About the International Peace & Conflict Resolution Master’s Degree Program
Students in the graduate program in International Peace and Conflict Resolution pursue a master’s degree that includes three terms (fall, spring and spring of second year) of intensive academic training at our Glenside campus as well as two terms (summer/fall) of study away and internship experience.
Arcadia’s IPCR program is one of the few graduate programs in the field of conflict resolution with a built-in overseas component—one that is founded on Arcadia’s long tradition of University-based international programs.
Students can use their study away courses to complement the academic training they receive at Arcadia by completing specialized courses in areas of a student’s choosing, including international law, sustainable development, mediation, public health, human rights, business and peace education.
Students also complete an internship directly related to their academic and professional interests. Internships allow students to develop critical professional skills and contacts and enable students to successfully transition to the professional world upon graduation. In the spring term of their second year, students return to Arcadia’s Glenside campus to complete a culminating activity or capstone project and pursue career placement and professional opportunities.
The IPCR program is structured to develop competencies in:
- Theories and dynamics of conflict, conflict resolution, post-conflict reconstruction & development, international law & organizations.
- Tools and techniques of conflict management, conflict resolution and conflict transformation.
- Conflict analysis, which involves developing an understanding of how states and other third parties impact conflict.
- The methods used to diffuse conflict on a variety of levels— interpersonal, groups and institutions.
- Interdisciplinary perspectives on the field of peace and conflict resolution.
- Critical thinking skills and research methods, which span the spectrum of qualitative and quantitative methods.
- Cultural sensitivity and inter-cultural understandings through international and field experiences.
- Oral presentation and communication skills.
In their first year of study, students complete the core curriculum, which includes two (2) required courses: theories of peace and conflict resolution and a foundations course in research methods; at least three (3) praxis courses in applied professional skills; elective courses from a range of topics such as Non-Governmental Organizations, International Law, World Religions, Social Life of War, Mediation, and Economics and the Environment. Students also have the option of participating in largely subsidized week-long intensive field study in Northern Ireland during late October.
In the second term of the first year, students begin researching and applying for study away and internship opportunities that will further their academic and career interests. Advisors, the IPCR Program Coordinator and IPCR Director help guide students in this process to maximize options. By the end of the first year, all credit bearing internship and study away experiences must be submitted for approval to the Director.
Students are required to have an international experience either through their study away or internship choice. Students must acquire nine credits in this international experience with a maximum of three credits acquired through an Arcadia Global Field Study course.
Global Field Study courses vary from year to year, depend on student interest and faculty availability and usually have additional travel fees associated with them. Past Global Field Study courses have traveled to Ukraine, Rwanda, Costa Rica, Kosovo and Cyprus. One Global Field Study course may count towards the international experience.
The second year begins in the summer term giving students three terms (summer, fall and spring) to acquire 9 study away credits, 9 internship credits (240 Hours) and 3 capstone credits (spring term) plus additional electives if desired. The final spring term is focused around the capstone project and course, as well as professional development activities intended to aid students in career placement.