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National Environmental Policy Act

Graduate Certificate

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) graduate certificate looks at the major laws, regulations, and policies that encompass environmental programs and projects in the U.S. This online certificate is specific to the theory and practice of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). You will gain an understanding of the legal framework of NEPA, its legislative history and intent, and the Council of Environmental Quality implementation of this law.

The primary focus will be on gaining hands-on experience preparing original NEPA compliance documents. You will also learn to critically review proposed projects presented in categorical exclusions, environmental assessments, and environmental impacts statements, and analyze environmental impacts of the proposed activities.

Program Courses

The curriculum for this online certificate is reviewed by an advisory council of industry experts for relevancy to today’s marketplace. Course topics include:

  • Environmental policies, regulations, and laws
  • Legislative background and history of the NEPA
  • Significant case law studies
  • Environmental conflict resolution
  • Environmental impact analysis
  • Creation of environmental impact statements

View all courses.

Program Objectives

In addition to the institutional and general learning objectives, graduates of this program are expected to achieve these learning outcomes:

  • Analyze the environmental compliance process as stated in the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (as amended) and Council on Environmental Quality Guidelines.
  • Evaluate significant NEPA case law and legal challenges/requirements.
  • Analyze environmental impact documents to identify strengths and weaknesses, legal soundness, and adequacy of environmental impacts of the proposed major federal action.
  • Apply appropriate EA/EIS analytical methodologies.
  • Evaluate approaches to mitigate conflict in public participation efforts (e.g., National Environmental Policy Act scoping and public comment processes).
  • Prepare environmental impact assessment documents.

Degree at a Glance

Admission Requirements

  • All AMU graduate programs require you to have earned a minimum of a bachelor’s degree from an institution whose accreditation is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
  • If you have a non-U.S. transcript, please view our International Admissions page for more information.
  • There is no fee to complete the AMU admission application. View steps to apply.  

Need help?

Selecting the right program to meet your educational goals is a key step in ensuring a successful outcome. If you are unsure of which program to choose, or need more information, please contact an AMU admissions representative at 877-777-9081 or info@apus.edu.


Graduate Tuition Rates 

Per credit hour: $350 | $325 with military grant*

View Tuition and Fees Details  

*To help minimize out-of-pocket costs, AMU offers a tuition grant for U.S. active-duty servicemembers, Guard, Reserve, military spouses and dependents, and veterans. See all military-affiliated student benefits.

Paying for School

Because our university is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), (the same as the Ohio State University, Univ. of Chicago, and U.S. Air Force Academy, to name a few), we can accept the following forms of financial aid and payments:

Ways to Save

Transfer Credits 

Accelerate your degree completion by taking full advantage of our transfer credit options, including credit for your previous college courses, military service schools, American Council on Education (ACE) and College Level Examination Program (CLEP) tests, and prior learning experiences.  

Employer Contributions

AMU has educational partnerships with many employers and associations. Be sure to accurately enter your employer information when you complete our admissions application. Your employer might also offer a tuition reimbursement plan as one of your benefits.