Understanding Conflict – Mediation Theory and Practice

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Course Overview

Additional funding awarded for Modular Skills Courses starting in September 2021

This Modular Skills Provision course is funded by the Government of Ireland as part of an extension to the July Stimulus Provision Package 2020. This Higher Education initiative is part of the Government’s response to COVID-19 and is designed to help people enhance their employability, upskill and re-skill in the current climate.

All our courses are modules from our QQI approved BA and MA programmes in Business and Law and range from level 6 to 9 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) with 5 to 15 ECTS credits on offer. This enables successful learners to progress to a full qualification, with an exemption from that module/s for the corresponding BA or MA programme if they decide to do so at a later date. The courses are a blend of theory and practical learning and will provide participants with skills that can be immediately put into practice in the workplace.

The modular courses have a limited number of places available so early application is recommended. Places are allocated on a first-come-first-bases. The courses will be delivered live online and recorded for repeat viewing.


Eligible: Unemployed / Returners / Employed / Previously Self-Employed / Recently Graduated.

+ This course if fully funded if you are Unemployed, PUP Receiver, Returner to the workforce.
+ If you are currently employed, 90% of the course is funded. A 10% fee payment is required.
+ Further information on eligibility can be found here
+ Eligible Applicants must be resident in Ireland and must meet the nationality and EU residency rules as aligned to Springboard as detailed here.

What is the Course about?

The Understanding Conflict, Mediation Theory and Practice part-time level 9 course will provide the graduate with the ability to identify the causes of conflict, whether it be personal or professional, and the practical skills as to how best to deal with and resolve such conflict in a non-confrontational manner. Learners will develop their communication skills which are of critical importance in both the personal and professional spheres of mediation and conflict resolution. Upon completion of the course, successful graduates will be able to work independently and to a deadline, self-reflect on their work and present their findings.

This short course seeks to inspire participants with a vision of the possibilities which are open to the commercial, societal and third sectors through an informed understanding of the cause of conflict, the effective implementation of the principles of mediation and the optimisation of integrated concepts and strategies, and the role of new technologies and innovative thinking in achieving these.

Entry Requirements

+ Applicants should have a level 8 or equivalent award in any subject. Where the applicant does not have academic entry requirements but has gained relevant practical experience the application will be assessed accordingly. Outlined work experience will be required.
+ A brief personal statement stating reasons for wanting to complete the course is required for placement by all applicants.
+ Transcripts will be required if applicable.

Course Outline

The modules contained within this level 9 course are constituent modules within semester 1 of the MA in Dispute Resolution therefore, on successful completion, learners will be exempted from these modules on the level 9 programme and be able to gain a full masters level qualification should they so wish. Each module is also stand-alone so that participants can acquire skills and put them into practice immediately in the workplace.

Course Modules:
+ Understanding Conflict, Causes, Analysis and Dynamics (5 ECTS)
+ Principles of Mediation Theory (5 ECTS)
+ Principles of Mediation Practice (5 ECTS)

Course Duration

This course will begin delivery on Wednesday 8th and Thursday 9th September 2021, streamed live online and recorded via Zoom for 90 hours of tuition over 12 weeks.

Course Timetable

Full course timetable to follow shortly .

Anastasia Ward Barrister-at-Law

Anastasia Ward

Anastasia Ward B.L. graduated from U.C.D. with B.C.L. (Hons), and qualified as a Barrister in 1994, and practiced for in over 20 years at the Bar. Since 1995, Anastasia has lectured in institutions as diverse as the City of Dublin VEC (1997-2004) , DIT (1999-2001), Griffith College Dublin (2001 – 2010), and the Law School on behalf of the Law Society of Ireland (1995-2009). Anastasia joined the teaching team here in Independent College in 2007. In the Law Society, in addition to her role as an associate faculty member teaching inter alia Landlord and Tenant, Civil and Criminal Advocacy, Practice Development, Negotiation Theory and Practice, she acted as Examiner in both Civil Advocacy and Criminal Advocacy.

Anastasia currently holds the positions of Program Leader for the Master of the Arts in Dispute Resolution, Program Leader for the FE1 and Kings Inns Preparatory Courses, and the Certificate and Diploma in Irish Legal Studies.
In addition, on the MA in Dispute Resolution she lectures in Principles of Negotiation Theory, Applied Negotiation Practice, Theory and Practice of Arbitration and Workplace Dispute Resolution. On CILEX and DILEX she lectures on the Introduction to the Irish Legal System, Civil Litigation Practice and Procedure, Wills and Succession, and Family Law and Procedure Modules.

View Anastasia’s LinkedIn profile here

Sharron Morrissey MII Accredited

Sharron Morrissey
MII Accredited

Sharon Morrissey is one of Ireland’s leading experts and training consultants in Mediation and Conflict Resolution. Sharon’s role in Family Mediation provides a dignified and humane way of resolving disputes, helping parties to reach an agreement that is workable and sustainable. Sharon is determined to support parents to consciously co-parent during parental and family breakdown. She practices Humanistic Family Mediation, Interpersonal and Workplace Mediation. She has a MA in Conflict Resolution, BA in Applied Social Care and she is accredited member of the MII. She works with Private and Public Sector looking at the influences of conflict on productivity, staff morale, staff retention, bullying and harassment claims. She supports Management and Staff to become self-aware and therefore more in charge of their own conflict management styles.

Sharon has lectured in Conflict Coaching and Family Mediation at St. Angela’s College Sligo Ireland and in the Law Society in Ireland Griffith College and Independent College Dublin. She lectures in Family Mediation, Understanding Conflict, Mediation Theory and Practice and Reflective Practice. She has worked in the Community and Voluntary sector for over 25+ years, and during this time, she has played a pivotal role on the Boards of Management and Childcare Committees, always advocating for the Voice of the Child.


John Dunne  Barrister-at-Law

John Dunne

John Dunne B.L. is a practicing barrister of 12 years specialising in the area of criminal law, professional negligence, legal regulation and proceeds of crime matters. John is an accredited Mediator with the Mediators Institute of Ireland, a Workplace Investigator and a nationally qualified EMT with the Pre Hospital Emergency Care Council. John holds a LLB (Honours) in Irish Law, the Barrister at Law degree from the Kings Inns, an advanced diploma in medical law from the King’s Inns, Dublin and is a Fellow of International Institute of Law and Medicine. John is a former legal advisor to the Legal Services Regulatory Authority (LSRA).

John lectures on the Masters in Dispute Resolution programme in Commercial Dispute Resolution and on the principles of mediation theory and practice. John also teaches bespoke modules on the Certificate in Legal Students programme in Civil Litigation, Practice and Procedure.

John has been lecturing on the FE1 programme with Independent Colleges Dublin since June 2019 and have taught on an array of courses from tort law, contract law, constitutional law, criminal law and company law. John now focuses his attention to the delivery of the Company Law module and incorporates a heavy practical aspect to his classes where previous exam papers are discussed in class at the end of each module in addition to suggested homework which is then corrected offline with detailed feedback to the students.

View John’s LinkedIn profile here

Eileen Blishen Barrister-at-Law

Eileen Blishen

Eileen Blishen, BA, LLM, BL. Eileen has over twenty years’ experience within large law firms in Dublin, London, Ottawa and Vancouver, and practised as a barrister at the Irish Bar for sixteen years. She has her coaching practice, is also a qualified mediator and experienced lecturer. She holds Advanced Diplomas in both Personal, Leadership and Executive Coaching, and also Mental Health & Wellbeing Coaching. She is an accredited Coach Practitioner with the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC). Eileen is a Conflict & Dispute Resolution specialist and also lectures on our postgraduate level course (QQI Level 9) MA Dispute Resolution.

View Eileen’s LinkedIn profile here

David Smyth B.L. is currently Complaints and Resolutions Officer at the legal Services Regulatory Authority (Bio to follow shortly)

Orla Tuohy (Bio to follow shortly)


No Fees Apply if you are: Unemployed / in receipt of PUP / Returning to the workforce. The course is fully funded.

Fees Apply if you are: Employed. You must pay 10% of the overall course fee.
Cost per place is €165.00

Refund Policy
Students should note that the 10% course fee is non-refundable except in cases where courses do not proceed.

Personal data may be shared with the Higher Education Authority, for example to determine eligibility for funding or for statistical purposes. This will at all times be done in compliance with GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018. Further information can be found at https://hea.ie/about-us/data_protection

If you have questions about the course please
Fill out the Online Enquiry Form here

If you want to apply directly for a place on the course please
Fill out the Online Application Form here

Or you can also contact the Admissions Office:
[email protected]