Campus: Dominguez Hills - July 6, 2007

Master’s in Negotiation, Conflict Resolution & Peacebuilding Among Most Affordable Online

The Negotiation, Conflict Resolution & Peacebuilding (NCRP) program at California State University, Dominguez Hills is one of the best values online for a master’s program in psychology, human services and the social sciences fields.

Recently,, a clearinghouse that showcases accredited online degree programs, released its “Top 10 Ranked Best Buys in Online Graduate Degrees: Psychology, Human Services.” The CSUDH Negotiation, Conflict Resolution & Peacebuilding program ranked fourth for its affordability, at approximately $7,200, at the time of the ranking, to complete the degree online. (Effective with fall semester 2007, the cost will be $9,000 due to an increase in the required units, from 30 to 36, and a slight fee increase per unit, but the program will still retain its current ranking of fourth.)

The ranking was based on a survey of 26 accredited universities that offer distance master’s degrees in psychology, human services and the social sciences. The average cost of distance master’s in the human services field, according to, is $19,000.

“This is fabulous news,” said A. Marco Turk, J.D., director of the program. “It is a reaffirmation that all the efforts that have been made in the last several years to improve and build the program have borne fruit.”

Students in the NCRP master’s degree program take part in a comprehensive study of the practical skills, methods, theory and research needed to be effective mediators, negotiators and conflict managers. The skills they learn can be applied to police work, counseling, education, human resources management, labor relations, litigation, business negotiations, the foreign service, supervision and administration.

To earn a degree from the program, students must complete 36 units, or 12 courses of 12 weeks each, culminating in the preparation and defense of a portfolio. The cost per unit is $250, up from $240 of past semesters.

The degree can be completed without ever coming on campus and is available to anyone anywhere in the world. Turk said students from other countries are taking advantage of that opportunity.

“What is not generally known is that we have also achieved international recognition in that we have students from various countries besides the USA enrolled in the online master’s program, as well as in the on-campus cohort,” he said. “We also have cooperative arrangements in place with two foreign universities and are working on achieving additional collaborations with others.”

The success of the online master’s program is also leading to collaboration with Southwestern Law School of Los Angeles. Southwestern’s students will be able to enroll in the NCRP program and earn a master’s concurrently with their law degree. Turk said he hopes the partnership with Southwestern Law School is just the beginning of future plans to expand the program, while at the same time keeping it affordable.

Admission requirements for the program are a bachelor’s degree in any field and a minimum GPA of 3.20 in the last 60 semester (90 quarter) units from an accredited college or university, along with three letters of recommendation and a biographical essay. Students are admitted in both the fall and spring semesters

Contact: Amy Bentley-Smith, (310) 243-2001,

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