In conflict management programs, students develop the negotiation, dispute resolution, and communication techniques used in conflict management careers. Conflict management programs also provide students with an understanding of human dynamics, conflict policies, and communication within groups. Internships or research projects may be included in the curriculum.
There are three levels of education available in this field: Undergraduate certificates, master's degrees, and graduate certificates. An associate's degree or high school diploma is typically required for the undergraduate level. A master's program requires a bachelor's degree with college credit in mathematics, social sciences, and English. The graduate certificate only requires a master's degree. Program lengths vary for undergraduate programs, with a two year master's degree being the average and a year or less for the graduate certificate.
Undergraduate Certificates in Conflict Management
An undergraduate certificate program in conflict management typically has an interdisciplinary focus and incorporates psychology, business, human resources, management, and sociology. Students develop the negotiation, dispute resolution, and communication techniques used in conflict management careers. An undergraduate certificate may be earned concurrently with an associate's or bachelor's degree in a number of fields, including, criminal justice, women's studies, education, or political science.
Students complete organizational behavior, communication, conflict, and group dynamic studies courses, as well as:
- Cross-cultural psychology and conflict management
- Group methods and team effectiveness
- Problem solving for management
Master's Degrees in Conflict Management
A Master of Science in Conflict Management (MSCM) program typically focuses on research methodology, application, and theory aspects of the field. Some MSCM programs offer a thesis option, where students can complete research in a specialty area of conflict management.
MSCM programs include courses in a number of conflict management areas, including the following:
- Dispute resolutions
- Organizational conflict management
- Executive coaching
- Conflict management clinical experience
Graduate Certificates in Conflict Management
Graduate certificate in conflict management programs are typically designed for professionals pursuing career advancement. The program trains students in areas such as advanced conflict resolution, interpersonal communication, and crisis intervention.
Students can gain a career education through courses in development, leadership, and the following:
- Advanced alternative dispute resolution skill-building
- Social changes
- Crisis management
- Facilitating group conflict
Popular Career Options
The practical skills developing in an undergraduate certificate in conflict management program can be applied to a number of entry-level positions.
- Store team leader
- Conflict prevention worker
- Team building facilitator
Graduate certificates can lead to careers in conflict management and related fields, such as the following:
- Crisis negotiator
- Alternative Dispute Resolution Coordinator
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Graduates of an MSCM program can utilize their mediation, assessment, and negotiation skills in careers in the legal field. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), judicial positions, such as arbitrators, conciliators, and mediators, will have 9% job growth from 2014 through 2024. The BLS notes that the median annual salary for these careers was $58,020 in May 2015.
Conflict management education teaches students about dealing with people's differences and helping to resolve them in a peaceful and optimal way. At the undergraduate certificate, graduate certificate, and master's degree levels, students have several job options.