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Certificate in Family Mediation

Certificate in Family Mediation

Gain the skills and experience to confidently mediate family conflict

Direct Registration

The next session of Family Mediation starts in the Intensive format on June 6, 2022. Please contact a Continuing Studies Advisor if you wish to join the wait list for the Part-Time offering in the Fall.


COVID-19 Updates and changes to program delivery. More information >

Join Ontario’s only university-level family mediation program and develop the skills and experience you need to mediate conflict, affect positive change in the lives of children and adults, and help families enduring difficult times move forward collaboratively.

What is Family Mediation?

Family Mediation is the practice of helping families in conflict work together to determine solutions that are amicable for all parties. As a confident and experienced family mediator, you will be helping families resolve conflict in a practical, safe, and positive manner, rather than through the adversarial and often costly alternative of litigation.

The Certificate in Family Mediation prepares you to work closely with families in conflict to help them work through disputes, identify fair and reasonable solutions, and strengthen their relationships.

What you will learn

To ensure you have the skills and knowledge to facilitate the best possible outcomes for families, you will learn first-hand from certified and practising industry-expert coaches and instructors who regularly encounter the types of interpersonal challenges that result from family disputes.

Your instructors will guide you through a series of dynamic, experiential learning opportunities, including role-playing sessions, which will allow you to develop your mediation skills and competencies, and improve your confidence as a new practitioner.

Program Benefits

This program fulfills the training requirements for the Accredited Family Mediator (AccFM) designation with the Ontario Association for Family Mediation—the largest accreditor of Ontario family mediators.

Graduates of this certificate are also able to fulfill the family mediation training requirement to pursue the Certified Specialist in Family Mediation (FDRP Med) designation through the Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario upon completion of 9 additional hours of training in family law, which is offered by FDRIO to York grads at no cost.

OSAP-eligible format offered

Part-Time Program:
Format: Part-Time
Delivery: Live online classes and coaching sessions (12 weekends, Sat & Sun 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM)
Program Length: 6 months
Term Starts: Fall, Winter

Summer Intensive Program:
Format: Intensive
Delivery: Live online classes and coaching sessions (4 days per week 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM)
Program Length: 6 weeks
Term Starts: Summer

To review the detailed schedule for the Part-Time and Intensive delivery formats, please click here for the “Enrol” tab and then select “Course Details +” .

Introducing Live Online Learning

To make our programming even more accessible, and to ensure the safety of students and instructors, we are now offering the in-class course components for professional programs completely online.

Instructors in the Certificate in Family Mediation all possess industry experience
with companies such as
Blue Hills Child and Family Services, Ontario College of Social Workers, Ontario Association of Family Mediators, and ADR Institute of Ontario’s Family Section.

Career Potential

Upon graduating from York’s program, you will have the practical experience, emotional intelligence, and expertise to help guide families through conflict safely and respectfully, reduce their emotional stress, ensure an equal voice to all parties, and help form lasting agreements. While many students in this program are Lawyers, Paralegals and Social Workers, many others come from a variety of fields that interact with families, including but not limited to:

  • Community, Social and Human Services
  • Teaching, Education Administration, School Boards
  • Health Care, Patient Services
  • Psychology, Counselling, Therapy, Coaching
  • Mediation, Arbitration
  • Newcomer Services
  • Faith Services, Ministry
  • Child Protection, Parenting Coordination
  • Law Enforcement, Corrections
  • Government (Municipalities, Ministries, Service Canada)
Professional Associations

Family Mediation is an unregulated field, meaning that a designation as an Accredited Family Mediator is not required in order to practice.

If you choose to pursue a professional designation in this field upon completion of the Certificate, the School of Continuing Studies at York University is an approved training provider with both the Ontario Association for Family Mediation (OAFM) and the Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario (FDRIO).

York University’s Family Mediation Certificate meets the training requirements for the Accredited Family Mediator (AccFM) designation with OAFM – the largest accrediting body for Family Mediators in Ontario. Our graduates are also able to fulfill the training requirement to pursue the Certified Specialist in Family Mediation (FDRP Med) designation through FDRIO upon completion of 9 additional optional hours of training in family law, which is offered by FDRIO to York graduates at no cost.

Please be advised that to achieve the AccFM or the FDRP you will need to meet additional requirements stipulated by OAFM and FDRIO which include but may not be limited to education requirements, professional experience, and completion of an internship.

For those interested in pursuing the AccFM and/or FDRP Med designations, please be advised that it is the students’ responsibility to comprehensively review, understand and fulfill all necessary accreditation requirements. More information can be found on the OAFM and FDRIO websites. Should you have questions about any part of this process, please contact the OAFM at 1-844-989-3026 or, or contact FDRIO at (647) 800-0084 or

Who should take this program?

The Certificate in Family Mediation is well suited for anyone currently working in, or considering undertaking, a role related to family conflict. The Certificate would also benefit anyone seeking  formal certification to enhance and validate their competency in this area. This program offers advanced mediation skills that can be applied to fields like Ontario family court appointed mediation, family mediation and negotiation, social work, and health care services.

Please note that for students who may wish to go on to pursue an optional professional designation in family mediation with the Ontario Association for Family Mediation (OAFM) or the Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario (FDRIO), educational requirements including but not limited to an undergraduate degree or college diploma may apply. More information can be found on the OAFM and FDRIO websites.

Enrolment Requirements

The Certificate in Family Mediation is a direct registration program. No application process is required; simply enrol in the session of your choice to get started.

How Family Mediation has Changed Dramatically Since the COVID-19 Crisis.

Delivery Format

The Certificate in Family Mediation is offered in two formats – part-time and intensive.  Please click here to learn more about the intensive format.

Part-Time – (6 months)

The part-time offering is the same program as the intensive offering, except it is offered on occasional weekends (Saturday and Sunday) over a period of 6 months. This format is best suited to working professionals to allow students to balance multiple commitments and priorities.

Courses are currently offered Live Online via Zoom due to COVID-19 at a regularly scheduled day and time. Students and instructors will gather to participate in active learning activities, engage in hands-on role play, share their learnings in an interactive format and hear from guest speakers. Please view our Live Online video to learn more about this format.

Courses are scheduled to run on Saturday and Sunday from 9:00am to 3:00pm, and attendance is mandatory. Classes are typically held every other weekend, however there are some variations in this schedule to accommodate statutory and major holidays. To view the detailed schedule, please select the ““Enrol” tab and click on “Course Details +”


CSFM1000 Family Mediation Fundamentals

Participants will learn about the nature of conflict and conflict management, alternative dispute resolution (ADR) processes, negotiation with a focus on the interest-based negotiation model developed by the Harvard Program on Negotiation, and Mediation with an emphasis on facilitative mediation as applied in a family mediation context.

CSFM1020 Family Law

Participants will learn about the law-making systems in place in Canada, the legislative jurisdiction over family law, and the family justice system in Ontario. They will learn of the law pertaining to custody of and access to children, child support, spousal support, and property equalization and division. Participants learn how to search online for legislation, regulations, and reported decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada and the Ontario Court of Appeal. They will review statutory and case law. The instructor will demonstrate the use of computer software to determine potential financial support and property outcomes.

CSFM1010 Assessing and Screening for Domestic Violence

This course covers essential elements within and throughout the family mediation process that all family mediators must be fully attuned to. The instructor will inform participants about domestic violence and power imbalance as phenomena that are characteristic of many families and how to screen and assess readiness and appropriateness for mediation. The instructor will provide participants with a screening instrument and they will role-play its application to safety planning within the context of family mediation. A variety of learning modalities are used including lecture, group discussions, exercises, and role-play.

CSFM1030 Family Relations

The course in Screening for Domestic Violence and Power Imbalance informs participants of an essential element of the family mediation process required by all of the principal family mediation organizations. The instructor will inform the participants about domestic violence and power imbalance as phenomena that are characteristic of many families. The instructor will provide them with a screening instrument and they will role-play its application. The instructor will review the impact of what participants learn through screening, in particular, whether mediation is appropriate, and if so, those measures a mediator can take to ensure that he or she provides a safe environment. A variety of learning modalities are used including lecture, demonstrations interactive experiential activities, and role-play.

CSFM1040 Advanced Family Mediation

This course is an experiential application of the skills learned throughout the Family Mediation Certificate Program. The trainer will combine lecture along with interactive learning activities including role-play to cover topics such as mobility, intergenerational issues, dealing with impasse, conflict analysis, unconscious and implicit bias, cultural fluency, working with high-conflict behaviors, management of multiparty situations, drafting, and process design to address power imbalance. The course will include an overall comprehensive look at the mediation process and deepening of the mediator experience will be explored through reflective practice.

  1. CSFM1000 Family Mediation Fundamentals
  2. CSFM1020 Family Law
  3. CSFM1010 Assessing and Screening for Domestic Violence
  4. CSFM1030 Family Relations
  5. CSFM1040 Advanced Family Mediation


Anisa Ali photo

Anisa Ali


Kavita Bhagat photo

Kavita Bhagat


Neeraj Goel photo

Neeraj Goel


Michelle Hayes

B.S.W., M.S.W., R.S.W., AccFM, D.CPsych(s)

Archana Medhekar photo

Archana Medhekar


Mary Anne Popsecu photo

Mary-Anne Popescu



Candice Bernard photo

Candice Bernard

BA (Hons), JD, LL.M, ACC.FM

Pam Broley photo

Pamela Broley

ED.D., C.Psych, ACC.FM

Gail Brochu photo

Gail Brochu


Tiago Campos photo

Tiago Campos


Jim Doxtdator photo

Jim Doxtdator


Mardi Edelstein

BA (Hons), Q.MED, ACC.FM

Gregg Fenten image

Gregg Fenten


Hayley Glaholt photo

Hayley Glaholt

Ph.D., M.Sc., ACC.FM

Sina Hariri photo

Sina Hariri


Fareeha Khalid photo

Fareeha Khalid


Kam Lovel photo

Kam Lovel


Jared Norton photo

Jared Norton


Jonathan image

Jonathan Paynter


Angela Pickard photo

Angela Pickard


Sandra Southwind photo

Sandra Southwind


Borzou image

Borzou Tabrizi


Trish Thomas photo

Trish Thomas


Webinars & Events

Certificate in Family Mediation (Intensive)

Summer 2022

(Live Online Classes)

Course Details +


Policies & More Information

Technology Requirements for Remote/Online Courses

Please review the technology and software requirements you will need to access our courses remotely.

Transfer Credit & Course Exemption Policy – Family Mediation Certificate

York University’s Certificate in Family Mediation will consider the following course exemptions:

CSFM1020 Family Law: Practicing family lawyers may be exempt if requested before program start.

CSFM1030 Family Relations: Registered Social Workers with extensive and recent training and experience with families may be exempt if requested before program start.

Please be advised that requests for exemption must be sent to before the start of the first course in the program, being CSFM1000 Family Mediation Fundamentals. Exemption requests received after this date will not be considered.

Course Exemption

Please review the requirements from OAFM (the Ontario Associate for Family Mediation) and FDRIO (the Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario) when considering an exemption request. Please note that these requirements for exemption will apply at the time when you apply for your accreditation.



As CSFM1020-Family Law and CSFM1030-Family Relations are official components of this accredited program, should a student wish to pursue an exemption, it is the full responsibility of the student to confirm with OAFM, FDRIO or the accrediting body for any other designation that the student may wish to pursue that the criteria for the designation at the time of application will still be met. York University School of Continuing Studies bears no responsibility in this respect.

Attendance Policy – Family Mediation Certificate

Please note that due to the accelerated nature of the Family Mediation Certificate, attendance is of paramount importance. In order to be eligible to receive the Certificate, full attendance and participation is necessary. This includes but is not limited to punctuality and arriving for class on time, remaining present for the duration of every class, responding when called upon, keeping your camera turned on during Zoom classes, and consistently participating actively and meaningfully each day.

In the event that you are unable to attend class, please email your instructor at the earliest opportunity, along with the SCS Office at Valid documentation for any absences must be provided in a timely manner. Assuming that valid documentation is provided and approved by the Instructor and/or Administration, the student may be provided an extra assignment to complete if it is determined that the learning outcomes can still be achieved.

Please be advised that due to the accelerated delivery model of this Certificate, should a student miss more than one class in a course, the entirety of the course will need to be repeated at some future date. Hands-on practice is an essential component of the Family Mediation Certificate and therefore, should a student miss part or all of a coaching session for any reason, the student may be required to make up the entirety of that coaching session or the entirety of the course in a future offering. These determinations will be reached by the Instructor in advisement with the Administration. If there is not sufficient documentation to justify the absence(s), the course make-up will be at the student’s expense.

Contact Us

Ask us anything about this program and we’ll get back to you within 2 business days.