Why This Matters

  • PREPARE YOURSELF FOR MULTIPLE CAREER PATHS

    Negotiation and conflict management skills are useful in a wide array of industries. A master’s degree can lead to job opportunities in security/intelligence, government, education, research and more.

  • 706,900 NEW MANAGEMENT JOBS ARE EXPECTED

    Being a good manager means negotiating and resolving conflicts successfully. Management positions will increase at a faster-than-average pace during the next decade, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

  • MEDIATION AND ARBITRATION JOBS RISING 8%

    As more companies and individuals turn to alternative dispute resolution methods instead of litigation, job opportunities for mediators and arbitrators are increasing at a faster-than-average pace.

Our Research

For this list, we concentrated on graduate-level programs in negotiation and conflict management. There are a few different types of degrees students can earn in this subject, including a Master of Arts (MA), Master of Science (MS), and Master of Legal Studies (MLS).

We narrowed our search to programs that can be completed entirely or primarily through distance learning courses, to ensure accessibility for the greatest number of students, regardless of their schedule or geographic location.

This list consists entirely of schools that are regionally accredited, which means they meet high standards of quality for postsecondary education. Some programs are also accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE).

We evaluated each program based on reputation, outcomes, flexibility, faculty, and cost. Then we calculated an Intelligent Score on a scale of 0 to 100 for each program. Our top picks for the best online master’s in negotiation and conflict management programs are affordable, flexible, and highly regarded. (For a more extensive explanation, check out Our Ranking Methodology.)

  • 58 hours to write this article
  • 147 universities and colleges we assessed
  • 317 education programs we compared

The Top 20 Online Master’s in Negotiation and Conflict Management Programs

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What You Should Know About This Degree

A master’s in negotiation and conflict management is a skills-based program that gives graduates tools that they can use in a variety of different careers, rather than providing training for a specific job. If you are considering a master’s in negotiation and conflict management, you should be clear on your career goals, and how this degree will help you achieve them. You may need to demonstrate to potential employers how this degree is applicable to the particular job you are seeking.

Because a master’s in negotiation and conflict management teaches you how to interact with people in a way that avoids or resolves conflict, many programs have an experiential learning component. These learning experiences will give you a hands-on opportunity to use your negotiation and conflict management skills, and can include on-campus residencies, internships, or service-learning experiences. Review the program’s curriculum before applying so you can confirm if you will be required to fulfill in-person components, and make the necessary arrangements to accommodate them in your schedule.

If you are interested in pursuing a career as a legal mediator, arbitrator or conciliator, you may have to obtain a state-issued certification to work on certain cases. This usually involves completing a certain amount of training hours set by the state, which may or may not be fulfilled by your master’s program.

What’s Next?

When researching online master’s in negotiation and conflict management programs, you can ask the following questions:

  • Are GMAT or GRE scores required? Many business-oriented master’s programs require standardized test scores, like the GMAT or GRE, as part of the application process. If you need to take these exams, you should make arrangements to do so as soon as possible, as it can take several weeks to process your scores.
  • How are classes delivered? Online classes are usually delivered in one of two ways. Asynchronous classes do not have set meeting times. Instead, students can access their lessons and assignments at any time. Synchronous classes meet remotely at pre-scheduled times throughout the term. Determine which type of delivery format works best for you before selecting a program.

At this time, you should also begin gathering your application materials, and confirming application submission deadlines and procedures. This will help your admissions process go smoothly.

Financing your graduate degree is another important consideration. Explore your options for student loans, private and institutional scholarships, assistantships, and employer tuition benefits, if you are currently working.