Curriculum

Program Options

Option Course Load* Start-Term Time Commitment In-Person Requirement
M.S. On-Campus Full-Time Fall or Spring 3 or 4 terms 100%**
M.S. On-Campus Part-Time Fall or Spring 6 or 7 terms 100%**
M.S. Hybrid (Online with Intensive Study)*** Full-Time Only Spring Only 3 terms 3 weeks during summer

* International students are responsible for ensuring they have read and understand the University’s student visa application eligibility and requirements. Please note that it is not permissible to enroll while in B-1/B-2 status. In addition, if studying on a student visa, you must enroll full-time (12 credits per term) and study on campus.
** Select courses are available online or in hybrid format.
*** Because of visa regulations, international students cannot take online classes at any point while in the United States for their on-campus summer intensive. Students must turn in all online work from the spring semester before traveling to the United States, and must not start their Summer Session 2 online work until they have returned to their home country.

The 40-point curriculum emphasizes a pragmatic approach to resolving conflicts that arise in human resource management, community and labor organization, education and health administration, and law and business. Through examination of theory and practical methodology, the program focuses on constructive communication, ethical understanding, cultural awareness and sensitivity, and resolving conflicts in ways that are favorable for all parties. This is a rigorous and concentrated graduate degree program that demands a serious commitment of time and energy. In order to receive the Master of Science in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution, students must complete 40 points for degree completion and all requirements within three years (six terms, excluding summer) with an overall grade point average of 3.0 (B) or better.

For on-campus instruction, classes are mostly held in the evenings and on weekends. For the fully on-campus options, course meetings are either spread out over the 14-week term, as 7-week courses, scheduled as weekend, day-long intensives, or a combination of 7-week courses with some weekend intensives. Course schedules are posted in advance of the term so that students can plan accordingly. Attendance and participation are required. Students are also expected to devote significant time to completing reading and written assignments, group work as applicable and projects outside of class.

For online instruction, students are expected to complete assignments by their due dates, access the materials as per the schedule, and to participate in group-work as assigned.

Hybrid Option

New for 2019, the hybrid option combines asynchronous online study during the spring, second half of summer, and fall, with three consecutive weeks of face-to-face intensive study during the first half of summer.

While studying on Columbia’s campus, students have the opportunity to build community with their global cohort, faculty, alumni, program leadership, and others in the field; take part in activities in New York City; and explore the campus where Morton Deutsch pioneered the field of conflict resolution and founded the Morton Deutsch International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution (MD-ICCCR).

Intensive study includes Introduction to Negotiation, Introduction to Mediation, and Self as Instrument: Skills Practicum. Courses are scheduled to run 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. four days a week.

Classes feature role playing, presentations, group discussions, and projects. Activities during evenings and weekends may include a welcome dinner, campus and library tour, professional development workshops, panel discussions, guest speakers, and events with the MD-ICCCR and Advanced Consortium on Cooperation, Conflict, and Complexity (AC4).

We value strong and robust communities of learners and practitioners. To ensure that our hybrid program offers multiple modes of engagement, we will have monthly synchronous check-in sessions where hybrid students can engage together with their peers, faculty, and staff. These synchronous sessions, which on-campus students are welcome to attend as well, are meaningful opportunities for several reasons:

  • They facilitate networking and engagement
  • They promote inclusion, connection, and collegiality
  • They allow students to discuss academic and professional topics in real time
  • They further enhance community-building within the cohort, the program, and Columbia University
  • They help prepare students for their face-to-face intensive by gaining ease and familiarity with their cohort

The final intensive study course experience is a 4.5-hour kickoff for the program’s Fieldwork course, which includes opportunities for internships or working with NGOs. Engaging in this experience will further build the student’s community.

Students who are able to extend their required three-week stay have the option to pursue face-to-face elective coursework in an intensive week-long format.