Conflict Resolution and Negotiation

Course Number: OCL 7380
Course Name: Conflict Resolution and Negotiation (Online)
Course Description:    This course examines the nature of conflict as it occurs in organizations, how conflict can function both destructively and constructively in that context, and the history of how conflict has traditionally been viewed and managed in organizational contexts.  It also considers the theory underlying the creation of integrated conflict management systems in organizations, the nature of such systems and how they are developed, designed, and evaluated.
Prerequisites:    BUSADMIN 7330 Introduction to Organizational Change Leadership.
Level: Graduate
Credits: 3
Format: Online
Program: Master of Science in Organizational Change Leadership

Registration Instructions

NOTE: The information below is representative of the course and is subject to change.  The specific details of the course will be available in the Desire2Learn course instance for the course in which a student registers.

Additional Information

Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of this course, you should be able to

  • Explain the definition of negotiation, the key elements of a negotiation process, and the distinct types of negotiation.
  • Set goals for a negotiation process.
  • Analyze the major elements of a negotiation strategy and the processes for selecting a strategy.
  • Compare and contrast the roles played by perceptions, cognitions, and emotions in a negotiation process.
  • Apply the techniques presented to improve communication processes in any organization.
  • Demonstrate how ethics apply to the negotiation process.
  • Describe how the negotiation process changes when a negotiator is required to represent someone else’s interests rather than his/her own.
  • Explain how coalitions form and develop and what makes them strong or weak.
  • Contrast the differences in how men and women negotiate and how they are perceived in negotiation processes.
  • Compare and contrast how the behaviors of expert negotiators differ from those of less experienced negotiators.
  • Apply the tools and approaches that negotiators can use to break and resolve impasses.
  • Compare the alternative dispute resolution systems used by organizations.

Unit Descriptions

Unit 1
This unit corresponds to the first four chapters in the text.  Chapter 1 examines the basic processes of negotiation.  Distributive and integrative negotiation concepts are then discussed in Chapter 2, followed by an explanation of the strategies and tactics that characterize the distributive bargaining process and an evaluation of the consequences of using each. Chapter 2 concludes with information on how to successfully close a negotiation process.  Chapter 3 covers these same concepts for an integrative bargaining process.  The unit closes with Chapter 4’s discussion of how negotiators can create strategies and plans to achieve their desired outcomes.  The focus of the chapter is effective negotiation planning.

Unit 2
Examines the key subprocesses of negotiation that explain why negotiations proceed as they do.  This includes how perception, cognition, and emotion shape the data received and processed about the issues being negotiated, the other parties involved, and the dynamics of the negotiation.  Perception, cognition, and emotion are the basic components of all social encounters.  A working knowledge of how people perceive and process information is critical to understanding why negotiators behave the way they do.    

This unit also presents information on basic communication concepts including verbal and nonverbal communication.  In addition, the concepts of power and influence are discussed.  Both are obviously important in learning to be an effective negotiator.

Finally, Unit 2 presents a discussion of ethical considerations in negotiation processes.  Ethical conduct is extremely important in negotiations, yet negotiators often find themselves tempted to ignore what they feel they should do and instead use tactics that are unethical, yet potentially effective.

Unit 3
Examines negotiations in a broad social context of multiple parties that can play many different roles.  Lesson 8 focuses on the ways relationships impact negotiations and discusses how negotiations change when additional parties are added to the process and when negotiators act as agents for others.  Lesson 9 presents information on situations in which multiple parties are negotiating with one another and may form coalitions. How and why coalitions are formed and developed is discussed, along with some practical advice for building and maintaining successful coalitions. 

Unit 4
Includes one lesson that addresses the many ways individuals differ in their approaches to negotiation and a second lesson that explores the ways negotiators can move past impasses.  Lesson 10 focuses on how negotiator gender, personality, and ability differences can affect their negotiation styles and tactics.  Lesson 11 examines why negotiation processes can fail and possible tactics that negotiation parties can use to complete a negotiation process successfully when this occurs.  It is sometimes necessary for third parties to join a failed negotiation process to help negotiators resolve their differences.  Third parties tend to become involved when negotiators have exhausted all other options.  Lesson 11 presents the typical roles that third parties to negotiations can play.   

Grading Information

Assignment Points
Discussions 70 points
Individual Assignments 110 points
Team Assignments 70 points
Total: 250 points

Grading Scale
A 90% - 100%
B 80% - 89%
C 70% - 79%
D 60% - 69%
F 0% - 59%


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