Best Online Master's Degrees in Conflict Resolution
People with specialized training in conflict resolution help mediate and ease communication between disputing parties. Graduates of online conflict resolution degree programs are well suited for a variety of professional roles. Depending on their education level and work experience, they may provide counseling, lead anger management and communications classes, or help people develop child custody plans or settle property disputes. Students in this field study communication techniques, legal statutes, psychology, sociology, and leadership principles.
The accreditation of any degree program you are considering should be a top priority. Accreditation helps ensure that schools provide a worthwhile education for their students and meet established academic standards. The US Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation each offer a database of current accredited schools and degree programs. Read More
Most Popular Accredited Online Schools for Conflict Resolution Master's Degrees
|Rank||School||Annual Tuition||Recommend Rate|
|# 1||Creighton University||$17,898||75% (4 reviews)|
|# 2||Walden University||Not Provided||51% (695 reviews)|
|# 3||Regent University Online||$16,952||35% (26 reviews)|
|# 4||Chicago School of Professional Psychology Online||$22,411||24% (17 reviews)|
|# 5||Bay Path University||$14,670||100% (1 review)|
|# 6||Brenau University||$13,254||Add Review|
|# 7||American University||$31,113||100% (3 reviews)|
|# 8||Abilene Christian University||$22,356||100% (1 review)|
|# 9||American Public University System||$7,005||69% (188 reviews)|
|# 10||Biola University||$11,394||Add Review|
|# 11||California Southern University||Not Provided||67% (69 reviews)|
|# 12||California State University - Dominguez Hills||$17,884||100% (1 review)|
|# 13||Dominican University||$20,884||Add Review|
|# 14||Golden Gate University||$19,705||100% (1 review)|
|# 15||Lasell College||$10,960||Add Review|
|# 16||Maharishi International University||$28,530||Add Review|
|# 17||Minnesota State University at Mankato||$8,474||0% (2 reviews)|
|# 18||Norwich University||$19,554||74% (19 reviews)|
|# 19||Nova Southeastern University||$21,206||63% (8 reviews)|
|# 20||Oregon State University||$26,844||57% (7 reviews)|
|# 21||PennWest California||$18,508||75% (16 reviews)|
|# 22||Pepperdine University||$35,020||0% (2 reviews)|
|# 23||Touro University Worldwide||$9,000||53% (19 reviews)|
|# 24||University of Maine||$27,635||Add Review|
|# 25||University of Missouri||$26,577||Add Review|
What Is a Conflict Resolution Degree?
A master’s degree in conflict resolution provides students with the skills to forge relationships between individuals, communities, organizations, and nations, with an eye toward improving communications and reducing conflict. Students who obtain a graduate degree in conflict resolution may go on to pursue careers as mediators, human resources directors, counselors, consultants, and more.
Master’s degrees in conflict resolution typically take about two years to complete. Applicants should have obtained a bachelor’s degree prior to applying. In some cases, schools may require that applicants complete entrance exams at the graduate level, like the GRE.
Can You Get a Conflict Resolution Degree Online?
Yes, it’s possible to obtain a graduate degree in conflict resolution online. Online degrees provide freedom and flexibility for graduate students, allowing them to complete degrees while also balancing other work and family responsibilities.
Financial Aid for Online Master's Students
In some cases, students may be able to obtain financial aid when applying for an online master’s degree. Some schools may offer need-based or merit-based scholarships and aid, which can help make graduate studies more affordable for qualifying students.
Students may also qualify for student loans to help cover the cost of tuition and living expenses. Those interested in applying for financial aid should be sure to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and submit all necessary paperwork and documents as early as possible.
Online degrees in conflict resolution provide students with the skills they need to effectively manage conflicts and negotiate solutions. From interpersonal conflicts to community-wide conflicts, the study of conflict resolution helps students learn how to mediate between different groups.
Courses in conflict management draw from fields including psychology, sociology, history, and law. Check out some of the most common core classes for conflict management students at the graduate level:
What Jobs Can You Get With a Master's in Conflict Resolution?
There are a wide variety of career paths available to students with a graduate degree in conflict resolution. Graduates may choose to focus on interpersonal conflict between individuals, conflict at a community-wide level, or even conflict at a national level.
Some common occupations include human resources managers, counselors, mediators, arbitrators, and more. See below for more details, including salary information and job growth from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS):
Arbitrators, mediators, and conciliators specialize in resolving conflicts between disputing parties. Often, mediators help individuals resolve conflicts before they escalate to a legal setting. Mediators may work for private companies or for state or government agencies.
Human Resources Manager
Human resources managers are in charge of mediating conflicts between employees and employers. They may also be in charge of other tasks related to the organization, such as onboarding, managing pay and benefits, resolving disputes between coworkers, and more. Many human resources managers have a master’s degree, which can make them more competitive on the job market.
For students with a degree in conflict resolution, pursuing a law career is one way to put their skills to use. While some conflicts can be resolved outside of the courtroom by mediators or arbitrators, other conflicts can only be resolved by lawyers in court. Students interested in becoming lawyers typically also need a specialized law degree. Lawyers may work for businesses, individuals, or government agencies.
If you’re pursuing a degree in conflict resolution and interested in negotiating conflicts at the international level, then a career as a political scientist could be a good fit. Political scientists study political systems, both within individual nations as well as on a global scale. They may advise political campaigns, government agencies, or businesses on how to behave.
School and Career Counselor
School and career counselors work in school settings to ensure that students have the support they need to succeed. Some of the tasks school counselors might be responsible for include mediating conflicts between students, assisting students with their educational plans, and helping students to prepare for college and careers. School counselors may be employed by public or private schools.
Judges and hearing officers have the final say when it comes to resolving conflicts and disputes that must be settled in court. In order to become a judge, students must also obtain a law degree and have work experience as lawyers. Judges are employed by local, state, or federal governments to oversee the legal process.
Is a Master's in Conflict Resolution Worth It?
Whether or not a master’s in conflict resolution is worth it depends on your career goals, education background, budget, and more. In many cases, a graduate degree in conflict resolution can help students to pursue careers as mediators, negotiators, counselors, and more. However, a master’s degree isn’t always necessary to pursue employment in these fields. Students with a bachelor’s degree in a related area may want to focus on gaining practical experience through employment rather than earning another degree.
High potential salaries
Important, challenging work
Widely applicable skills
High-stakes and high-stress
There are a variety of professional organizations and groups that conflict resolution students might consider joining in order to further their career:
- Association for Conflict Resolution: An association dedicated to enhancing understanding of conflict resolution.
- The River Phoenix Center for Peacebuilding: This nonprofit offers trainings on the best restorative justice practices and theories for those interested in local grassroots peacebuilding.
- Conflict Resolution Network: This organization provides resources for individuals to learn more about resolving conflicts as well as free online resources and an online certificate course.
- Mediators Beyond Borders International: If you are interested in gaining the necessary skills to prevent, resolve, and negotiate conflicts, this organization can help.
- Center for Nonviolent Communication: The Center for Nonviolent Communication is a nonprofit dedicated to helping people resolve conflicts peacefully in a wide range of settings.
- American Arbitration Association: This nonprofit association aims to help individuals resolve conflicts through alternative means rather than the court system.
An online master’s degree in conflict resolution can be a great fit for students looking to pursue careers as arbitrators, mediators, or negotiators, to name a few opportunities in the field. The skills learned while studying conflict resolution are also broadly applicable to a variety of other areas, and earning a degree can help students communicate and manage conflicts more effectively in general.
While a master’s degree in conflict resolution isn’t always strictly necessary in order to explore related careers, it can be a great way to gain additional knowledge and experience and make your resume stand out.
If you are curious to explore similar online graduate degrees, check out our list of the best online master's in counseling degrees.