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April 8, 2022

Application Deadline

April 15, 2022


2022 NASPA Certificate Program in Student Affairs Law and Policy

Division/Group Events Civic Engagement Policy and Advocacy Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Public Policy Division AVP or "Number Two" Mid-Level Senior Level VP for Student Affairs

The NASPA Cerficiate Program in Student Affairs Law and Policy offers the only certificate program in the important area of law and policy tailored specifically for student affairs educators. This 23-hour, intensive residential program provides an opportunity for in-depth study to enhance student affairs professionals' knowledge and understanding of law and policy.

This is the only program of its type; and the only certificate program specifically recommended for members of NASPA, ASCA, and other student affairs-focused associations. Due to high interest, this program was expanded to include two cohorts. This year, we hope to be able to offer two cohorts again.

  • Cohort 1 will be June 20 - June 24, 2022
  • Cohort 2 will take place June 27 - July 3, 2022.

Applicants availability increase likelyhood of acceptance into the certificate program.



Presented By


NASPA and ACPA's Professional Competency Areas for Student Affairs Practitioners includes a defined and articulated competency area for law, policy and governance (LPG). NASPA is proud to offer an intensive {23} hour residential certificate program specifically designed to develop and enhance skills, attitudes and knowledge related to the articulated competencies endorsed by ACPA and NASPA in the LPG area of competency.

It is vital that university administrators appreciate and understand the critical legal and regulatory issues that impact their work.  A wide variety of student-affairs professionals - ranging from mid-level to senior leaders - will benefit from this program.  The program is designed to provide student-affairs professionals with information and skills to develop and enhance competency in LGP competency area.  

Led by Law and Policy professionals, the program will provide information and skill development to develop basic LGP competency in all identified categories and enhance or develop competency in many intermediate and advanced competency categories as well.  Moreover, the program will address various "hot topics," in higher education law as a context for developing competencies while ensuring that participants learn core legal concepts that will help them work through recurring issues. 


Conference Topics

Law and the Legal System
  • Importance of law to student-affairs professionals
  • The Facilitator Model
  • Types and sources of law
  • Overview of the legal system
  • Techniques for reading legal materials
  • Working with legal resources and electronic databases
  • Working with general or outside counsel
  • How law relates to policy
  • Sources of law and legal update
  • The litigation process
Private Law


  • Negligence (including alcohol and other drugs and suicide/self-injury)
  • Risk-management concepts
  • Insurance issues


  • Premises liability
  • Landlord-tenant


Public Law

Constitutional Law/Civil Rights Law

  • Free speech and expression
  • Religion on campus
  • Admissions
  • Diversity/multiculturalism
  • Academic freedom
  • Disability law
  • Due process:  student conduct and discipline

Criminal Law and Procedure

  • Basics of criminal law terminology, such as felony v. misdemeanor
  • Working with law enforcement
  • Search and seizure
  • Overview of processes such as arrest, charge, bail, plea
  • Impact of student arrest/conviction on campus processes

Administrative and Regulatory Law

  • Civil rights/employment/discrimination/safety
  • Clery Act and other key federal regulations
  • Title IX
  • Working with administrative agencies
Special Issues in Student Affairs Law and Policy
  • Mental health
  • Student injury and death
  • Student organizations and activities
  • Crisis management /Care teams
  •  Residential Life issues
  •  Hazing
  •  Greek Life issues

Application Submission

Please apply to join us at one of two possible sessions in Clearwater Beach, FL (June 20-24 or June 27 – July 1, 2022) to gain insight, appreciation, and understanding of the critical legal and regulatory issues that impact your work, as well as develop applicable skills to enhance your competency in law, policy, and governance. Your application must be submitted by April 8, 2022 to be considered.


`Registration as a member is based on individual membership status. If you are employed by a college or university that is an institutional member, you can join as an individual member at the $75 rate. This gives you the institute registration and a year of membership for less than the non-member registration fee. If your institution is NOT a member, then you coud join at the associate affiliate rate of $242 and then you can pay the individual member rate for conference registration. Visit the membership section of the NASPA website to learn about membership types.

For a comprehensive listing of NASPA registration policies, please visit this page.

 Registration Fees*
Regular Registration
March 28, 2022 - April 29, 2022
Late Registration
after April 29, 2022

NASPA Member
$2250 $2500
$2500  $2750 

*Successful applicants will be provided a registration link upon acceptance into the program. Registration does not include the price of the program hotel.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the interaction between law and policy in the higher education context and how to work with combined issues of law and policy.
  • Develop skills in how to find, read, analyze, and update cases, statutes, and administrative regulations and identify, articulate, and apply core legal rules and concepts relating to the practice of student affairs.
  • Develop basic skills in working with different types and sources of law, legal reasoning, legal structures related to institutions of higher education, and the U.S. legal system and describe legal concepts, issues, and rules succinctly and efficiently.
  • Develop effective strategies for working with legal counsel.
  • Demonstrate the ability to recognize and work with issues of tolerance, diversity, and inclusion from a law and policy perspective.
  • Develop the ability to identify and work with key features of appellate court decisions, statutes, and regulations that impact higher education. This includes demonstrating an ability to work with the “IRAC” heuristic and organizing legal and law‐like analysis.
  • Develop the ability to discuss and recognize key “facts” that are known, or must be discovered, that will augment or hinder their posture in contested situations.
  • Develop the ability to engage in constructive dialogue with others regarding contentious issues of law and policy. Respect for ideas of others that one does not personally accept is necessary to learn and conceptualize legal topics.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the appropriate and inappropriate use of law as a tool for dispute resolution and develop he ability to reason and communicate objectively regarding issues of law and policy. This includes the demonstrated ability to provide carefully reasoned elaboration for positions, opinions, and the like.

Past Participant Testimonials

See what past participants had to say about their experiences at the Certificate Program in Student Law and Policy: