The Moritz College of Law at Ohio State University is best known for producing the Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution (JDR), the journal of record for the ABA’s section on dispute resolution. The JDR, which includes student writers and editors, is the most-cited journal in the field of ADR. Students can also participate in several competitions in mediation and arbitration, including Moritz’s own Lawrence Negotiation Competition. The school offers over 20 courses in ADR, with students required to earn 15 credits before receiving a Certificate in Dispute Resolution. In addition, students are required to complete a Mediation Practica, a clinic where students mediate disputes in the Columbus area.
Despite ranking 123rd overall, Hamline University’s Dispute Resolution Institute is rated #3 by U.S. News. Based in St. Paul, Minnesota, Hamline offers over 25 courses in dispute resolution, along with sponsoring study abroad programs in Budapest, Jerusalem, and London. Students can earn certificates in dispute resolution, advocacy and problem-solving, international business negotiation, and global arbitration law and practice. The institute also maintains its own press, the DRI Press, and is currently coordinating with organizations like the JAMS Foundation and The Negotiation Institute to re-design existing negotiation pedagogy. In addition, Hamline operates a mediation center to provide training to attorneys and neutrals.
For over 30 years, Harvard Law has offered its Harvard Mediation Program (HMP), which combines the best of theory and practice. The program begins with 32 hours of “Basic Training” in mediation, which includes both instruction and role playing. From there, students proceed to “Advanced Training,” where they master specific areas like harassment and landlord-tenant disputes. After completing this training, students spend two semesters in practice, where they mediate disputes under the supervision of HMP members in one of five district courts in the Boston area. Students can earn additional credits for performing pro bono mediation work.
The University of Missouri boasts one of the largest full-time faculties devoted to ADR. In particular, the university’s Center for the Study of Dispute Resolution (CSDR) is best known for its LL.M. in dispute resolution, the first degree of its kind. The LL.M. program, which is geared toward students who’ve earned their J.D., provides practical experience through its mediation clinic, where students work on cases referred by the U.S. District Court, the Missouri Commission for Human Rights, and small claims court. The school also publishes the Journal of Dispute Resolution, considered to be among the leading legal publications in ADR.
The University of Oregon is best known for its two-year Conflict and Dispute Resolution Master’s Program. Thanks to the program’s small class sizes, students receive heavy personal attention to help them become master mediators. The program consists of 38 credits, with curriculum ranging from mediating social issues like climate change to handling family conflicts. The program includes an internship that can be completed within the U.S. or globally, and a paper or practical initiative, which must be defended before a thesis committee. The law school also oversees a Community Dispute Resolution (OOCDR) office, which coordinated over 5,000 pro bono ADR hours from four law schools in Oregon last year.