirements are available in our Bulletin. Workers can receive certain college credits for the education they have received through union apprenticeship and other training programs, as well as be evaluated for learning gained through union activity and leadership.

What can I do with a Labor Studies Major or Minor?

As a discipline, labor studies deals with work, the workplace, and workers and their organizations. As a program, labor studies enables participants to serve more effectively as members and leaders in their organizations. Participants can also gain a sense of the past and present contexts of work and unionism.

Through the Division of Labor Studies, Indiana University offers a - -

  • Certificate in Labor Studies - 30 credit hours
  • Associate of Science in Labor Studies - 60 credit hours
  • Bachelor of Science in Labor Studies - 120 credit hours
  • Minor in Labor Studies - 15 credit hours

In the Department Labor Studies you will learn skills that you can apply to your day-to-day activities at your workplace, in your union and in the community. You can gain a better understanding of where you and the labor movement fit into the big picture: the economy, the political arena, and society as a whole.

A degree in Labor Studies gives you more than just union and work-based education. The curriculum includes writing courses, computer courses, economics and history. An associate or bachelor of science degree in Labor Studies represents a high level of academic accomplishment in critical thinking, reading and analysis. These are skills which enable you to learn new jobs, take on new responsibilities and adjust to a changing job market.

Some of the Alumni from Indiana University South Bend's Department of Labor Studies are currently holding such positions as: Community Organizer, Director of Organizing for Large Union, Human Resources Manager, IOSHA Inspector, Job Corp Counselor, Job Retention Non-Profit Organization, Labor Agency Director, Labor in the Schools Program Coordinator, Labor Journalist, Lawyer, Manufacturing Supervisor, Special Assistant to Governor, Union Labor Educator, Union Officer, Union Organizer, Union Organizing Director, University Labor Educator, and Union Staff Representative.

Labor Studies at Indiana University

Labor Studies at Indiana University Northwest (Gary)