Center for Restorative Justice: RJ Training & Certifications | USD

Restorative Justice (RJ) — an emerging global social movement with many traditions and approaches — embraces community empowerment, participation, and accountability to address harm and strengthen relationships.

The USD Center for Restorative Justice promotes research, teaching, training, implementation, and support for restorative justice. 

Restorative Justice Services for Educational Institutions

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Bring Healing and Accountability to Your School

Educational institutions are at the forefront of innovation and setting the highest standards for equitable and safe learning environments. Restorative justice practices provide the space for learning and personal growth as well and meaningful individual and collective accountability for preventing and addressing harm when it occurs.

Watch our RJ Training in Action

The USD Center for RJ recognizes the very real pressures facing educational administrators to manage high caseloads, ensure fair treatment, minimize institutional liability, protect the campus community, and help community members address harm effectively.

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Specialized Restorative Training Programs

  • Foundational Campus RJ for Higher Education

We have pioneered a robust remote RJ training experience via Zoom, conducted in concert with scheduled asynchronous activities. Or, we'd love to visit your campus to deliver our impactful RJ training in-person!


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"I was not expecting the strong sense of community we built (over Zoom!) was a great foundational course, both in terms of philosophy/values, and also practice!"

— Camille Lizarribar • Dean of Student Affairs • Tufts University

Restorative Training for Other Organizations and Communities

The USD Center for RJ adapts its same core restorative paradigm and orientation methodology for other types of organizations, workplace environments, and community groups, training and coaching them to effectively foster and institutionalize a restorative environment to remedy acute harm and create a culture of respect, empathy, trust, and kindness.

Curious?  Let's Talk

Our Community of RJ Practitioners

We nurture and grow our RJ community through mutually enriching dialogues and collaboration. To stay informed and be connected:

Join our Google Groups

Restorative Justice Training for Universities and Colleges Restorative Justice Training for Universities and Colleges

The Restorative Approach, Explained...

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USD Trainer Pedro Flores Explains RJ 
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"Restorative justice is a way to prevent or respond to harm in a community with an emphasis on healing, social support, and active accountability. RJ includes a variety of practices with many rooted in indigenous and religious traditions. Some practices help prevent harm by helping people build relationships and strengthen community. Other practices respond to harm by helping to clearly identify harms, needs, and solutions through an inclusive and collaborative decision-making process."

— David Karp, Director of USD Center for RJ

Upcoming Workshops, Coursework, & Trainings in Restorative Practices

In addition to private RJ trainings by request, we also offer various restorative justice workshops and training programs open to the public.

K-12 RJ Leadership Institute — IN-PERSON (5 Days @ USD)

Starts on: JAN 10th '22   •   Best for: RJ coordinators and district/site administrators for K-12 schools, superintendents, and others responsible for institutionalizing RJ

This 5-day immersive experience is designed to empower K-12 school and district leaders to strategize and lead implementation of restorative justice practices for wielding systematic transformation.  Escape to San Diego in the winter, and return equipped to champion RJ methodologies at your school.

See Details, Dates, and Costs...

HeArtful Journey to Allyship — REMOTE (3 Weeks)

Starts on: JAN 12th '22   •   Best for: Individuals and organizations that want to foster inclusion in their community, and strengthen their own practice of allyship

This unique workshop combines creative expression, narrative, and restorative practices to explore issues of personal identity, culture, and privilege, using arts-based tools to safely dialogue about our challenges and discover how to practice allyship as a way of life.

See Details, Dates, and Costs...

Foundational Campus RJ — REMOTE (6 Weeks)

Starts on: JAN 12th '21   •   Best for: DEI Directors, higher ed administrators, and other staff seeking to incorporate RJ onto their college campus

An intensive introduction to Restorative Justice for institutions of higher education — participants can expect to be fully engaged, uniquely inspired, and invited to authentically show up in a space that fosters human-to-human connection and thrives on the collective wisdom of the community.

See Details, Dates, and Costs... 

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Earn a Certificate in Restorative Justice Facilitation and Leadership

The USD Center for Restorative Justice and Department of Leadership Studies offer TWO RJ certificate tracks — Professional and Graduate

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Restorative Justice Certificate Program for Professional RJ Practitioners

For (aspiring) RJ practitioners seeking to elevate their skills
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Post-graduate Certificate in Restorative Practices

For degree-bearing graduate credit, great for aspiring graduate students and current USD students.
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Both of these three-course restorative justice practices certificate programs provide a comprehensive introduction to RJ facilitation and leadership — via online coursework, experiential skill-building activities, and area-specific expert coaching — empowering participants to effectively lead the implementation of restorative justice practices.

Seeking a Masters or PhD in Restorative Justice Practices? Consider USD's specialized graduate programs in Higher Education and Nonprofit Leadership — pursue a special focus on equity-driven leadership and restorative justice, blending academic RJ theory and knowledge with hands-on restorative experience. Its curriculum also includes the completion of the Restorative Justice Graduate Certificate.

Graduate students can explore a broad range of restorative justice topics — some current and past RJ dissertation projects include:

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Heal and Restore rather than Shame and Punish

Restorative justice approach vs. punitive approach

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Advancing Academic Research in RJ

Housed in the Department of Leadership Studies and closely partnering with the Student Affairs Office of Ethical Development and Restorative Practices, the Center for RJ pioneers research on the efficacy of restorative justice practices in various environments and community settings, and also highlights and disseminates rigorous research and case studies for other academics and practitioners.

Browse recent RJ Publications from the Center

Learn more about our RJ Research Community


We're a Proud Founding Partner of the National Center on Restorative Justice

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The USD Center for Restorative Justice — in partnership with the Vermont Law School, the University of Vermont, and the US Office of Justice Programs Bureau of Justice Assistance — is an integral component of the National Center on Restorative Justice (NCORJ), and is committed to its broad objective of improving criminal justice policy and practice in the United States through education and training. 

Established through several competitive $3-million federal grants, the NCORJ serves as the premier education, training, and research institute for the advancement of restorative justice principles and practices in the US, and strives to expand restorative justice education and training, and access to those opportunities, along with research initiatives that will shape the current restorative justice dialogue and movement.

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National Center on Restorative Justice