Certificate in Policy Issues on Work and Pay

Work and pay

The Policy Issues on Work and Pay Certificate provides professionals in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors with insight and ability to better understand and evaluate federal, state, and local policies that affect the employment relationship.

What You Will Learn

  • How to review and evaluate various statutes
  • How employers, unions, and governments interpret those policies
  • How policy affects the working conditions of employees

Certificates Toward Degree Programs

You can complete both a degree and certificate program with the Humphrey School as well as the Center for Human Resources and Labor Studies at the Carlson School of Management. You must apply prior to completing all the classes in the Policy Issues on Work and Pay Certificate.


The Policy Issues on Work and Pay Certificate requires 15 semester credits, including 5 credits in core courses, and a minimum of 10 credits in electives.

Required Core Courses (5 credits)

  • PA 5431 Public Policies on Work and Pay (3 cr.)
    OR HRIR 5061 Public Policies on Work and Pay (3 cr.)
  • HRIR 5054 Public Policy on Employee Benefits (2 cr.)
    OR PA 5022 Microeconomics for Policy Analysis (3 cr.)

Note: All core courses must be taken for a letter grade.

Elective Courses (A minimum 10 credits)

Choose any three to five courses:

  • HRIR 5000 Topics in Human Resources and Industrial Relations (2 cr.) Topic of section must cover public policies
  • HRIR 5022 Managing Diversity (2 cr.)
  • HRIR 5023 Employment Labor Law for the HRIR Professional (2 cr.)
  • HRIR 5025 Comparative and International Human Resources and Industrial Relations (2 cr.)
  • HRIR 8071 Labor Relations and Collective Bargaining (4 cr.)
  • PA 5401 Poverty, Inequality, and Public Policy (3 cr.)
  • PA 8390 Research Methods in Public Policy (2 cr.)
  • HIST 5844 U.S. Labor History (3 cr.)
  • LAW 6203 Labor Law (3 cr.)
  • LAW 6631  Employee Discrimination (3 cr.) 
  • LAW 6625 Disability Law (3 cr.)
  • LAW 6632 Employment law (3 cr.)
  • LAW 6833 Alternative Dispute Resolution (2 cr.)
  • APEC 5511 Labor Economics (3 cr.)
  • SOC 8421 Work and Occupations (3 cr.)