Legal Studies (LGST) 489

Alternative Dispute Resolution (Revision 1)

CRJS 489 image

Revision 1 is closed for registrations, replaced by current version

Delivery Mode: Individualized study online or grouped study (check availability)

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Applied Studies

Prerequisite: None

Precluded course: CRJS 489 and HSRV 487. (LGST 489 is a cross-listed course—a course listed under three different disciplines—with CRJS 489 and HSRV 487. LGST 489 may not be taken for credit by students who have obtained credit for CRJS 489 or HSRV 487.)

Detailed Syllabus and Assessment Information

Sample Pages

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Legal Studies home page

LGST 489 is not available for Challenge.

Questions about this course? Contact the course professor: Archie Zariski.


The main objective of this course is to provide students with a theoretical and practical understanding of alternative dispute resolutions (ADR). The course focuses on the two main dispute resolution methods: negotiation and mediation. It also introduces the basic principles and techniques of various dispute resolution methods. Different areas of the law and law enforcement in which such methods are or could be used are explored in the course, including mediating family law disputes, negotiating contracts, and resolving disputes online.

Course Objectives

  1. Acquire thorough familiarity with the various dispute resolution methods that are “alternative” to traditional methods on both a practical and a theoretical level.
  2. Begin to acquire skills, procedures, techniques, and characteristics needed to engage in the various forms of alternative dispute resolution.
  3. Recognize specific issues and concerns within ADR, such as gender, power, and culture, and be aware of the impact of these issues on the process, the client, the practitioner, and the appropriateness of ADR.
  4. Recognize the possible importance of alternative dispute resolution within the Canadian justice system.
  5. Consider conflict and conflict resolution in a different way—one that properly serves clients and contributes to a fair justice system and a safe community.


LGST 489: Alternative Dispute Resolution comprises the following 12 units.

  • Unit 1: Conflicts, Disputes, and Claims
  • Unit 2: Introduction to Alternative Dispute Resolution: What Is It? Why Use It?
  • Unit 3: Negotiation
  • Unit 4: The Negotiation Process
  • Unit 5: Negotiation in Practice
  • Unit 6: Principles of Mediation
  • Unit 7: The Mediation Process
  • Unit 8: Mediation in Practice
  • Unit 9: Hybrid Processes
  • Unit 10: Online Dispute Resolution
  • Unit 11: Designing and Evaluating Systems and Processes
  • Unit 12: The Future of Alternative Dispute Resolution


To receive credit for LGST 489, you must complete all course assignments, achieve a grade of at least 50 percent on the final exam, and achieve an overall course grade of at least “D” 50 percent. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Assign 1 written response Assign 2 written response Assign 3 written response Assign 4 oral presentation Assign 5 oral response Final Exam Total
10% 10% 10% 10% 10% 50% 100%

The final examination for this course must be taken online with an AU-approved exam invigilator at an approved invigilation centre. It is your responsibility to ensure your chosen invigilation centre can accommodate online exams. For a list of invigilators who can accommodate online exams, visit the Exam Invigilation Network.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


The textbook is sent to each student when they register.

Macfarlane, J. (Ed.). (2011). Dispute resolution: Readings and case studies (3rd ed.). Toronto: Emond Montgomery Publications Limited.

Other materials

Students will access all other course materials online.

Current Grouped Study Locations

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 1, June 13, 2012