What Can I Expect from an Online Master’s in Negotiation and Conflict Management Program

In an online negotiation and conflict management program, you should find advanced courses that will allow you to pursue a position in this growing field. Coursework is just as rigorous as what you see in an on-campus program, with experienced professors and the chance to network with peers.

Negotiation is an ideal career path for those who like to settle differences. In management, this means finding ways to compromise and agree while avoiding arguments and disputes. Individuals should possess skills in persuasion, analysis, and interpersonal relationships. An online master’s in negotiation and conflict management can help you advance in your career in conflict management while working and managing a personal life. When choosing a program, it’s essential to seek one that suits your goals.

Available concentrations

Within the negotiation and conflict management field, you may find opportunities to specialize in an area that interests you. You can focus on one of the following concentrations while enrolled in your online program.

  • Health care: Focuses on the problems that arise in a health care setting, including between patients and physicians and surgeons and hospitals. Coursework may include information on federal privacy rules regarding health care. Individuals with this concentration can work as compensation and benefits managers, training and development specialists, employee assistance plan managers, or human resources system analysts.
  • Environment: Prepares an individual to face environmental problems that deal with air, water, energy, and waste. Graduates with this specialization may find jobs as ecological project managers, remediation technicians, or remediation engineers.
  • Ombudsmanship: These individuals work to resolve disputes between individuals or organizations. They actively promote peacemaking. Graduates in this field prepare for jobs as conflict resolution officers, tenant ombudsman, public affairs specialists, or compliance directors.

Common degree curriculum

Classes in an online master’s degree in negotiation and conflict management concentrate on the problems that arise in a business and how managers can address and resolve these issues. Additional coursework varies depending on the concentration. Consider some of the courses you might encounter when completing your degree:

  • Intrapersonal Dynamics in Conflict: Explores the different communication styles that affect intrapersonal dynamics.
  • Conflict and Cooperation: Defines the social cooperation process when individuals work together.
  • Advanced Mediation: Focuses on helping two or more individuals or organizations find common ground.
  • Workplace Conflict: Equips students to identify the most common conflicts that occur in a workplace and the strategies employed to resolve those issues.
  • Negotiations: Teaches students how to identify the key components of effective negotiation.

Certification and license preparation

There are several possible certifications a person in the field of negotiation and conflict management may receive. These may help make them a more attractive candidate for professional positions.

  • Court-Certified Mediator Certification: This requires 20 to 40 hours of approved mediation training; there may also be specific state requirements.
  • Harvard Negotiation Institute: This certification requires a five-day course focusing on negotiation and mediation.
  • Family Financial Settlement Certification: This certification for residents of North Carolina requires applicants to complete a 40-hour approved course, observe two mediations conducted by a certified family financial mediator or an NCAOC custody mediator, and demonstrate a basic understanding of family law.

Program accreditation

When searching for an online master’s in negotiation and conflict management program, it’s essential to look at the type of accreditation status. Accreditation can affect your ability to get federal aid and determine the value of your degree. Regional accreditation is the most valuable. It ensures the college and program meet rigorous industry standards. National accreditation is given to two-year colleges, faith-based organizations, and trade schools. Students can confirm their school’s accreditation through the Council of Higher Education Accreditation.

Program completion timeframe

The online master’s in negotiation and conflict management requires approximately 36 hours of coursework, which takes 16 to 24 months to complete when taking classes full-time. Taking classes part-time can extend the program for up to five years. Most colleges and universities offer cohort learning, in which students move through the program and graduate together as a group. This program structure can extend the time for program completion. Self-paced programs let students take as many or as few classes at once as they wish, often making it possible to complete the program early.

Employment Outlook for Master’s in Negotiation and Conflict Management Graduates

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs that require master’s degrees will grow by around 17 percent from 2016 to 2026. This is because jobs that once required a bachelor’s degree may now require a master’s degree due to the competition for positions.

In addition to an increase in the number of master’s degrees needed, the average salary for those with a master’s degree is around $12,000 more per year than those with a bachelor’s degree. Salary depends on the industry and the number of years of experience of the individual.

Individuals who seek an online master’s in negotiation and conflict management can pursue a career in a variety of different industries, from legal to health care. Those with a master’s degree may increase the likelihood of advancement.

Job Title Job Description Median Yearly Salary Projected Growth Rate
Arbitrator Arbitrators negotiate issues that arise between two parties by helping them come to an acceptable agreement. They may interview claimants and conduct arbitration meetings. $64,030 per year 5%
Community Service Manager Community service managers supervise social service programs and community organizations and help provide social services to the public. $74,240 per year 9%
Political Scientist Political scientists study the origin and operation of political systems. They also research political ideals and related issues. $128,020 per year 7%
Corporate Dispute Arbitrators Corporate dispute arbitrators help resolve conflicts in a corporate setting. These individuals serve as neutral third parties to help organizations settle disputes. $72,475 per year 9%
Paralegal Paralegals assist lawyers in preparing cases for trial, gathering needed information, filing papers, drafting documents, and scheduling appointments. $59,200 per year 4%

Professional organizations

Professional organizations support those with an online master’s in negotiation and conflict management. They connect individuals with other professionals in the industry for advice, job leads, and continuing education.

  • Association for Conflict Resolution: The Association for Conflict Resolution provides its members with a referral list, continuing education, and various publications. The group also holds an annual conference for its local sections and chapters.
  • National Association for Community Mediation: The NACM helps advance members’ careers as mediators. The association has an active blog, offers continuing education opportunities, and hosts yearly events.
  • American Arbitration Association: The AAA connects professionals with companies and individuals seeking arbitration. The group also offers its members a host of resources.

Financing Your Online Master’s in Negotiation and Conflict Management Degree

Online degrees typically cost less than traditional on-campus degree programs. However, students may still need financial assistance to pay for college courses. Start by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to find scholarships, loans, and grants available through the federal government. If additional assistance is needed, various public and private resources are available.

Student Finance Resources and Guides

When you are pulling together your financial aid package, you will likely have questions. The following resources can help answer them and guide you in determining the best way to meet your financial needs.

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