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Description: Through this course learners will evaluate information obtained through an investigation package, identifying any potential issues in the information for mitigation and resolution. Learners will also identify potential security concerns and risks based upon application of the national security adjudicative guidelines. Through case review, learners will determine eligibility based upon practical application of adjudicative methodology for final national security adjudicative determinations.

Learning Objectives: Students will learn how to identify security concerns by utilizing National Security Adjudicative Guidelines to make a personnel security determination. In addition, they will be introduced to the whole person concept, different types of background investigations, designated sensitive positions, and personnel security policies and regulations. Students will also learn how to evaluate a portion of a person’s life to reasonably determine if their future behavior would be consistent with national security.

Delivery Method: Instructor-led

Length: 6 and 1/2 days

Target Audience: Department of Defense (DoD) and federal civilians (GS/GG 5-7 level) who adjudicate eligibility for assignment to sensitive positions and/or access to collateral and Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) program information or DoD/DoD IC Government Civilian/Military personnel (non-adjudicators) who perform duties in support of national security adjudications. Nominations for attendance must be approved and made through training coordinator or designee.


  • Clearance Requirements: N/A
  • Attendance Requirement: Full-time attendance and participation in all sessions.
  • Exam Requirements: Students must earn 105 points out of 140, a 75 percent grade average on course exams and performance exercises.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the Introduction to National Security Adjudication PS001.08 course and accompanying exam.

Credits Recommended/Earned:

  • ACE Credit Recommendation: Three (3) semester hours, lower division baccalaureate/associate degree category.
  • Professional Development Units per SPēD: 45

System Requirements: Check if your system is configured appropriately to use STEPP.


CDSE courses are intended for use by Department of Defense and other U.S. Government personnel and contractors within the National Industrial Security Program.