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Chapter 14 Surprises and New Paths on the Journey to Developing Online Mediation Training

From the book Volume I Contemporary Trends in Conflict and Communication

  • Andrea Hartmann-Piraudeau


The COVID-19 pandemic and its short-term impact on mediator training is the topic of this chapter. It describes the experiences of a mediation training institute in Europe (Germany) in adapting their training format during the pandemic, when on-site events were no longer possible. The new online training was observed through intensive evaluations and comparison with the on-site training. The results, which are surprising at first glance, show that participants rated the online training better than the identical face-to-face training despite initial scepticism. Hybrid formats are also included in the evaluation. The results indicate that there are advantages and disadvantages of each training format. Personal contact and coffee break conversations are missed in the online classes, while advantages to learning online included better focus on content and structure. One of the most important findings was that mediators trained online felt confident to mediate online after the training, but also indicated that they felt confident to mediate on-site. This was in contrast to those trained on-site, who felt confident to mediate on-site but were not overwhelmingly confident to mediate online. The task for the future is to combine the advantages of both formats and initial thoughts are presented here.

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