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Online Masters Degree in Labor Relations

As a labor relations specialist, your wide-ranging roles might include teaching workers how social networking can advance their careers. Your training would likely include cautionary tales about social media blunders like these spotlighted on MSN:

  1. In 2011, the Craigslisting New York congressman Christopher Lee stripped halfway down and flexed his muscles for an e-woman who was not his wife. He resigned from public office.
  2. In 2009, a Connecticut employee got fired for posting expletives about her boss on Facebook and could not sue her way back into her job.
  3. In 2006, a man was fired by IBM for sex-chatting on the clock. His defense of post-traumatic stress disorder fell flat.

Cleaning up these messes takes legal savvy and diplomatic prowess. Fine-tune your workplace wisdom through master's degrees in labor relations. The topics you study might include the legality of prospective employers asking for your social networking passwords.

Earning master's degrees in labor relations

Candidates for these programs need strong interpersonal and organizational abilities, and familiarity with technology can also be important. Advanced degrees cover business fundamentals in labor relations and collective bargaining, as well as the following:

  1. Finance, such as financial analysis or corporate governance
  2. Institutional diversity, such as globalization or labor history
  3. Law, such as employment, labor or public sector law
  4. Research methods, as in HR decision making
  5. Workforce diversity, such as immigration, minorities or women

Many master's degrees in labor relations offer specializations in an area of your choice.

Career outlook in labor relations

Opportunities arise in business, education, government, financial services and non-profit industries, as director of research, HR director, senior consultant or union president. With 1-5 years of experience, you could seek a role as employee relations manager, tasked with negotiating and administering contracts as well as handling complaints and grievances.

The BLS anticipates faster than average job growth of 21 percent for human resources specialists between 2010 and 2020, compared to average growth of 13 percent for HR managers. The BLS reports a 2010 median annual salary of $54,310 for human resources, training and labor relations specialists, whereas human resources managers earned $99,180.

Online degree programs offer a convenient solution to seeking a master's degree. Flexible schedules allow you to keep your current job while you advance your career. But whether you are studying or working, make sure to use social media wisely.

Featured Online Labor Relations Degree Programs

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