Professional Judgment

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Class starts: April 4, 2016

Cost: $299 per registrant (members and non-members)



This course will provide the learner with a comprehensive review of the concept of professional judgment. The course will examine the guiding principles for the use of professional judgment and explore its impact on student eligibility and financial assistance. A credential is provided after successfully completing and passing the credential test, which is available at the conclusion of the course and included in your course fee.

NASFAA University courses are 100% online with an asynchronous focus, meaning the individual attendee can log on anytime/anyplace (assuming they have Internet access) and participate in course requirements – naturally there are due dates they will need to adhere to, i.e. weekly assignments that must be completed. There are also weekly synchronous class meetings held one day per week at 2pm ET. However, these “live” classes are optional and recorded for on-demand viewing by the course attendee. While there will be no grade reductions for students that do not attend these live classes, we do encourage attendance to due to the highly collaborative nature of the courses.

As a participant of this course you will be asked to:

  • Review educational presentations
  • Complete learning assignments and quizzes
  • Participate in online discussions
  • Collaborate with other financial aid administrators  


  • Week 1: The Underlying concepts of Professional judgment /Dependency status
  • Week 2: Underlying concepts of need analysis
  • Week 3 Need analysis/ Cost of attendance
  • Week 4: Direct Loans/Satisfactory Progress

Course Scenario-Based Learning Video Example

Below is an example of one of the scenario-based lesson videos made available to attendees each week. Learn how you should handle these complicated and often unique situations to determine if professional judgment is warranted, what documentation you should collect, and the important adjustments you might need to make to remain compliant.

Course Facilitators

Amanda SharpAmanda Sharp is the Online Instruction Manager at the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA). Amanda joined NASFAA in 2013. Her primary responsibilities at NASFAA involve the management of NASFAA's online instruction programs including NASFAA webinars, NASFAA-U, and NASFAA Learning Bytes. In addition to those duties, she also takes part in updating NASFAA Student Aid Index, NASFAA publications, writing and presenting NASFAA training materials and webinars, instructing facilitated online courses, and responding to questions regarding regulatory issues through NASFAA’s AskRegs program. Amanda received both her bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from the University of North Alabama. Amanda began her career in financial aid in 2007 at the University of North Alabama.

Michael KutcherMichael Kutcher is an instructor with the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators. He has specialized in training financial aid counselors in the fundamentals of Title IV financial aid for the past 5 years. Prior to joining NASFAA, Michael was an Assistant Director of Student Services and Outreach with the University of Maryland University College. He was responsible for supervising a team of financial aid counselors, developing business processing guides, and presenting training seminars on new rules and regulations published by the Department of Education.

Cancellation Policy

We limit our online class size to ensure that we provide an effective, collaborative learning environment where participants receive experience and attention they need. Requests to cancel must be sent to

By submitting your registration, you agree to the following cancellation schedule:

  • $25 cancellation fee before April 1, 2016
  • $50 cancellation fee April 1- 3, 2016 

If you do not cancel by 6:00 am ET April 4, 2016, you will be responsible for the full amount of the registration fee. Medical emergencies will be re-scheduled to another available course with a doctor’s note. 

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