ADR Externships

The ADR Externship Program through CNDR is for advanced dispute resolution students who want an in-depth practical learning experience.

Through the Center for Negotiation and Dispute Resolution (CNDR), students may participate in externship placements for credit. The Externship provides a valuable opportunity for experiential learning through research, process observation and assessment, written analysis, supervised assignments, and reflective learning in a real world setting. Learn more about taking the course, or supervising as a placement host.

About the Course

The ADR Externship allows students to work with dispute resolution professionals to see ADR and organizational processes and programs in operation.  Under the guidance of a placement supervisor, students take primary responsibility for ADR-related assignments, projects, and activities. Depending on the placement, students may have the opportunity to observe and participate in ADR processes, to attend meetings of practice groups, to engage in research and draft memoranda, program manuals, and protocols, to interact with parties, and to evaluate program efficacy.  Students must apply to and be accepted for the externship by the placement supervisor. The Externship requires students to meet high levels of professionalism in all aspects of their fieldwork.  Students must meet all work requirements set by the placement supervisor.

About the Instructor

The ADR Externship is currently overseen by the Center for Negotiation and Dispute Resolution (CNDR) at UC Law SF.

Questions? Please email CNDR.

Externship FAQ

Sample Placements

Some of the places UC Law SF students have externed:

  • San Francisco Superior Court
  • The California Mediation and Conciliation Service
  • SEEDS Community Resolution Center
  • Community Boards San Francisco
  • Arts Arbitration and Mediation Service at California Lawyers for the Arts
  • US District Court for the Northern District of California ADR Program
  • San Francisco ACCESS Program
  • United States Deptartent of Justice Community Relations Service
  • Alameda County Superior Court ADR Program

Best Practices For Placement Hosts

Several years ago, Bay Area law schools formed BACE, Bay Area Consortium on Externships. BACE has worked to develop joint evaluations and standards for the supervision of externs in their placements including the BACE Manual for Extern Supervisors. This manual has been developed with the participation of BACE member schools and reflects the ABA requirements for the conduct of externship programs.


The manual articulates the standards we expect our extern supervisors to follow and highlights best practices in extern supervision. We recognize and appreciate the demands on your time and understand that supervision of a law student adds to your duties and responsibilities.

The quality of a student’s experience is directly related to the quality of the supervision provided. Students in an effective externship will learn in at least four important areas:

  1. Improve their legal skills
  2. Increase their knowledge of a substantive area of the law
  3. Understand the mission and operation of a particular organization, government agency, court, or non-profit
  4. Assist law students in developing their professional identities