Teaching and Learning Mediation
Where competence depends on attitudes, we have to ask how it is possible to establish a way of thinking in mediator’s mind. Competence is knowledge, experience and skill. How can we teach and lern it?
The knowledge about mediation should respect interdisciplinarity of the issues. In mediation disciplines like law, psychology, sociology, pedagogy, philosophy and more meet on the same eye level. A mediator needs to know all of that on a level, which makes the source profession irrelevant, if he wants to offer professional work.
Mediation is life long learning. Though conflicts have a common structure they are different like people are. A professional mediator needs an instinct about mediation and he needs to implement the way of mediative thinking. A lot of practical experience is a must to get there.
Knowledge and experience is not enough, if a mediator dosen’t know how to use it in a proper way. Skills help him to ask the right questions in the right moment and do do the right things in a right way. A mediator needs to know his resources and his limits.
If understanding is the mean of mediation, mediator’s competences are defined by the way and the depth of his abilities to understand others, problems and situations.
Beyond understanding ans as a part of it, the ability to stand and deal with complexity is an important skill of mediators. They need to understand not just facts but all the dimensions of complexity humans and cases are providing to them. Our Star-Mediators are rewarded not just by our brand but also by a best international mediators award.
Education in mediation is not harmonised over the countries. We find training programs with less than 60 hours (UK and Latvia), 120 hours (Germany) and others with more than 360 hours (Austria) and academic degrees with more than 1000 hours, if one wants becoming a Master of Mediation.
The content differs as well. Not every training is able to deal with all kinds and styles of mediation. Many are limited on mediation, though a mediator needs to know almost every ADR procedure in oder to offer good services in conflict resolution.
An excellent training brings volume and quality in a line. There is a theory about mediation available, measuring the knowledge to be taught. It is consistent to practical exercises and role plays. Presence and far distance elements are enhancing each other as well as different media and didactic approaches help to cover the complexity of mediation.