Contract Management

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Program Overview

Our Contract Management certificate program is designed to provide working professionals with the hard skills necessary to manage every aspect of the contracting process. Contracts are the fabric of the modern world. The ability to manage contracts from conception to completion is an invaluable skill for any government organization, business or ambitious professional.

Students in this program learn to design and modify contracts and to effectively manage existing contracts and contracting relationships. Students will be prepared to understand the complex legal and financial aspects of contracts. Advance your contract negotiation skills as you learn how to actively negotiate contracts from both the buyer and seller perspective.


Introduction to Contract Law

This course delivers an overview of contracting functions and serves as a foundation for other courses. Topics include:

  • Sources of law (Washington Common, UCC, Equity Law)
  • Agency theory for employees, contractors, suppliers
  • Procurement of goods (Uniform Commercial Code-UCC)
  • Contract formation; elements of a contract
  • Contract performance and remedies
  • Intellectual property
  • Government regulation and contracts
  • Commercial torts including libel, privacy, commercial interference
  • Miscellaneous issues including warranties, bids, licenses, leases

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Public and Private Contracting

This course provides students a comprehensive overview of private sector, federal, state and local government contracts. Topics include:

  • Federal acquisition regulations
  • Federal procedures
  • State procedures and regulations
  • Local procedures and regulations
  • Writing effective contract terms and conditions

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Negotiation Skills

This course guides students through the study of the contract negotiation process. Topics include:

  • Pre-negotiation planning
  • Fact-finding and strategic planning
  • Setting objectives
  • Tactics in negotiations
  • Documentation

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Contract Drafting

This course provides an overview of contract drafting principles and legal remedies. Course includes hands-on experience drafting, revising and managing contracts. Topics include:

  • Elements of a contract
  • Contract formation
  • Contract drafting principles
  • Contract interpretation

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Changes, Terminations and Claims

This course delivers a comprehensive review of what happens with contracts in the critical stages once they are initiated, but before they are fulfilled. Topics include:

  • Change clauses and formal change orders
  • Constructive changes
  • Notice requirements
  • Delays
  • Pricing of adjustments
  • Default and convenience terminations
  • Disputes

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International Contracting and Special Topics

Students in the course will receive detailed examination of international contracting practices and their impact to business and government. Topics include:

  • Introduction to the role of contracts in international business
  • Forms of contracts – terms and conditions
  • Special contents for international contracts
  • Negotiations
  • Cultural aspects in contracting
  • Drafting
  • Enforcement of international contract provisions
  • Dispute resolution

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Who would benefit from this program?

The growing profession of contract management is covered, including a wide range of job functions in the complex business of procurement and contracting.

  • Contract professionals who deal with commercial and government organizations and wish to deepen their knowledge to further advance in their careers
  • Administrative and operational staff personnel, procurement specialists, contract administrators, vendor managers, auditors and paralegals
  • Individuals who wish to enter professions that require contract management skills
  • Professionals who regularly deal with contractors, suppliers or contracts

Program Schedule

Term Course Dates Time
Fall Introduction to Contract Law Tue 09/17/2019 - 10/22/2019 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Fall Public and Private Contracting Tue 11/05/2019 - 12/10/2019 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Winter Negotiation Skills Tue 01/07/2020 - 02/11/2020 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Winter Contract Drafting Tue 02/18/2020 - 03/24/2020 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Spring Changes, Terminations and Claims Tue 03/31/2020 - 05/12/2020 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Spring International Contracting and Special Topics Thu 05/21/2020 - 06/17/2020 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Recommended Qualifications

No application required.

Two years of college or one year of contract work experience recommended.

Open Enrollment

Unique to UW Tacoma is the ability to start a certificate with any course in the program - whether it starts Fall Term, Winter Term or Spring Term. You have two years from the start of your first course to complete the certificate program. Upon successful completion of all program requirements, participants earn a Certificate in Contract Management from the University of Washington Tacoma and 105 hours or 10.50 Continuing Education Units (CEUs). Participants must meet the minimum standard of 80% for attendance and completion of coursework.