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Gain a theoretical grounding and practical skills in mediation, a vital tool in resolving disputes in work and personal life.

Specialist skill in mediation is now recognised as a distinct area of expertise increasingly in demand in many sectors of business, law, employment, health and public services.

Benefit from this career advantage in a fast-growing area of professional need and personal gain - as you enjoy the advantages of online distance learning to fit around your location, employment and personal commitments.


Mediation is becoming increasingly popular across the commercial, family, employment, consumer, education, public sector and civil court arenas as well as in many complaints procedures. Its efficiency and potential to reduce costs – particularly those associated with litigation and formal processes – make it widely seen as a cost effective and successful process.

Many of us deal regularly in a professional or informal capacity with people experiencing stress and often anger, whether we are lawyers, human resources professionals, healthcare staff, community workers or in many other roles. Employers or line managers increasingly find that mediation techniques enable them to better handle disagreements among staff, as well as difficult discussions.

This online short course is designed to equip you with theory and practical skills as a mediator, or in referring clients to mediation services. You’ll examine conflict theory and how you personally react to conflict, and grow your own skills with practical techniques to mediate disputes in a professional or personal capacity.

You’ll learn from highly-experienced lawyers at a UK top-ten School of Law, and other practising experts, as you grow your own knowledge, expertise and career options while enjoying the practical advantages of online distance learning.

You can study this credit-bearing, online programme as a standalone course, or use it as a taster for continuing your professional education through progressing to our full LLM in Dispute Resolution, also available online and giving a great boost to your career.

Why Aberdeen for this course?

The combination of track record, breadth and depth of expertise and experience, plus acknowledged teaching and research strength, makes Aberdeen an outstanding provider of education in all areas of law. A qualification in law from Aberdeen is highly respected by employers.

Our international School of Law is one the UK's elite training grounds for lawyers, ranked 5th in the UK for Law (The Complete University Guide and The Time Good University Guide 2019), joint 1st for Graduate Prospects (The Complete University Guide 2019) and highly rated for teaching, research and student care with 94% student satisfaction rating (NSS 2018).

The topic of dispute resolution is a particular strength at Aberdeen, with academics highly experienced in teaching and researching this subject. We teach this at undergraduate, professional postgraduate, and Masters levels, with our on-campus Masters programme in Professional Arbitration Skills accredited by leading professional body, the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb).

Our Law School offers a range of specialist Masters programmes, including in Oil and Gas Law, Energy Law, Environmental Law, Public and Private International Law, Arbitration, Human Rights, Intellectual Property Law and Criminal Justice. The LLB(Hons) and the Diploma in Professional Legal Practice are also taught here. You can use this credit-bearing, online course as a taster for continuing your professional education through a wide range of online and on-campus options across a wide spectrum of law.

What you'll study

You’ll be encouraged to become self-aware, through examining how you personally react to conflict situations.

You’ll study conflict theory and communication skills, with an introduction to the theory of mediation and its principles, structures and boundaries.

We’ll cover the different models of mediation, and you’ll learn how these can be applied in scenarios such as business, the workplace, healthcare setting, family situation and other potential conflict situations.

You’ll develop important and highly useful practical skills, and practise these in your online classroom, including feedback and discussion among your virtual classmates.

How you'll study

This online, 12-week distance-learning short course offers all the flexibility and convenience to study when, where and how you choose, and to fit your learning around your location, employment and personal commitments.

Our online courses are delivered through our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) as self-contained units of learning taught and assessed to the same quality as our degree programmes, and developed specifically for an online audience using a range of learning materials and assessment activities.

We aim to create an online classroom experience and student community which enables you to enjoy the same learning experience as students on our full degree programmes, including access to a suite of learning resources and support.

You’ll be guided through your programme with video lectures, tutorials, reading list, assignments, and plenty of interaction with your tutors and your virtual  classmates, including discussion boards and practising of your growing skills in mediation. Wherever you are in the world, as you enjoy the convenience of  online distance study, you will still feel part of our very special Aberdeen family and learning community.


You’ll be assessed on your online interactions with your tutors and classmates, and this will constitute 30% of your overall grade.

You’ll also submit assignments throughout your course, which will be 70% of your final grade.

Entry Requirements

Normally, a 2.1 honours degree (or equivalent) in Law will be required to be accepted onto this course. Relevant practical experience in a related field will also be beneficial.

All students entering the University, including online courses, must provide evidence that they can use English well enough to study our programmes effectively. Details of our English language entry requirements can be found on our English Language Requirements webpages. For details of our pre-sessional English courses see our Language Centre website.