UMass Boston

Conflict Resolution MA

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Develop essential skills to navigate and manage conflict, from the interpersonal to international.

Students in UMass Boston's Conflict Resolution Master's program examine the causes and characteristics of local and global conflict, and develop skills related to peaceful problem solving and collaborative decision making. Graduates work in fields as varied as policy, health care, education, peacebuilding, human resources, law, and ministry. We are involved in court mediation, peace education, restorative justice, inter-religious dialogue, bridging the Israeli Palestinian conflict, and much more.

The 36 credits required for the MA can be completed in 2 years with full-time study. Part-time study is available.

Careers and Skills

The conflict resolution graduate programs provide the theoretical foundations and practical skills to advance your current career trajectory or help you transition to a new one. Our alumni work in fields as diverse as business, government, education, health care, and international humanitarian work.

Program Strengths

  • Experience an intimate learning environment that fosters close relationships between faculty and students
  • Explore conflict in interpersonal, organizational, intercultural, and international settings
  • Collaborate with our expert faculty of scholars and practitioners committed to student success
  • Gain hands-on experience through in-court mediation, restorative justice, and conflict resolution internships
  • Expand your network and knowledge base with relevant program-sponsored speaker series, conferences, and events
  • Enjoy the flexibility of evening and weekend classes

Housed within the Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security and Global Governance.

Start Your Application

Plan Your Education

How to Apply

Applicants must meet general graduate admission requirements in addition to the following program-specific requirements:

  • Writing Sample (optional)
  • Resume/cv (required)
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Official transcripts (completed Bachelor’s degree required)
  • Statement of Purpose - Answer all 3 questions:
  1. Outline the development of your interest in conflict resolution, leading to your decision to apply to the program. (500-1,000 words).
  2. Describe one or more specific experiences you have had with conflict. What was your role? What were your rewards and frustrations? (500-1,000 words).
  3. How will you apply the skills, knowledge, and perspective acquired through the program in your current and/or future employment? (500-1,000 words

Please visit the International Graduate Applicants if applicable.

Deadlines & Cost

Deadlines: February 15 (priority) and May 1 (final) for fall

Application Fee: The nonrefundable application fee is $75. UMass Boston alumni and current students that plan to complete degree requirements prior to graduate enrollment can submit the application without paying the application fee.

Program Cost Information: Bursar's website


Required Courses (9 Credits)

  • CONRES 621 - Negotiation (M) 3 Credit(s)
  • CONRES 623 - Introductory Theory 3 Credit(s)
  • CONRES 635 - Research Methods in Dispute Resolution 3 Credit(s)

Internship (3 to 6 Credits)

  • CONRES 627 - Inter-Group Dialogue & Facilitation 6 Credit(s)
  • CONRES 690 - Court Internship 6 Credit(s)
  • CONRES 692 - Internship 3-6 Credit(s)

Electives (15 to 21 Credits)

Complete five to seven electives (depending on number of credits needed to meet the 36 required credits for the program) from any graduate courses in the Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance. Courses from other departments and institutions may be accepted with approval of the graduate program director.

Capstone (3 to 6 Credits)

Complete one of the options below.

Integrative Paper Option

  • CONRES 693 - Capstone Seminar 3-6 Credit(s)

Master’s Project Option

Complete six credits.

  • CONRES 693 - Capstone Seminar 3-6 Credit(s) - take for three credits
  • CONRES 689 - Master’s Project in Conflict Resolution 3 Credit(s)

Master’s Thesis Option

  • CONRES 693 - Capstone Seminar 3-6 Credit(s) - take for three credits
  • CONRES 699 - Master’s Thesis in Conflict Resolution 3 Credit(s)

Graduation Criteria

Complete 36 credits from ten to twelve courses including three required courses, one internship course, five to seven electives, and a capstone requirement.

Attend 10 colloquia (4 are offered each semester).

Capstone: Students must complete a master’s thesis, master’s project, or participate in an intensive integrative seminar.

Statute of limitations: Five years

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

  • Gain a thorough grounding in the theory of conflict and its resolution.
  • Explore the social, psychological, political, structural, and cultural factors which give rise to conflict and shape its course.
  • Understand the effects of different types of conflict on people and the relationships among them.
  • Develop skills in the practice, design, and evaluation of a variety of conflict management and resolution applications relevant to a broad range of contexts and group sizes. These skills include nonviolent, collaborative resolution methods, such as mediation, facilitation, negotiation, dialogue, organizational change, and consensual decision making.

Related Programs


Graduate Program Director Jeffrey Pugh
jeffrey.pugh [at]
(617) 287-7489

Conflict Resolution Programs Department
conresglobal [at]

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