Dispute Resolution

In the Dispute Resolution concentration students can prepare for careers as neutrals, advocates, or consultants in conflict resolution. The rise of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in employment relations and other fields has created opportunities for students interested in pursuing careers as mediators, arbitrators, or facilitators. A growing number of corporations and other organizations have hired dispute resolution specialists to manage their ADR programs. Federal and State agencies, such as the United States Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service and the United States Department of Labor, and international agencies, such as the International Labour Organization, employ specialists in dispute resolution. Given the Diversity in these career options, the concentration is quite flexible and is intended to address student needs and interests.

The MILR degree requires a minimum of 48 credit hours, encompassing at least 16 courses comprised of 6 core courses, 6 concentration courses and elective courses.


Students must complete a minimum of 6 courses in Dispute Resolution, but there are no set requirements regarding the nature of the elective courses. Rather, students should design a course of study that suits their needs under the direction of their faculty advisor. Students choosing the dispute resolution concentration can choose from courses on the theory and practice of conflict management both in conjunction with and outside of collective bargaining. See below for some possible courses in this area. (See Courses of Study Catalog for full course descriptions)

  • ILRLR 4040 Contract Administration
  • ILRLR 6011 Negotiation: Theory and Practice
  • ILRLR 6012 Managing and Resolving Conflict
  • ILRLR 6020 The Practice of Labor Arbitration
  • ILRLR 6022 Arbitration
  • ILRLR 6023 Advanced Issues in Mediation
  • ILRLR 6070 Values, Rights, and Justice at Work
  • ILRLR 6082 Collective Bargaining Negotiations Simulation
  • ILRLR 6892 Negotiated and Collaborative Decision Making

The Scheinman Institute on Conflict Resolution is housed in the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University. More than 40 programs on conflict resolution have been developed at universities and law schools throughout the nation but ICR is the only program with an exclusive focus on the workplace. ILR also maintains the largest concentration of faculty in the related fields of conflict and dispute resolution and problem solving of any university. The faculty's expertise and broad experience in working with all types of organizations, combined with access to an expansive research network, ensures the high quality of our conflict and dispute resolution education and services.