Develop your qualifications in negotiation, mediation and arbitration.

Prepare for a career in the non-court dispute resolution industry.

Dispute resolution is faster, less adversarial and less public than the traditional litigation process. It’s why organisations and individuals are increasingly choosing to resolve disputes outside of court.

Join our online LLM in Dispute Resolution to gain the skills, confidence, qualifications and connections to make a career in this area.

  • Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb), and can exempt you from its Membership or Fellowship exams.
  • Flexible, so you control your workload each term.
  • Part-time, so you can keep working while you build qualifications.

This is an LLM entirely dedicated to dispute resolution methods, rather than combining dispute processes with a substantive subject. And with a wide range of course options, you can specialise in the methods that interest you.

Who can study online LLM Dispute Resolution

This distance-learning LLM is open to professionals without a law degree.

It’s ideal for any professional keen to enhance their non-court dispute resolution skills and qualifications.

You’ll cover all essential dispute resolution techniques and theories


You’ll learn to negotiate disputes on behalf of:

  • a client
  • yourself
  • an employer.


You’ll graduate:

  • as a qualified mediator
  • better able to handle staff disagreements and difficult discussions.


You’ll learn to:

  • prepare for arbitration hearings
  • present cases in an arbitral tribunal
  • take a case through to a decision as an arbitrator.
CIArb - Evolving to resolve

This degree is accredited by

We’re a recognised course provider for CIArb Membership and Fellowship on the International Arbitration and Mediation Pathways.

Complete specific courses to the required standard and you’ll be exempt from the CIArb’s Membership or Fellowship exams.

What you’ll study

You can choose to study for an:

  • LLM (180 credits)
  • Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits)
  • Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits)
  • or start with one of the short courses that make up this degree (typically 15 credits).

How you’ll study

Course options

Our distance-learning LLM in Dispute Resolution gives you a range of course options to choose from.

Tailor your qualification to the areas of dispute resolution you’re most interested in. And choose the way you want to study too:

  • Online, or via a mix of online and on-campus courses
  • Complete your final year with flexible courses, a dissertation, or a Professional Skills Summer School.

On-campus options

This LLM is delivered online with the exception of:

  • Professional Arbitration Skills – this optional course features 11 days on campus at the University of Aberdeen in June.

Online learning

Your online teaching is delivered through MyAberdeen, our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It holds all the materials, tools and support you’ll need in your studies. Take a look around MyAberdeen.

You can access your learning materials on computer, smartphone and laptop, 24 hours a day.

You’ll also have online access to our award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library and the Taylor Library, a dedicated resource for law students. Both have first-class collections of reference works in law and related subjects. Find out more about our libraries.


This degree is assessed online, with the exception of our on-campus course options. These feature on-campus teaching and assessments.

Your support team

Our friendly team are here to answer any queries you have before, during and after your studies.

Online learning in the School of Law

Advocates share their experiences of working while studying law online with us.

Where this will take you


This degree will prepare you to pursue work in all dispute resolution disciplines.

Mediation careers

You will graduate from the LLM as a qualified mediator. Although some mediators are lawyers, many are not. This degree caters for professionals from all disciplines who want to become mediators.

  • As a lawyer representing clients who may use mediation, you’ll be at an advantage understanding the techniques a mediator will use.
  • Anyone in a management position will benefit from learning the principles, theories and practical techniques of mediation too.

Arbitration careers

This LLM will also help any professional enhance their career prospects in arbitration.

Arbitrators are drawn from a range of professional groups, including lawyers, engineers, surveyors, construction professionals, the financial and accounting professions and more.

  • As a lawyer representing clients in an arbitral process, you need to fully understand how it differs from litigation. This degree will allow you to diversify your practice into this lucrative, growing area, especially internationally.
  • Transactional lawyers and professionals need to know what is involved in arbitration too, since many commercial contracts contain a dispute resolution clause; if it is poorly drafted, this can cause considerable problems later.

Lifelong career support

Our careers support doesn’t stop when you graduate.

You have access to our free careers service while you study, and beyond.

We’re here with 1:1 appointments, CV checks, interview prep, and to connect you with job opportunities around the world.

Fees and funding

The fees quoted above are based on you starting your studies with us in the 2022/23 academic year.

We have confirmed that our fees will rise by 5% for the 2023/24 academic year. Fees for future academic years are provisional, but our indicative fees assume a 5% fee rise each year.

Pay as you go

Don’t worry, you do not have to pay the full degree fee upfront.

You can pay for your degree one term at a time. This gives you a flexible way to spread the cost.

Why study Law online with the University of Aberdeen?

Study at a university with one of the largest and most internationally experienced teams of legal experts in any European law school.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements differ slightly depending on the qualification you choose.

LLM, PgDip, and PgCert in Mediation

  • 2:1 (upper-second) honours degree (or equivalent) in Law, or
  • 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent) in another discipline, or
  • significant professional experience.

PgCert in International Arbitration

  • 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent) in Law from a common law jurisdiction.

The reason for this additional requirement is that students on this route do not require to take the Legal Principles course.

These are our minimum entry requirements. They are given as a guide and do not guarantee entry.

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Customise your degree

Master of Laws

180 credits


This indicative cost is based on 180 credits of study over two years, starting in January 2023.

Postgraduate Diploma

120 credits


This indicative cost is based on 120 credits of study over two years, starting in January 2023.

Postgraduate Certificate

60 credits


This indicative cost is based on 30 credits of study per term, starting in January 2023.

Apply for this programme

Start month
January or September

This indicative cost is based on 180 credits of study over two years, starting in January 2023.

Apply via our Applicant Portal
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