Using mediation as a way to resolve disputes efficiently has been a core part of the Australian legal system for many years and is now being incorporated into other legal systems around the world.  Students in this course are immersed in mediation theory, policy and practice, developing a clear understanding of the role of mediation as a dispute management process. They develop the basic skills necessary to conduct an effective mediation in a legal context.

The course delivers a sound knowledge of the analytical models and characteristics of mediation, the ability to analyse its advantages and drawbacks, and distinguish it from other dispute resolution processes. The course identifies the range of skills used by mediators and the ethical challenges they face, and the role of lawyers, legal representatives and the parties involved in the mediation process. Mediation is suitable for academics, lawyers, mediators and other dispute resolution professionals, in addition to potential users of mediation services, advocates and mediation supporters.

Accreditation Workshops for current students

If you are already enrolled in this course, register for your Meditation Accreditation Workshop via Blackboard.  See 'announcements' in Blackboard for the registration link.


Topics covered include:

  • current issues in mediation
  • mediation - definition and principles
  • mediation - a comparison with other ADR processes
  • conflict
  • contemporary mediation practices
  • mediator's function
  • assisting the communications
  • mediation skills
  • lawyers as negotiators/mediators
  • ethical dilemmas in mediation
  • legal issues for mediators
  • contemporary mediation directions - local & global.

Adjunct Professor of Law, Mr Pat Cavanagh (Conflict and Interest)

Patrick Cavanagh Pat Cavanagh has been involved in the commercial mediation and negotiation industry since 1986. He has a background as both a legal practitioner and an academic, and delivers a number of postgraduate alternative dispute resolution courses for the TC Beirne School of Law.

He has taught and privately consulted on ADR in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, the United States, Malaysia, Indonesia and Canada. Patrick is currently undertaking a United Nations Development Programme that introduces mediation to the Turkish Civil Code.

Course information

Course code

Course profile


This course may also be taken as a CPD course or a non-award course. 

CPD details and applications