ECON 3504 - Labour Economics

North Terrace Campus - Winter - 2019

This course is designed to introduce students to economic models of the labour market, both theoretical and empirical. Illustrations from current policy debates are used. After completing this course, students will be able to describe key features of the labour market, analyse models of the labour market in order to make predictions concerning the impact of public policy recommendations, and evaluate existing data relating to these predictions. Topics include the supply of labour and accumulation of human capital; demand for labour in competitive and non-competitive markets; labour unions; the determination of equilibrium wages; wage discrimination; policies such as minimum wage laws, welfare reform, and trade.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code ECON 3504
    Course Labour Economics
    Coordinating Unit Economics
    Term Winter
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 15 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Assumed Knowledge ECON 2506
    Assessment Case study, tutorial participation, essay and final exam
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Kostas Mavromaras

    Professor Kostas Mavromaras
    Director, Future of Employment and Skills Research Centre
    Level 5, Nexus 10 Tower
    10 Pulteney Street
    Adelaide  SA  5005

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

    Please note that this course is offered in intensive mode (3 weeks) during Winter School.
  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    Upon successful completion of this subject, the studetns will be able to:

    1. Demonstrate a sound understanding of the core concepts and tools of Labour Economics and Policy.

    2. Apply economic principles and reasoning to critically analyse labour market phenomena and contemporary academic literature.

    3. Develop an understanding of the future role work and jobs in evolving social and economic enviroments.

    4. Communicate thier knowledge and understanding of labour market and related social issues using written, verbal and visual expression.

    5. Critically evaluate government policies affecting work and jobs

    6. Interpret labour market statistics and the statistical outputs in academic papers policy reports and broader economic and social commentary.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    The prescribed textbook for this subject is:

    Sloane P., P.L. Latreille, N.O'leary, Modern Labour Economics , 2013, Routledge. ISBN 04 154 69813/9780415469814.

    The lecture slides, practical questions and other information will be available for studetns on Canvas and can be downloaded or printed from there.

    Links to relevant academic papers, reports and other relevant information will be provided to the studetns for them to download or print.

    The lecture nots are not NOT complete- they indicate what is to be covered in the lecture; students are expected to attend the lectures and develop their understanding through writing their own notes.

    NOTE: Dictionaries are not allowed in School of Economics Exams.
    Recommended Resources
    A number of links to additional resources, notably academic papers, will be provided in the course of the subject.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course uses lectures and tutorials. The lectures provide an overview of the course content but students can expect that they will need to study the textbook in order to understand the work. The tutorials will comprise discussions, analysis of academic contributions on a number of topics related to the labour market, discussions on quantitative techniques used in the field of Labour Economics and policy evaluation, introduction to relevant datasets available in Australia and Internationally and the discussion of contemporary policy issues relating to work and jobs. Students will be expected to participate actively in the tutorials and familiarise themselves with the material prior to attending the tutorial.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements. The University expects full-time students (i.e. those taking 12 units per semester) to devote a total of 48 hours per week to their studies. This means that, for this winter course, you are expected to commit approximately 10 hours to private study, that is, study outside of your regular classes.
    Learning Activities Summary
    The learning activities of this course are organised by topics, some topics will require more than one (2 hour) lecture session, other topics will be covered within on lecture session. The lecture session is followed by a one hour tutorial session.
    Tutorials aim to consolidate your understanding of course material by working through relevant labour market issues and to expand your understanding of course material through group discussions. An indicative list of topics to be covered in the lectures/tutorials follows:
    • Labour force participation
    • Labour supply
    • Labour demand
    • Education, skills and training
    • Labour mobility
    • Mismatches in the labour market and the workplace
    • Wage determination and wage incentives
    • Asymmetric information on the labour market
    • Bargaining and trade unions
    • The male-female pay gap
    • Labour market policy
    • Special workforces
    • Automation, robots, and the future work
    • Globailsation, trade and work
    Specific Course Requirements
    To be advised.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment task Due Weighting
    Essay/written assignment Week 2 30%
    Tutorial class participation
    Final written exam Week 4 60%
    Assessment Related Requirements
    No late submissions on the written assignment will be accepted.
    Assessment Detail
    The assessment will consist of 3 components:

    1. An essay/individually written assignement to be completed by the second week of the winter session. (worth 30% of the final mark)

    2. Tutorial participation. Students are expected to actively participate in the tutorial discussions, ask questions and come prepared to class. (Worth 10% of the final mark)

    3. Final exam (worth 60% of the final mark) The final exam will cover the entire course. All material from the lectures, the textbook or the tutorials is examinable.
    To be advised.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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