A Primer on Federal Contracting

Updated for the Uniform Guidance.

NCURA is pleased to offer an online tutorial focused on contracting with the Federal government. Since federal contracts are very different from federal grants, we have developed a thorough overview of this complex process. As a primer, it is intended for those new to the federal contracting arena, or who have had very limited exposure. The course was designed around the following learning outcomes:

  • To understand the unique characteristics of federal contracts, their key elements, and how they differ from grants and cooperative agreements;
  • To understand the federal contracting process, including the roles and responsibilities of the principal players;
  • To identify the pertinent regulations guiding the federal contracting process, from application through closeout;
  • To introduce the fundamentals of federal contract negotiation;
  • To provide strategies for implementing and managing federal contracts, Pre-Award through Post-Award; and
  • To learn to recognize, assess, and manage the risks associated with federal contracts.

The tutorial will offer interactive learning activities as well as knowledge reviews for each lesson. The course will end with a multiple-choice final exam, and offers a downloadable certificate of completion for those who successfully pass the final exam (80% or higher). If you do not successfully pass the final, you have the option to retake the exam during your 10 week enrollment period.  

Start your tutorial at any time!  You will have 10 weeks from the first date that you access the tutorial to complete the course.

Students should expect to spend approximately 1-2 hours per lesson on the course material.

All lessons will be accessible online throughout the course. If you would like to print off the lesson text as a PDF please visit the Resources section within each lesson. Please note: This course does not have an audio component.

We recommend using Chrome, Firefox or Edge web browsers to view the tutorial.

Lesson 1: An Introduction to Federal Contracting

Lesson 2: The Contracting Process

Lesson 3: Types of Contracts

Lesson 4: Introduction to FAR

Lesson 5: The Contract Solicitation

Lesson 6: The Cost Proposal

Lesson 7: Contract Issues

Lesson 8: Advanced Contract Issues

Lesson 9: Contract Negotiation

Lesson 10: Contract Administration

Lesson 11: Third Party Agreements

Lesson 12: Contract Closeout

Lesson 13: Audits

Lesson 14: Summary/Review

A Primer on Federal Contracting is worth 21 clock hours and 2.1 CEU's. You will be able to print your certificate from this page after passing the final exam with a score of 80% or higher.

Includes one CEU certificate per registration. Group CEU requests are not available.