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Professional Certificate In Restorative Justice

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Students complete the Professional Certificate in Restorative Justice online, on campus, or a hybrid of both. To obtain the certificate a student must earn a minimum of 9 credits through enrollment in at least three courses.

Students pursuing the Professional Certificate must take one of the foundational courses, Principles of Restorative Justice or Restorative Justice Theory and Practice or Origins, Evolution, and Critical Issues in Restorative Justice. The remaining courses are chosen from an approved list of electives. A student pursuing a Professional Certificate in Restorative Justice may apply Professional Certificate in Restorative Justice credits toward the Master of Arts in Restorative Justice with approval from the Director of the Center for Justice Reform.


Program Center: Center for Justice Reform
Location: Online, on-campus or a hybrid of both
Credit Requirements: 9 credits

Required Course - 3 Credits

  • Principles of Restorative Justice (3) or Origins, Evolution, and Critical Issues in Restorative Justice (3) or Restorative Justice Theory and Practice (2)

Elective Courses - Minimum of 6 Credits

  • Restorative Justice in Educational Institutions (3)
  • Ethics and Restorative Justice (3)
  • Juvenile Justice (3)
  • Restorative Justice Theory and Practice (2)
  • Adversity, Trauma, and Victimization (3)
  • New Approaches to Domestic and Sexual Violence (3)
  • Advanced Criminal Law Seminar (2)
  • Clemency, Pardons, Expungement (3)
  • Narrative Writing Seminar (3)
  • Restorative Justice in Indigenous Communities (3)
  • Advanced Restorative Practices (2)
  • Global Restorative Justice (3)
  • Legislation Regulation (3) or Legislation Regulation Survey (3)
  • Communication, Advocacy, and Leadership (3)
  • Advanced Victim Rights Seminar (3)
  • Applied Criminal Justice (3)
  • Peacemaking Courts (3)
  • Pleas, Sentencing and Accountability (3)
  • Race, Crimes, & Restorative Justice (3)

These are the current elective courses. Additional elective courses are in development.

SUMMERS-ONLY Professional Certificate PROGRAM

You can complete the summer only Professional Certificate by taking courses during one Vermont Law School Summer Session, and taking one class via online learning.

Courses are subject to change. For more information contact the Office of the Registrar:

Student testimonials:

LeTicia Taylor - Online Professional Certificate 2020

The experience I had @VTLawSchool does not compare to any other "schooling" I've had. If I could do it all over, I would have skipped the two other grad schools I attended. The care by the RJ professors and transparency of the participants in my cohort kept me engaged and wanting to learn more.  The interaction was timely and consistent throughout my entire process at Vermont Law. Thank you for extending this opportunity.  I will certainly share the good news and invite others to share in the Vermont Law School journey. 

#RestorativeJustice #BuildingRelationships #SupportingCommunity #RepairingHarm

Donna Davis - Online Professional Certificate 2020

At the beginning of 2018 I became aware of Restorative Justice for the first time.  My desire to become informed and equipped to make a difference in a broken criminal justice system was enkindled and led to reading and online exploration.  Vermont Law School kept coming up in my search, so I called to inquire.  My first contact was experienced as welcoming and supportive, yet realistic in bringing to my attention the prospective cost of a graduate degree – est. $40,000.  Although now skeptical of pursuing such a lofty goal, I was reluctant to discard my ambition.   Inquiries into other institutions brought me back to VLS, and I began to focus on the 3-course Professional Certificate in Restorative Justice.  An adjustment to the tuition based on my rather extensive commitment to volunteer work in prison permitted me to proceed with my first class – “Origins, Evolution and Critical Issues in Restorative Justice” – with Professor Erika Sasson.  I must tell you that within the first week I had the assurance that this was the best x-thousands of dollars I had ever spent.  The approach of the assignments was both introspective and intellectual.  The privilege of spending 7+ weeks interacting with intelligent, articulate, respectful, passionate classmates and our profoundly encouraging and challenging professor was an experience that, I now know, only money can buy!  The assignments, deadlines, and navigation of an online graduate-level system had me tearing my hair out and loving every minute of it.  Even now, in recollecting the experience, I sense the thrill in my soul.

 I have found tremendous support in adapting to the unfamiliar elements in online graduate-level academic work, great affirmation of strengths I might not have taken seriously without this experience, and respectful encouragement to refine certain skills and increase the discipline required to achieve the competence that might one day contribute to the reform so desperately needed in this field.  Thank you Erika, Veronika (first telephone contact) and VLS!


Meet the Scholarship Award Recipients

Photograph of the 2021 VLS PCRJ Scholarship recipients
PCRJ Scholarship Recipients 2021
Meet the recipients of the 2021 PCRJ Scholarship Award.
Photograph of the 2020 VLS PCRJ Scholarship recipients
PCRJ Scholarship Recipients 2020
Meet the recipients of the 2020 Professional Certificate inRestorative Justice Scholarship Award.