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NAGPRA Training

NAGPRA Training Videos
NAGPRA Basics Training
NAGPRA Webinars
Additional NAGPRA Trainings

Below is a list of training opportunities available through the National NAGPRA Program or its partners.

NAGPRA Training Videos
The NAGPRA Video Project began in October 2008 with the mission to create a training series that would include grant-writing tips, first-person narratives, program statistics, anecdotal evidence, and in-depth, engaging coverage of the entirety of the law and its consequences. The National NAGPRA Program has conducted fifty interviews in ten cities across the country. These interviews with tribal members, museum officials and Federal agency representatives have created a historic archive of resources on consultation, grants, notices, law making, dispositions, documentation and repatriation.

Production on the NAGPRA Video series is complete. Some of the videos have been shown to the Review Committee. The segment “History of NAGPRA” premiered during the NAGPRA at 20 Symposium. The entire eight-segment series is now available to the public on demand, through the National NAGPRA Program’s Official YouTube Channel. Click on any of the titles listed below to access our on-demand videos:

NAGPRA Notices
This video provides an overview of NAGPRA Notices. A NAGPRA Notice is a printed announcement of a Federal agency or museum's decision on Native American human remains and cultural items. A NAGPRA Notice either establishes the rights of tribes to request human remains or reflects the agreement to transfer control of Native American cultural items. Two types of Notices will be discussed, Notices of Inventory Completion and Notices of Intent to Repatriation cultural items, and review what information each type of notice should contain. Also, this segment will go through the publication of a NAGPRA notice. NAGPRA was created to address the rights of lineal descendants, Indian tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations to Native American human remains and cultural items.

The video will review the NAGPRA Grants Program, discuss two types of grants offered, and review grant supported activities. Hear from successful grant applicants and NAGPRA Grants panelists on how to strengthen your application, and get tips for strengthening your grant application. The grant review process will be described as well. The heart of the NAGPRA process is the relationship building that occurs between museums and tribes. Through NAGPRA, tribes, museums, and federal agencies can come together to better understand and care for Native American collections. NAGPRA also provides a way to return Native American human remains and cultural items that protect the integrity of museums, federal agencies, and tribes and insures that human remains and cultural items are returned in culturally and spiritually appropriate ways. The NAGPRA Grants program exists to support these efforts.

Consultation under NAGPRA
The goal of this video is to explain how the term "consultation" is defined under NAGPRA, review NAGPRA's requirements for consultation, and provide you with guidelines and suggestions toward successful consultation. By the end of the video, we hope to have explained why consultation is such a critical component of NAGPRA, what to expect from consultation, when to schedule a consultation, and how to make the most of consultation.

Decision-making under NAGPRA
This video will explain what evidence is used to determine cultural affiliation by a museum or federal agency under NAGPRA, discuss how a decision is reached, and review what occurs when there is a dispute over a finding. Federal agencies and museums must comply with NAGPRA if they have possession or control over native American human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony. For purposes of NAGPRA, federal agencies do not include the Smithsonian Institution. Museums under NAGPRA are any institution or State or local government agency (including any institution of higher learning) that receives Federal funds and has possession of, or control over, Native American cultural items.

NAGPRA Civil Penalties
NAGPRA Civil Penalties narrated by Bob Palmer, NAGPRA Civil Penalties Investigator. This video will take you through the NAGPRA civil penalty investigative process. Discuss ways in which a museum can fail to comply with the Act, how to file an allegation against a museum, the museum's rights in a proceeding, and what's involved in the civil penalty stage of the process.

NAGPRA Review Committee
The Review Committee was created by Congress to advise both the Secretary of the Interior and Congress on the implementation of NAGPRA. In this video, you will hear from past and present Review Committee members about membership and responsibilities, watch an actual dispute before a Review Committee, along with the Committee's deliberation, findings of fact, and recommendations, and listen to members' personal perspectives on working relationships, consensus, and emerging issues in NAGPRA. By the end of the video, you will understand the role the Review Committee plays in NAGPRA and the ways the Review Committee can help you in the NAGPRA compliance process.

The Development of NAGPRA
This DVD explores the significant events that led to the passage of NAGPRA, and highlights NAGPRA's significance for Native Americans, museums and the scientific community today.

NAGPRA in a nutshell. Short Takes: A composite of interviews with NAGPRA constituents.

NAGPRA Basics Training
The National NAGPRA Program has generally sponsored an in-person NAGPRA Basics training on the day preceding a NAGPRA Review Committee meeting. NAGPRA Basics training covers the background of NAGPRA, the consultation and decision making process, notices, grants, and civil penalties. Both new and veteran NAGPRA practitioners have found this training to be helpful in their work. NAGPRA Basics is tuition-free, but participants must fund their own travel and incidental expenses, as no grants are available to attend this training. For additional information, contact David Tarler at 202-354-2108 or

In addition, NAGPRA Program staff members might be available to provide customized on-site training. For more information, contact David Tarler at 202-354-2108 or email

Previous Training

Presentations (PDF) from NAGPRA Basics, Washington, DC, Nov. 27, 2012

NAGPRA Webinars
The National NAGPRA Program is offering a series of webinars on various topics related to the implementation of NAGPRA. The webinars are free, and we encourage you to register early. For those who have not participated in a webinar, you will need a computer with internet access and a phone (preferably a speaker phone with muting capabilities – no cell phones, please). You will be taken through a written presentation on your computer and be able to hear, ask questions and participate in the discussion over the phone. Essentially, you will receive a full training without leaving your desk. Plus, you can have as many people gather around your phone and computer as you like. For those without computer access, you may register for a webinar and access the session by phone only, using a paper copy or electronic copy of the materials to follow the written presentation. Please advise us when you register if you will need a copy of the materials in order to follow the written presentation.

Webinar Registration
To register, click on the event registration link under each webinar description. Once registered, you will receive an email response with information for accessing the webinar. Instructions for joining the meeting and support for technical assistance will be in your registration email. Please save the email you receive after registering. If you need technical assistance with registration, please email Include the name and date of the webinar in the subject line.

Upcoming Webinars:

Navigating the Intersection between NAGPRA and Section 106 - This event is cancelled until further notice.

Since November 16, 1990, whenever a project carried out, approved, or funded by a Federal agency is to occur on Federal land or tribal land, both Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA, 16 U.S.C. 470f) and Section 3 of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3002) are relevant. Under NHPA Section 106, if the project has the potential to affect historic properties on tribal land, or historic properties of significance to one or more Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations on Federal land, then prior to beginning the project, the Federal agency must consult with officials of the appropriate Native Hawaiian organization(s) or federally recognized Indian tribe(s) on measures to avoid or reduce harm to the historic properties in the area of potential effect. As compliance with Section 106 (NHPA) does not satisfy the requirements of Section 3 (NAGPRA), and vice versa, successful completion of Section 106 review is no guarantee that the project may proceed uninterrupted, for Section 3 of NAGPRA will temporarily halt the project if Native American human remains or other cultural items are discovered and no plan is in place that addresses their excavation or removal, and disposition. Thus, preplanning under both NAGPRA and NHPA saves time once a project begins. Recently, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation and the National Park Service have decided to jointly issue an instruction that provides an overview of the intersection of these separate cultural heritage requirements in the law and clarifies how Federal agencies can achieve compliance with both sets of requirements while, at the same time, maximizing efficiencies in consultation. In this webinar, the presenters will briefly review NHPA Section 106 and NAGPRA Section 3 responsibilities, present the joint NPS-ACHP instruction on the intersection of NAGPRA and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, and offer ideas about how preplanning under both statutes might be accomplished. This forum seeks to thoughtfully consider your questions, so please include them along with your registration.  

Presenters: Jeffrey Durbin, Section 106 Compliance Program Officer, Washington Office, National Park Service; Valerie Hauser, Director, Office of Native American Affairs, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; Sherry Hutt, Manager, National NAGPRA Program; and Reid Nelson, Director, Office of Federal Agency Programs, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation 


A New Rule on Unclaimed Cultural Items Discovered on Federal lands after November 16, 1990 - This event is cancelled until further notice.

Note: This webinar will take place only if the regulation is published as a final rule before September 4, 2014

Section 3 of NAGPRA addresses the ownership or control of human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony excavated or removed from Federal or tribal lands after November 16, 1990. In Section 3 of the Act, Congress directed the Secretary of the Interior to promulgate regulations for the disposition of cultural items that were not claimed under that section. On October 29, 2013, the Office of the Secretary published a proposed rule on procedures for the disposition of unclaimed cultural items excavated or removed from Federal lands. (An Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization must state a claim for cultural items only if the items were removed from Federal lands, as ownership or control of cultural items removed from tribal land automatically vests in the Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization on whose tribal land the items were discovered.)  The Office of the Secretary solicited comments on the proposed rule.  Following comment and publication of the final rule in the Federal Register, this webinar explains the process by which Federal agency officials may now address unclaimed cultural items removed from the lands they manage.  This forum seeks to thoughtfully consider your questions, so please include them along with your registration.

Presenters:  Sherry Hutt, Manager, National NAGPRA Program; Carla Mattix, Attorney-Advisor, Office of the Solicitor, Division of Parks and Wildlife, Department of the Interior; and Stephen Simpson, Senior Attorney, Office of the Solicitor, Division of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior 


Recorded Webinars:

Beginning July 2012, some webinars will be available for viewing on demand. Recorded live, these 60 to 90 minute presentations allow viewers to experience the original sessions.

-The Ingredients of a Successful NAGPRA Grant Application
-NAGPRA Notices: Types, Process & Content
-Determining Aboriginal Lands Under NAGPRA
State Protocols and NAGPRA
-A Demonstration of the National NAGPRA Program Databases


past webinars and descriptions


Additional NAGPRA Trainings

National Preservation Institute
The National NAGPRA Program has partnered with the National Preservation Institute (NPI) to offer in-depth training on various issues related to NAGPRA implementation. Open to Federal agencies, museums, Indian tribes, Native Hawaiian organizations, and others interested in NAGPRA, these trainings are designed to provide participants with practical knowledge and tools needed to support their NAGPRA efforts.

Below are the National NAGPRA-NPI partnership trainings that are available through NPI as customized, on-site training.

NAGPRA: Databases, Summaries, Inventories, and Notices
Review the summaries and inventories requirements for the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). Each Federal agency and museum with control over Native American human remains and cultural items must complete and submit a Summary and/or Inventory to Indian tribes/Native Hawaiian organizations and the National NAGPRA Program. These documents are the basis for writing a Federal Register notice, allowing for repatriation or other disposition. Discuss NAGPRA requirements and ongoing responsibilities under the Future Applicability rule (43 CFR 10.13) for Summaries and Inventories. Compliance documentation (inventories and summary information) is available in the form of online databases created by the National NAGPRA Program. Using these databases, learn how to identify Indian tribes for consultations, evaluate the data supplied by museums and Federal agencies, and explore ways the data can be utilized to further NAGPRA compliance.

NAGPRA: Determining Cultural Affiliation
Review the tools and best practices for determining cultural affiliation as part of the requirements of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). Each Federal agency and museum with control over Native American human remains must identify cultural affiliation if it can do so on the basis of reasonable belief. Discuss NAGPRA requirements, definitions of critical terminology, grant assistance, and the consultation and review process.

NAGPRA: Writing and Managing a Successful Grant

The National NAGPRA Program offers grants to assist museums, Indian tribes and Native Hawaian organizations with the implementation of NAGPRA. The NAGPRA process may include consultation, documentation, and repatriation or other disposition of human remains and cultural items. Learn how to assess the needs of a NAGPRA program, identify fundable projects, and write and manage a successful grant. Review case studies of grant applications and projects.

Additional Seminars Offered Through NPI
In addition to the above listed seminars, the National Preservation Institute offers a variety of ongoing trainings that support NAGPRA compliance. Detailed seminar descriptions, agendas, and registration information are located on the National Preservation Institute’s website.

Frequently Asked Questions
Law and Regulations
Online Databases
Documents and Publications
Review Committee
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