IDRL 215 (Introduction to Labour Relations) is a three-credit applied studies (business and administrative) course that is an introduction to the economic, legal, political, and social aspects of union-management relations, and serves as a foundation for other IDRL courses. Specifically, IDRL 215 looks at contemporary issues in labour relations and examines union organization and structure, labour legislation, and how collective agreements are negotiated and administered.
Students should note that IDRL 311, IDRL 312 are precluded courses. IDRL 215 may not be taken for credit if credit has already been obtained for IDRL 311 or IDRL 312. There are no prerequisites for this course and there is a challenge for credit option if that is of interest.
Introduction to Labour Relations is made up of four units, fifteen lessons, five assignments, and a final exam. The first assignment, weighing five percent, is a short reflection between three to five hundred words. The second assignment, weighing fifteen percent, is four responses to videos and will require three to four hundred words for each question. The third assignment, weighing ten percent, is a quiz containing twenty-five multiple choice questions and fifteen true or false questions. Assignment four, weighing thirty percent, is a case study requiring ten answers of two to three hundred words each. The fifth assignment, weighing five percent, is another short reflection of three to five hundred words.
The final exam, weighing thirty-five percent, consists of two parts. Part one consists of eight short-answer questions (short answer means two or three paragraphs). Students will be required to answer only five of these. Each answer is worth ten percent of the overall mark, for a total value of fifty percent of the final exam. Part two consists of three descriptive-answer essay questions (descriptive-answer essay means an analytical essay of five to seven hundred words). Students are required to answer only two of these. Each answer is worth twenty-five percent of the overall mark, for a total of fifty percent of the final exam.
Throughout this course students will learn the history of the Canadian labour movement, unions in theory and practice, bargaining, conflict resolution, the role of the state, organizing, certification, the public sector labour relations, globalization, and so much more! To pass IDRL 215 students must pass the final examination and achieve an overall course grade of at least fifty percent.
Lois Hameister has been with a tutor for Athabasca University for over 25 years. She has a B. Ed with a major in English, a B.A in Canadian History and an MBA from the University of Alberta. She states, “I have raised a family in the Edmonton area and we love to camp at Buffalo Lake and do some travel that includes activities such as hiking and biking. I am an avid basketball player and soccer player.”
She continues, “I am filling in as the course coordinator for Jason Foster who is on a secondment so have only been in this position for six months. I tutor HRMT 386 (Introduction to Human Resource Management) and IDRL 308 (Occupational Health and Safety).
Lois Hameister states, “IDRL 215 is designed for people working in unionized or non-unionized workplaces, in the public or private sector, and in managerial or non-managerial environments. The course fosters critical thinking by examining the connection between personal experience and wider social forces, or between private troubles and public issues. It holds up a mirror that lets us reflect on the causes and consequences of our actions at work and helps us develop our own implicit analysis of workplace labour relations.”
She concludes, “To be successful in any Athabasca University course, students need to be committed to spending time each week on the course. It is important to set up a schedule for study and set timelines. Waiting until the last month to complete all the assignments and exam does not set up a student for success and creates a lot of stress on the student and the tutor. I would advise students to contact the tutor early on. Introduce yourself and ask questions about the course and what it takes to be successful. Keep in touch with the tutor and ask for advice on assignments.”
Whether IDRL 215 is a degree requirement of yours or if the topics above are of interest to you, this course will have you learning economic, legal, political, and social aspects of union-management relations!