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Basics of Government Contracting, a flagship course of Federal Publications Seminars, is a comprehensive 3-day review of the entire federal procurement process, from start to finish, emphasizing the practical, the keys to success in today's contract world. This fundamental course covers, in critical point fashion, the key elements you need to function effectively in today's federal procurement world. Further, the course covers a comprehensive amount of ground in an easily digestible manner - in clear, concise terms you can swiftly apply to your individual work and operations.

Who should attend:

  • Newly hired professionals in all government contracting roles at all levels and all sizes of organizations
  • Businesses and organizations who are exploring or have acquired a government contract - either as a prime contractor or a subcontractor
  • Specialists who have been working in limited areas of procurement; those who have not had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the total picture
  • Experienced professionals needing an effective refresher, to be brought up to date on new rules, new procedures, new rights, and new remedies
  • Contracting officers, contract and subcontract administrators, program and project managers, accounting and finance professionals, general counsel and corporate and government attorneys, among others.
Click here for an in-depth course agenda.

Learning Objectives: 
After completing this course, you will be able to:
  • Know the historical context of federal acquisition
  • Recognize relevant statutes, laws and regulations in acquisition
  • Recognize the different contract types
  • Determine hierarchy of government structure related to acquisition and roles
  • Respond to an invitation for bids
  • Complete a basic bid proposal package
  • Understand bid deadlines and challenges
  • Prepare a basic proposal with all the correct elements
  • Respond to a bid protest 
  • Able to make an appeal if a dispute should arise
  • Understand the differences between termination types
  • Have basic knowledge on cost recovery and cost principles
Our instructors:
Our instructors are skilled professionals - many renowned for their work in the industry - who have the ability to explain clearly and to maintain the students' interest. They have the additional advantage of speaking from experience, since each is a specialist involved daily in procurement matters. Our instructors continually earn high marks for their ability to teach and knowledge they convey for both our courses and within their own careers.

Join the hundreds of other government contracting professionals who have honed their skills during this solid, fundamental course.
February 9-11, 2022
American Management Association
Arlington, VA
Travel Info
Standard: $1,400.00
Enhanced: $1,795.00
March 21-23, 2022
Hilton Orlando
Orlando, FL
Travel Info
Standard: $1,550.00
Enhanced: $1,945.00
April 4-6, 2022
Norris Conference Center - Dallas
Dallas, TX
Travel Info
Standard: $1,400.00
Enhanced: $1,795.00
May 2-4, 2022
Hyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine
La Jolla, CA
Travel Info
Standard: $1,550.00
Enhanced: $1,945.00
July 25-27, 2022
The Westin Hilton Head Island
Hilton Head Island, SC
Travel Info
Standard: $1,550.00
Enhanced: $1,945.00
September 12-14, 2022
The Flamingo Hotel
Las Vegas, NV
Travel Info
Standard: $1,550.00
Enhanced: $1,945.00
November 16-18, 2022
Hyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine
La Jolla, CA
Travel Info
Standard: $1,400.00
Enhanced: $1,795.00
December 5-7, 2022
American Management Association
Arlington, VA
Travel Info
Standard: $1,400.00
Enhanced: $1,795.00
Day 1
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Orlando, FL and Hilton Head, SC Government Contracts Weeks
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
La Jolla, CA and Las Vegas, NV Government Contracts Weeks
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
All Other Locations
Day 2
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Orlando, FL and Hilton Head, SC Government Contracts Weeks
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
La Jolla, CA and Las Vegas, NV Government Contracts Weeks
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
All Other Locations
Day 3
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
La Jolla, CA and Las Vegas, NV Government Contracts Weeks
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Orlando, FL and Hilton Head, SC Government Contracts Weeks
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
All Other Locations
  1. The Setting
    1. Legislative Branch
    2. Executive Branch
    3. Judicial Branch
    4. Regulations
      1. Federal Acquisition Regulation
      2. Agency regulation
      3. Deviations
    5. Purchasing Offices
    6. The Procurement Process
      1. Establishing requirements
      2. Procurement methods
      3. Soliciting sources
      4. Government representative activities
  2. Sealed Bidding
    1. Invitation for Bids
    2. Correcting IFB Deficiencies
    3. Bid Preparation
      1. Instructions to bidders
      2. The complete package
      3. Formulating price quotes
      4. Acknowledging amendments
      5. Aids outside bid package
    4. Bid Opening
      1. Procedures
      2. Late bids
    5. Eligibility For Award
      1. Bid responsiveness
      2. Responsibility of bidders
      3. Mistakes in bids
      4. Bid protests
    6. Issuance of Award
    7. Two-Step Sealed Bidding
  3. Competitive Negotiation
    1. Conditions Permitting Competitive Proposals
    2. Requests for Proposals or Quotations
    3. Response Preparation
    4. Timeliness of Response
    5. Written/Oral Discussions
    6. Best and Final Offers
    7. Contract Types
      1. Fixed price
      2. Cost reimbursement
      3. Other types
    8. Post Award Notice and Debriefing
    9. Protests
  4. Costs
    1. Cost Principles
      1. Applicability
      2. Allowability
      3. Reasonableness
    2. Cost Accounting Standards
      1. Applicability
      2. Exemptions and waivers
      3. Contractor obligations
    3. Defective Pricing
      1. Requirements
      2. Submitting certified data
      3. Government recovery for defective data
    4. Government Audit Rights
  5. Specifications
    1. Design vs. Performance
    2. Purpose
    3. Types
    4. Deviations and Waivers
    5. Standards and Descriptions
    6. Availability of Specifications and Standards
    7. Qualified Products
    8. Government Warranty of Specifications
    9. Impossibility of Performance
      1. Contract interpretation rules
      2. Assumption of risk
      3. Actual and practical impossibility
    10. Remedies for Specification Problems
  6. Inspections and Warranties
    1. The Inspection Process
    2. Inspection Clauses
    3. Government Inspection
    4. Contractor Inspection
    5. Rejection and Correction
    6. Acceptance
      1. Conclusiveness
      2. Implied acceptance
      3. Exceptions to conclusiveness
    7. Warranties
      1. Implied
      2. Express
      3. Effect of warranties
  7. Contract Changes
    1. Standard Clauses
      1. Fixed-price contracts
      2. Cost reimbursement contracts
    2. Authority for Changes
    3. Contractor Duty to Proceed
    4. Value Engineering Clauses
    5. Formal Change Orders
      1. Contractor proposed
      2. Government originated
      3. Issuing changes
    6. Constructive Changes
      1. Government acts
      2. Defective specifications
      3. Nondisclosure of vital information
      4. Construction acceleration
  8. Differing Site Conditions
    1. Standard Clause
    2. Notice
    3. Conditions Covered and Not Covered
    4. Site Availability
    5. Site Investigation Duty
    6. General Disclaimers
  9. Subcontract Basics
    1. Nature of Subcontracts
    2. Privity
    3. Subcontractor Remedies
      1. Disputes procedures
      2. Other procedures
    4. Government Control
  10. Terms and Conditions
    1. Influence of the UCC
    2. Effect of Government Clauses
    3. Subcontract Clauses
  11. Claims Before the Contracting Officer
    1. Assertion of Claims
    2. Certification Requirements
    3. Fraudulent Claims
    4. Final Decision
      1. Content and timing
      2. Importance
    5. Extraordinary Contractual Relief
      1. Types of relief
      2. Relief procedures
      3. Petitions and decisions
  12. Terminations for Default
    1. Nature of Default Termination
    2. Bases for Default
      1. Failure to timely perform or meet specifications
      2. Failure to make progress
      3. Failure to otherwise perform
    3. Incorrect Default Basis
    4. Excusable Delays
    5. Waiver of Delivery Date
    6. Contractor Liability
    7. Contesting Default Termination
  13. Terminations for Convenience
    1. Nature of Convenience Termination
    2. Methods of Termination
    3. Termination Procedures
    4. Contractor Recovery
      1. Procedures
      2. Limitations
      3. Cost principles
      4. Special termination costs
      5. Settlement expenses
      6. Subcontractor claims
      7. Profit
      8. Loss contracts
    5. Partial Terminations
  14. Delays and Suspensions
    1. Delay Under Default Clause
      1. Excusable delay concept
      2. Weather and labor delays
      3. Concurrent delays
    2. Suspension of Work Clause
      1. Affirmative suspensions
      2. Constructive suspensions
      3. Recoverable costs
      4. Notice requirements
  15. Liquidated Damages
    1. Standard Clause
    2. Enforceability Criteria
    3. Contractor Defenses
    4. Measuring Assessment Period
  16. The Disputes Process
    1. Contract Disputes Act Procedures
    2. Appealing Contracting Officer’s Decision
    3. Disputes Clause
    4. Disputes Path
    5. Contesting Award Decisions
  17. Appeals to Board of Contract Appeals
    1. Initial Steps
    2. Discovery and Subpoenas
    3. Alternative Proceedings
    4. Regular Hearings
  18. Federal Court Proceedings
    1. Federal Courts Improvement Act
    2. Claims Court Practice and Trials
    3. Appeals to Court of Appeals
    4. Court of Appeals Processes
  • Ethan Brown
    Associate Attorney, McCarter & English
    Ethan Brown has extensive experience advising defense, healthcare, construction, and technology companies on a variety of government contracting matters at the federal, state, and local levels, including teaming and subcontracting arrangements, regulatory compliance, small business contracting issue...
  • Michael Killham
    Experienced Corporate Counsel
    Michael A. Killham is a California attorney specializing in U.S. Government procurement and subcontracting support. He provides legal advice, training, and assistance concerning all aspects of federal and commercial contracting and fiscal law, including but not limited to subjects relating to Contra...
  • Jonathan Kosarin
    Associate Counsel, DoD Countering Terrorism Technical Support Office
    Jonathan H. Kosarin, Associate Counsel, Special Projects Division, is assigned to the Department of Defense Combatting Terrorism Technical Support Office. He has over 40 years’ experience in acquisition, government contracting, and fiscal law. Mr. Kosarin previously served as Assistant General...
  • Alexander Major
    Partner, McCarter & English, LLP
    Mr. Major is a partner and co-leader of the firm’s Government Contracts & Export Controls Practice Group. Mr. Major focuses his practice on federal procurement, cybersecurity liability and risk management, and litigation. A prolific author and thought leader in the area of cybersecurity, h...
  • Gene Pickarz
    Deputy Director, Acquisition Center of Excellence at the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)
    Gene Pickarz has spent over three decades as a contracting professional with assignments in both Government and Industry. He has served in contracting and acquisition positions in both the US and Europe with extensive experience in acquisition planning, government procurement, intellectual property,...
  • Franklin Turner
    Partner, McCarter & English
    Mr. Turner is a Partner and Co-Leader of the Government Contracts & Export Controls Practice Group. He is an innovative business lawyer with significant experience resolving complex government contracts issues for a broad array of companies – ranging from multinational Fortune 100 corporat...
  • Cara Wulf
    Associate, McCarter & English
    Cara Wulf is an associate in the Government Contracts & Global Trade practice group at McCarter & English. She focuses her practice on government contracts and regulations. She has extensive experience counseling clients regarding compliance with federal, state, and local public procurement...
See Individual Courses For Available Credits
Certificates of Completion are provided to all seminar participants who attend Federal Publications Seminars courses following the event, upon request.
CPE: Continuing Professional Education
Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge
Delivery Method: Group-Live Classroom
Federal Publications Seminars is affiliated with West Professional Development and is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website:
For more information regarding administrative policies such as refunds, cancellations and complaints, please contact Federal Publications Seminars at 888.494.3696.
CPE Hours
This program is eligible for: 19.5 (CPE) hours of credit
Program Level: Basic
Program Prerequisite: None
Advance Preparation: None
Method: Group-Live
CLP: Continuous Learning Points
Approved for CLP by Defense Acquisition University
Defense Acquisition Workforce members must acquire 80 Continuous Learning Points (CLP) every two years from the date of entry into the acquisition workforce for as long as the member remains in an acquisition position per DoD Instruction 5000.66. We will provide you with documentation of points awarded for completing the event.
CLP Hours
This program is eligible for: 17.0 (CLP) hours of credit
CLE: Continuing Legal Education
States have widely varying regulations regarding MCLE credit. LegalEdcenter is an approved provider in AL, AK, AR, CA, GA, IL, ME, MO, MS, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, UT, VA, VI, VT, WA, WI, and WV. Credit may be applied for in other jurisdictions on request and in accordance with state MCLE rules.
Please note that because some states are changing their policy on CLE reporting, you will need to fill out the request for credit from Federal Publications Seminars within 10 business days, or we may not be able to issue credits for the program.
CLE Hours
This program is eligible for: 16.5 (60 minutes), (50 minutes)
American Management Association
2345 Crystal Drive, Suite 200
Arlington, VA, 22202
Hotel & Room Block Info

Federal Publications Seminars doesn’t have a room block for this location.  However, ECTC offers special hotel rates at two nearby hotels: Hyatt Regency Crystal City; and Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel.

Hyatt Regency Crystal City

Click here to reserve using the AMA preferred rate. For AMA’s preferred rate enter corporate code 00433. 

Reagan National Airport
2799 Jefferson Davis Highway
Arlington, VA 22202
AMA Reservation Number 1-703-418-1234

Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel

Click here to reserve using the AMA preferred rate.

2800 South Potomac Avenue
Arlington, VA 22202
AMA Reservation Number 1-703-413-1300

General Information


Yellow & Blue Line – METRO Stop – Crystal City
From the METRO - AMA is 2 blocks east and 4 blocks south on Crystal Drive

Coffee (regular & decaf), tea and water will be served throughout the day with an afternoon snack (baked goods) break.  Breakfast and lunch are on your own.

Hilton Orlando
6001 Destination Parkway
Orlando, FL, 32819
Hotel & Room Block Info

There is a room block for this location. Rate is $259/night plus taxes. To make your reservations, click here. The deadline to make your room reservation by February 21, 2022. We will have a link (soon) to reserve a room online, if you prefer.

Group concessions are provided below for hotel guests:  

  • Complimentary Internet in Guest rooms
  • Complimentary Fitness Center access
  • 50% Discount on overnight Self-Parking Fees
General Information

Daily Resort Fee $35/night -Optional
OPTIONAL:  Attendees will have the option to purchase additional benefits a la carte. Daily resort fee, currently thirty five dollars ($35.00) per room, per night, plus applicable state and local tax, to cover the following:
·        15% discount at hotel restaurants and lounge (excludes Tropic’s Pool Bar & Grill and banquet events)
·        Equipment rental for recreational activities
·        10% discount on Eforea Spa services and merchandise
·        25% discount on poolside cabana rentals
·        Unlimited local, toll-free & domestic calls
·        Two I-Ride Trolley tickets daily ($10.00 value) – Guest will be able to redeem 2 passes per day from our Lobby Concierge team


Continental breakfast, buffet lunch, and an afternoon snack will be served.

Hyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine
3777 La Jolla Village Drive
La Jolla, CA, 92122
Hotel & Room Block Info

There is a room block for this location. Rate is $239/night plus taxes. To make your reservations, click here.

If the group rate is no longer available, prevailing rates may be offered for some or all of your dates. Reservations must be made by April 1, 2022 and rooms are subject to availability.

General Information

Continental breakfast, buffet lunch, and an afternoon snack will be served.

Norris Conference Center - Dallas
12005 Ford Road
Suite 200
Dallas, TX, 75234
Hotel & Room Block Info

There is not a room block for this location. Nearby hotels include: 

  • Wyndham Garden Dallas North – .3 miles
  • Courtyard by Marriott Dallas Northwest – 1.1 miles
  • Holiday Inn Express & Suites Dallas Northwest Farmers Branch – 3.1 miles
  • Omni Hotel Dallas Park West – 3.0 miles
  • Doubletree by Hilton Farmers Branch /Hilton Dallas Lincoln Centre

General Information

Food and Beverage

There will be all-day beverage service. In addition, continental breakfast will be served; a buffet lunch; and an afternoon dessert.

The Flamingo Hotel
3555 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV, 89109
Hotel & Room Block Info

There is a room block for this location for 2022 Las Vegas Government Contracts Week attendees. The rate is $94.00 + daily resort fee of $35.00 per room, per night. To make reservations, click on this reservation link. Reservations must be made by August 9, 2022 and are subject to availability.

General Information

Continental breakfast and lunch will be served each day.

The Westin Hilton Head Island
2 Grasslawn Avenue
Hilton Head Island, SC, 29928
Hotel & Room Block Info

There is a room block for this location. The rate is $282/night plus tax, plus a resort charge of $20 per room, per night. You may reserve a room by going to this booking website at Reservations must be made by July 5, 2022 and rooms are subject to availability.

Government Per Diem

Please note that we have reserved a limited number of guest rooms at the government per diem rate of $182/night plus tax, plus a resort charge of $20 per room, per night. These rooms are limited to one attendee per qualifying company. To book your reservation, visit .You will be required to present a valid Government ID upon check-in to confirm use of the government rate.

General Information

Continental breakfast, lunch, and an afternoon snack will be served.

Bring Federal Publications Seminars to your location! If you would like to offer this course in-house, please contact us.
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  • 100
    Basic or fundamental subject matter is covered. Courses are geared to general knowledge or can be taken as a refresher.
  • 200
    Specific topics or issues within a topic area are covered. Students should be familiar with terms of art and general concepts concerning the course topic.
  • 300
    Workshops and class discussions cover specific subject matter in-depth, and participation is strongly encouraged. Attendees should have at least 2-3 years' experience in the area of study.
  • 400
    Courses build upon students' knowledge and experience, and cover complex issues within the subject matter. Should have 4-5 years' mastery of subject for in-depth analysis.
  • 500
    Masters-level programs designed for professionals with 5+ years' experience. Courses cover in-depth and technical analysis on specific subjects and updates on current issues.