MAE304 - Labour and Health Economics


2024 unit information

Enrolment modes: Trimester 2: Burwood (Melbourne), Online
Credit point(s): 1
EFTSL value: 0.125


Corequisite: Nil
Incompatible with: Nil
Study commitment

Students will on average spend 150 hours over the trimester undertaking the teaching, learning and assessment activities for this unit.

This will include educator guided online learning activities within the unit site.

Scheduled learning activities - campus

1 x 2 hour on-campus lecture  (recordings provided) and 1 x 1 hour on-campus seminar (recordings provided) each week.

Scheduled learning activities - online

1 x 2 hour recorded lecture each week and 1 x 1 hour online seminar in weeks 4, 7 and 10.


This unit focuses on the application of microeconomic theories and analytical tools to understand the economics of labour and health, two key interrelated aspects of human resources. For labour economics, we investigate the labour force as an element of production process. Firstly, we examine the supply of labour where we consider factors that determine whether a particular person works and, if so, how many hours she chooses to work.  Next, we will investigate the demand for labour, where we focus on the interplay between the production function by business firms and the level of wages in the economy. Subsequently, we put the labour supply and demand together to illustrate the determination of equilibrium wages. Using the labour supply-demand model, we can investigate the impact of immigration flows or the shocks to immigration flows (resulted from Covid-19 pandemics for example) on the wages earned by native workers. Finally, using Becker’s human capital model, we investigate the factors that affect the level of education and training that individuals choose.


For health economics, we first discuss the key features of the health economy, and the use of cost-benefits in evaluating health policies and interventions including Covid-19’s lock-down measures. Next, we examine the factors that influence health, appreciating the fact that healthcare is only one contributing factor. We then explore the production of healthcare, focusing on the substitution between health input factors, health insurance and technology. The Grossman’s demand for health capital model, a model that is related to the Becker’s human capital but emphasises health as a distinct form of human capital, is also investigated. Finally, we analyse the Australia’s health care systems and the statistics related to Australia’s health since the onset of Covid-19 pandemics.  


The unit equips students with methods necessary to analyse emerging policy issues related to labour markets and the health economies, which are crucial for their future career.

Hurdle requirement

Hurdle requirement: Achieve at least 50% of the marks available on the end-of-unit assessment task to evidence a minimum proficiency in the aligned discipline learning outcomes included in this unit.

Unit Fee Information

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