The Commercial Arbitration Program is recognized by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators as equivalent to the module “Introduction to International Arbitration.” This exemption will allow participants to apply for Associate membership with CIArb.

Accreditation for all states
will be applied for as requested for both programs

How to Apply

Online Application Form

Spring Session Starts:

Contact Information:

Center on International Commercial Arbitration
American University
Washington College of Law
4300 Nebraska Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20016

Susana Castiglione,
Assistant Director, Center on International Commercial Arbitration
Phone: 202-274-4321

Online Certificate Program in International Commercial Arbitration

The Program on International Commercial Arbitration focuses on the theoretical and practical knowledge needed to handle international commercial arbitral cases either as counsel or arbitrator, both from the substantive and procedural law standpoint.

and enforcement of arbitral awards by focusing on arbitration awards, court decisions in the area of arbitration, the interaction between national courts and international arbitral tribunals, national arbitration statutes, international arbitration treaties and the arbitral rules of leading international arbitration institutions.

Please click here to learn about: length of the programs and dedication; optional traditional face-to-face "seat time" in Washington, D.C.; who should apply; tuition; and program changes & withdrawals. The syllabus is available below.


To receive a Certificate, students must take and pass an exam for each program (48-hour take-home). A Certificate of Attendance will be presented to students who do not wish to take the exams. Participants will have a period of approximately 2 weeks to decide when to download the exams from the programs platforms.

Participants will learn:

Negotiation skills for agreeing on efficient arbitration clauses;
Legal writing skills for successful claims, responses, and other relevant pleadings;
Strategies to succeed in arbitration proceedings, including hearings;
Comparative legal approach to the recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards.
The Program is Directed by ProfessorHoracio A. Grigera Naón

Faculty includes:

Horacio A. Grigera Naón, Director, WCL Arbitration Center;
Jonathan C. Hamilton, Partner, White & Case LLP;
Dyalá Jiménez - Figueres, Principal, DJ Arbitraje;
Miguel López Forastier, Partner, Covington & Burling LLP;
Björn Arp, Fellow and Adjunct Prof., WCL Arbitration Center;
Estefanía San Juan, Associate, White & Case LLP; and
Francisco Jijón, Associate, White & Case LLP;

Syllabus: International Commercial Arbitration

Module 1
Introduction to International Commercial Arbitration

1. What is International Commercial Arbitration?
2. Characteristics of “Arbitration”
      A. Arbitration is a Dispute Settlement Mechanism
      B. Agreement of the Parties
      C. Private Procedure
      D. Arbitral Awards are Binding upon the Parties
3. Meaning of “International”
4. Meaning of “Commercial”

Module 2
International Commercial Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
1. Institutional and Ad Hoc International Commercial Arbitration
      A. Institutional Arbitration
      B. Ad Hoc Arbitration
2. Conciliation and Mediation
3. Other forms of ADR

Module 3
From Agreement to Clause
1. Autonomy of the Arbitration Agreement
      A. What is an Arbitration Agreement?
      B. Autonomy or Separability
2. Kompetenz-Kompetenz of the Arbitration Agreement
3. Formation and Validity of the Arbitration Agreement
      A. Agreement Must Stem from Mutual Consent
      B. Legal Capacity of the Parties
      C. Written Agreement
      D. Agreement Must Refer to a Defined Legal Relationship
      E. Arbitrability
4. Drafting an Arbitration Clause
      A. General Considerations about Drafting an Arbitration Clause
      B. Some Particular Issues to Consider when Drafting an Arbitration Agreement

Module 4
The Arbitral Tribunal
1. The Arbitrator and the Arbitral Tribunal
2. Appointment of Arbitrators
      A. By the Parties
      B. By an Appointing Authority Established by the Parties
      C. By an Arbitral Institution
 3. Appeal against the Arbitrators and Replacement of Arbitrators
 4. Rights and Responsibilities of Arbitrators

Module 5
The Arbitral Proceeding
1. Applicable rules
2. Initiation of the procedure
3. The organization of the procedure: allegations and evidence
4. Multi-Party Arbitration
5. The arbitral award

Module 6
Provisional Measures
1. Types of provisional measures
2. The competent authority: the arbitral tribunal or the court of justice
3. Procedure applicable to provisional measures
4. Enforcement of provisional measures

Module 7
The Law Applicable to the Merits
1. The principles applicable to the determination of the law applicable to the merits
2. International public policy and other mandatory rules
3. Questions related to the choice of forum
4. The determination of the applicable law in case of absence of choice of forum by the parties

Module 8
Setting Aside of the Award
1. Introduction
2. Setting Aside in the UNCITRAL Model Law and National Arbitration Laws
3. Grounds for the Setting Aside of Arbitral Awards
4. Powers of the Courts of Justice in Setting Aside Procedures

Module 9
Recognition and Enforcement of Arbitration Agreements and Awards
1. Voluntary and Forced Execution of the Award
2. Scope of Application of the provisions of the NYC (Art. I)
3. The Recognition and Enforcement of Arbitration Agreements (Art. II)
4. Referral by a Court to Arbitration (Art. II.3)
5. Enforcement (Art. III)
6. The Request for Recognition and Enforcement: Formal Requirements (Art. IV)
7. The Request for Recognition and Enforcement: Grounds for Rejection (Art. V)