Program Description

The MS in Conflict Analysis and Resolution integrates conflict analysis and resolution theory, research methods, practical techniques, and ethical perspectives of the field. Students learn specific practices for addressing sources of hostility and methods of altering negative patterns of interaction, applying this knowledge in laboratory simulations, workshops, internships, and field practice. Graduates work in a variety of settings where conflict resolution is useful and interest groups are in conflict with current and emergent public policy.

What it costs

The cost is $489 per credit hour for VA state residents. For out-of-state students who enroll in the online program and take all coursework online, the cost is $715 per credit hour. Fees include a $35 per credit hour Distance Learning fee. Education Resource, New Student, and other mandatory university and course fees may apply.

Application Deadline

The application deadline for Spring is November 16. For Fall, the priority deadline is January 20 and the final deadline is May 31. Applications submitted after the deadline are considered upon space availability.

Request Info

Program Summary

90 Percent Online

Program: Conflict Analysis and Resolution

Degree: MS

College/School: School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution

Credits: 42 total

Who should apply?

Students examine conflicts at all levels – interpersonal, intragroup, intergroup, and international – and analyze the root causes, defining characteristics, and wide-ranging consequences of authentic conflict cases and the parties involved. Additionally, students learn specific practices for addressing sources of hostility and methods of altering negative patterns of interaction. Anyone who desires to mitigate, resolve, and prevent negative relations between parties will benefit from this program.

Why choose George Mason?

  • Mason’s Conflict Analysis and Resolution program is the largest in the world.
  • There are over 1,000 alumni of the program who are connected through a lively network in all continents.
  • Students in the bachelor’s program can earn an accelerated master’s online.
  • S-CAR is engaged in numerous initiatives including the Genocide Prevention Program, the Sudan Project, the Experiential Learning Project, the Caucasus Project, and many more.
  • This program can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis, with up to six years from the time of first enrollment to complete the degree.
  • You can take courses as a non-degree student to determine if the MS program is right for you.
  • The program is fully online with the exception of a one-week residency, usually during the month of May.
  • Online classes accommodate those who work full time or live remotely.
  • A flexible curriculum allows our students to pursue their interests.
  • Our faculty members are among the leading experts in the field of conflict analysis and resolution.

Program requirements may change; please refer to the Mason Course Catalog for the most up-to-date requirements.

Requirements: 42 credits total

  • 15 credits required courses
  • 21 credits elective courses
  • 6 credits integrative courses

At least 90% of the courses in this program can be completed online. Most online courses are delivered asynchronously and offerings vary by semester.

Required Courses

  • CONF 501 Introduction to Conflict Analysis and Resolution | 3 credits
  • CONF 601 Theories of Conflict and Conflict Resolution | 3 credits
  • CONF 610 Conflict Inquiry | 3 credits
  • CONF 620 Reflective Practice in Interpersonal-Multiparty Conflicts | 3 credits
  • CONF 642 Integration of Theory and Practice | 3 credits

CONF 620 is part of a required residency component. Locations are yet to be determined. Advisors will work with you to determine the best way to meet this requirement.

Elective Courses

  • CONF 706 Ethics and Conflict | 3 credits
  • CONF 707 Gender and Violence | 3 credits
  • CONF 708 Identity and Conflict | 3 credits
  • CONF 720 Ethnic and Cultural Factors in Conflict Resolution | 3 credits
  • CONF 754 Micro Theories of Conflict | 3 credits
  • CONF 755 Transforming Conflict Through Insight | 3 credits
  • CONF 756 Addressing Intractable Conflict | 3 credits

Additional elective options are offered face-to-face. Contact your program coordinator for approved options.

Integrative Courses (Select One)

  • CONF 694 Internship | 6 credits
  • CONF 799 Master’s Thesis | 6 credits

Tuition (2018-2019)

Virginia Resident$489.00 plus fees
Non-Virginia Resident$715* plus fees
Distance Learning Fee$35
Education Resource Fee$60 - $100 (per semester)

*For students enrolled in the online program. Students who enroll in this online program will receive a discount off of the university’s approved regular tuition rate for out-of-state SCAR graduate students. Please note that students who register for the online program will be restricted to taking their courses in an online format and will not be able to take Mason’s face-to-face courses.

Please refer to the Students Accounts Office website for more information on tuition and fees.

Financial Aid

For information on loans and scholarships, visit the Office of Student Financial Aid. For information regarding grants, tuition waivers and other merit aid, please inquire with your graduate department. Additionally, consider speaking to your current employer about tuition reimbursement for graduate study.

Career Descriptions

  • Security/Intelligence: Presidential Management Fellowship Program, Department of State, USAID, Department of Defense, FBI
  • Non-profit: International Rescue Committee, Northern Virginia Mediation Service, Search for Common Ground, The Institute for Multi Track Diplomacy
  • Human Rights and Humanitarian Disaster Relief: Red Cross, Oxfam International, Amnesty International, International Crisis Group
  • Public Participation/Service: Social Services, Community Development
  • Multi-Lateral Agencies: World Bank, United Nations, International Monetary Fund
  • Education: DC Public Schools, Engaging Governments in Genocide Prevention, Integral Peacemaker Institute
  • Research: Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Brookings Institution, USIP, RAND Corporation
  • Other areas such as International Mediation, Consulting, and Policy

Mason Graduates – Sample Career List

President SourcePoint Consulting, Inc.
Foreign Affairs Officer US Department of State
Emergency Operations Assistant US Agency for International Development
Community Liaison/Assistant Director Colorado State University
Policy Specialist Center for Community Change
Associate Director – Global Negotiation Project Harvard University
Director Alliance for Conflict Transformation, Inc.
Peaceable Schools Coordinator DC Public Schools
Project Manager Center for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation
Special Agent US Department of State
Collaborative Resolution Program Manager US Department of Defense
Communications Manager Advocacy Institute
Founder and Director Creative Solutions Unlimited
EPA Regional Public Liaison/Conflict Resolution Specialist US Environmental Protection Agency
Interfaith Program Coordinator Progressive Jewish Alliance
Associate Prof. of Conflict Studies Eastern Mennonite University
Police Deputy Chief Fairfax County Police Department
International Security Specialist US Department of State
Peace and Development Advisor United Nations
Mediator/Facilitator California State University
Executive Director Evergreen State College

As a Mason student, you may also contact Mason Career Services for more career information and counseling.

Program ContactMonique Barner
Asst. Director for Graduate Admissions, SCAR
School ContactSchool for Conflict Analysis and Resolution
Phone: (703) 993-1300
Program Website
Follow S-CAR on Twitter@SCARatGMU
"Like" S-CAR on Facebook

All applicants should review School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (S-CAR) steps to Apply Now. Please follow the S-CAR guidelines for International Applicants.


  • Hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university or college
  • Achieve a minimum GPA of 3.0 in bachelor’s program
  • Previous coursework in social sciences and prior work experience are desirable

Application Materials

  • Graduate application
  • Application fee
  • Transcripts of all post-secondary education
  • Resume
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • Goals statement based on prompt:  “Tell us something about how your past experience has prepared you to engage with conflict and how this program will equip you for your future.”
  • GRE or other standardized test scores are not required but may be submitted

If you have any questions during the application process, please contact the S-CAR Office of Graduate Admissions at or (703) 993-1300.