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The Art of Conflict Management

Equip yourself with the skills to handle conflict in a constructive manner with this course that teaches practical tips, tools, and techniques anyone can learn.
The Art of Conflict Management is rated 4.3 out of 5 by 65.
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Rated 5 out of 5 by from Unexpected surprise Very helpful to think in a subtle yet different ways to look forward and manage conflict more effective. Thank you Dr Deus
Date published: 2023-11-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great tips I really don't like to write requested reviews. I recommend saving money and getting to audio version.
Date published: 2022-05-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Gives hope for solving conflict. I enjoyed it very much and found the examples easy to follow, the reviews helpful and the outline of the course well done.
Date published: 2021-09-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Learned a lot! I just finished the course and must say, I thoroughly enjoyed Professor Dues' delivery. It's clear, concise and the examples shown of various conflicts were really helpful. The course guide is a gem. I would really like to see other courses by Professor Dues. PS. I really don't understand why anyone would give this course 1 star :/
Date published: 2020-09-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Made Me Think This course offers a lot to think about when dealing with conflict. Conflict is inevitable, and this course helps explain why it occurs and provides tools to self-analyze one's response to conflict. This course made me think a great deal about different situations I've encountered. I think it has made me at least a little more self-aware about the way that I manage conflict.
Date published: 2020-02-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very revealing The section on bad approaches to managing conflict turned on a lot of lights for me as far as understanding some recent problems at a volunteer organization. It alone was worth the cost of the course to me, and there was a lot more I liked.
Date published: 2020-01-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Win/win - not just a marketing term! Very good course on achieving win/win solutions rather than battles that result in lose a little/lose a little compromises. I've always instinctively known these were possible, but this course formulates the goal and techniques on how to get you there.
Date published: 2019-02-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Clear and helpful Well-presented history, clear applications of points that were contributed by various key researchers. Appropriate and helpful scenarios to illustrate how to apply these in differing situations, at work and in close personal relationships. Helpful in identifying wrong ways I have used for years.
Date published: 2019-01-28
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Improve and enhance the way you handle conflict in your professional and personal life with The Art of Conflict Management: Achieving Solutions for Life, Work, and Beyond. These 24 lectures by award-winning Professor Michael Dues are filled with practical tips, tools, and techniques&;amp;-all of which draw on groundbreaking research and strategies rooted in the "win-win" model that has dominated this exciting field for the past six decades.


Michael Dues

There really are better ways to handle conflict. The Great Courses gave me an excellent way to explain these 'better ways' to a worldwide audience.


Indiana University
Dr. Michael Dues is Senior Lecturer in Communication at The University of Arizona, where he also served as head of the Department of Communication. The holder of an M.A. in American History from the University of Louisville and a Ph.D. in Communication and American Studies from Indiana University, Professor Dues has spent 40 years not only as an award-winning teacher and respected scholar, but also as a successful organizational consultant, working with both public and private organizations on the human aspects of management. Honored for consistently excellent teaching by both The University of Arizona and California State University, Sacramento, Professor Dues has also written widely for academic and trade publications. His books include Boxing Plato's Shadow: An Introduction to the Study of Human Communication and The Practice of Organizational Communication, both coauthored with his spouse, Mary Brown; and The Pursuit of Probable Truth: A Primer on Argument. He also served seven years as an ombudsman for The University of Arizona. In his work on conflict, he draws not only on academic studies but also on his broad experience as an administrator, a consultant, and a practitioner.

By This Professor

The Art of Conflict Management
The Art of Conflict Management


Why Conflict Management Matters

01: Why Conflict Management Matters

The study of conflict management has made enormous strides since the mid-20th century. In this introductory lecture, learn what conflict is, why it is inevitable even in successful relationships, and why dealing with it constructively is both essential and beneficial, whether in your business or personal life.

32 min
The Adversary System

02: The Adversary System

Recognition of conflict and its costs goes back to the philosophers of ancient Greece. Grasp both the advantages and disadvantages of the system they devised to cope with it, including the adversary system's underlying assumption that conflicts are inherently competitive, with resolutions requiring winners and losers.

31 min
Morton Deutsch and the Concept of Win-Win

03: Morton Deutsch and the Concept of Win-Win

Meet the founder of modern conflict management theory, whose research resulted in a far different approach than that envisioned from the adversarial perspective. His finding that most conflicts can, in fact, produce a "win" for both sides has dominated the field for the last 60 years....

31 min
Perception, Perspective, and Punctuation

04: Perception, Perspective, and Punctuation

Conflict arises not so much out of differences between parties, but in how those differences are perceived by each side. Gain fresh insight into the factors that shape those perceptions, including the critically important fundamental attribution error, of which just about everyone is guilty....

31 min
Managing Multiple and Conflicting Emotions

05: Managing Multiple and Conflicting Emotions

Emotions, even when powerfully felt, do not have to derail your attempts to manage or resolve a conflict. This lecture describes the role these "internal facts" play in any conflict and offers useful tools for recognizing and handling them in yourself and others.

28 min
Multiple, Complex, and Changing Goals

06: Multiple, Complex, and Changing Goals

Goals that appear simple on the surface actually have many layers, with each concealing different needs. Add a key skill to successfully managing conflict by learning to identify the multiple goals driving both parties.

29 min
Power-How Much We Need and How to Use It

07: Power-How Much We Need and How to Use It

Power is in play in every conflict, but its "advantage" is less than you may think. This discussion of the sources and uses of power reveals a valuable insight from recent research: that lasting resolutions are more likely when power is equally distributed....

32 min
Conflict Styles

08: Conflict Styles

An exploration of the five most common "default strategies," or styles, of conflict management upends a commonly held assumption. Compromise, it seems, is not the most effective conflict management strategy. It produces results far less desirable than the preferred strategy for producing "win-win" results, which is collaboration....

28 min
Dysfunctional Conflict Strategies

09: Dysfunctional Conflict Strategies

Dissect the rogue's gallery of strategies that should never become your ongoing conflict management style and that are best avoided unless they are the only viable alternatives. Delve into the damage that can be done through avoidance, withdrawal, imposition, triangulation, manipulation, absolute framing, payback, or compromise....

31 min
Principled Negotiation

10: Principled Negotiation

Explore the basic principles underlying the true "win-win" approach. These include understanding the importance of separating people from the problem; focusing on interests instead of positions; generating multiple options for mutual gain; and basing your choices on objective criteria.

30 min
Preparing and Arranging to Negotiate

11: Preparing and Arranging to Negotiate

Approaching a negotiation can be just as important as the negotiation itself. This lecture explains the steps you need to take in first recognizing whether the basic conditions for negotiation are present and then arranging for the actual negotiation.

31 min
Negotiating Conflict Resolutions

12: Negotiating Conflict Resolutions

Enhance your chances for success at the table by absorbing the essential "how-to" steps for conducting the negotiation, gaining a clear agreement, and following through-including the steps you should take when agreements are or aren't kept.

31 min
Listening in Conflict

13: Listening in Conflict

It's one of the most important skills you can have in your relationship tool kit, but it's also one in which many of us fall short. Learn the fundamentals of this demanding skill, including the key things you should focus on in discerning someone's real messages....

30 min
Dynamic Patterns in Close Relationships

14: Dynamic Patterns in Close Relationships

Dealing with conflict in your personal relationships, whether with friends, family, work colleagues, neighbors, or simply acquaintances, requires its own special set of skills. Gain vital insights into the conflict management styles that can sustain or damage those relationships.

32 min
Disruptions in Close Relationships

15: Disruptions in Close Relationships

There are steps you can take to avoid conflict in a close relationship or manage and resolve conflict when it does inevitably occur. However, when a destabilizing event-such as a serious illness-creates what is known as a critical communications context, the special insights offered here become even more important.

29 min
How Management Theories Affect Conflict

16: How Management Theories Affect Conflict

Explore the impact of several accepted theories of management to understand why the biggest losses to organizations don't come from major conflicts at all. Instead, they come from the accumulation of small, day-to-day ones.

31 min
The Manager's Role in Dealing with Conflict

17: The Manager's Role in Dealing with Conflict

Even when managers aren't actively involved in managing a conflict, their everyday actions help determine the frequency and seriousness of the conflicts that occur. Learn the steps managers need to know to create the best atmosphere possible for successful conflict management.

33 min
Getting Professional Help with Conflict

18: Getting Professional Help with Conflict

Several decades of focus on conflict management have led to a wide array of professional specialties, each devoted to different aspects of conflict management. Become familiar with the different skills of mediators, arbitrators, ombudsmen, counselors, and informal organizational "priests"-as well as when to call on them.

31 min
Helping Others Manage Conflict

19: Helping Others Manage Conflict

What should you do as a nonprofessional to help others resolve a conflict? And how can you best do so? This lecture offers suggestions on the best procedures to follow and the pitfalls you need to avoid.

33 min
Moral and Cultural Conflicts

20: Moral and Cultural Conflicts

Conflicts based on moral and cultural differences can seem the most intractable of all, beyond anyone's skills of resolution. Nevertheless, there are steps that can achieve positive and lasting progress. Grasp the essential principles of reframing the issues, fractionating them into resolvable pieces, and developing empathy and mutual trust between opposing sides....

30 min
Managing Moral Conflicts-Success Stories

21: Managing Moral Conflicts-Success Stories

See how the principles of the previous lecture are put into successful practice to resolve three notable conflicts long in the public eye. In particular, learn how they were used by President Jimmy Carter in the Camp David Accords and President Ronald Reagan in the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty talks.

30 min
Managing Conflict's Aftermath

22: Managing Conflict's Aftermath

Conflicts are rarely "over" when negotiations conclude, even when the results are successful. Gain insights into the concepts of acceptance, apology, amends, forgiveness, reconciliation, healing, and even the escalation that can follow in conflict's wake.

32 min
Teaching Our Children about Conflict

23: Teaching Our Children about Conflict

Some of the strongest advances in the study of conflict management have been in how to pass on what we have learned to the next generation. Examine the different ways children learn about conflict and what we are already doing to improve that process.

30 min
Conflict Management-A Success in Progress

24: Conflict Management-A Success in Progress

Compare what you've learned in this course to what was known about conflict and its management in 1950, before research really began in earnest. Conclude the course with 10 key takeaway points, each of which can be applied in your own life right now.

35 min