The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2020
Course code



10 units


6000 level

Course handbook


This course aims to equip students with a mastery of communication skills to ensure they are excellent communicators and effective professionals, by focusing on high-conflict situations. Law is a discipline that involves conflict. Indeed, most business or professional settings involve some degree of conflict. Students will focus on high-conflict personality types, exploring the common features of this personality, and practice strategies about how to effectively communicate and handle people with high-conflict personalities. The dynamics of high-conflict situations faced in professional practice will be analysed, equipping students with the ability to identify high-conflict situations and determine the necessary approach required. Students will gain knowledge and skills through role plays, including client interviewing and coaching, mediation in high-conflict situations, managing high-conflict legal and workplace disputes, and implementing strategies to reduce conflict in organisational systems. This course will ensure our students have an advantage over other professionals and allow them to succeed and thrive in adverse legal and business situations.

Availability2020 Course Timetables

Newcastle City Precinct

  • Trimester 3 - 2020

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding of personality traits common to people with high-conflict personalities and apply strategies to effectively manage situations involving these people

2. Implement strategies to manage high-conflict situations whilst effectively collaborating and maintaining professional standards

3. Analyse high-conflict situations, including court hearings, meetings, and conferences.

4. Utilise effective communication skills in potential high-conflict situations, such as interviewing or coaching clients, collaborating with other professionals, and when involved in meetings or conferences.

5. Conduct research into high-conflict dispute resolution practices


The content in this course includes the following topics:

  1. Identifying high-conflict personalities
  2. Analysing and managing high-conflict situations
  3. Effective client interviewing and coaching
  4. High-conflict role plays
  5. Reducing conflict in organisational systems

Assessment items

Participation: Class Participation

Journal: Reflective Journal

Written Assignment: Research Assignment

Contact hours

Newcastle City Precinct


Online 36 hour(s) per Term Full Term

This approach provides the opportunity for the instructor to explain a large amount of information on this new subject and for students to ask questions and discuss the relevance of this information to their own professional and life experience.