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Applying the Latest Research to Prevent Bullying: Empowering Schools to Change Behavior & Attitudes

January 2020

Bullying prevention is an important aspect of school safety. During this webinar, co-sponsored by NIJ and the Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention, renowned bullying prevention researchers will share information schools can use to address bullying. This information will include helping teachers respond to bullying in the classroom and giving students who see bullying tools to take action to address it. 

Review and Awarding - Graduate Research Fellowship Program

The number of GRF awards will depend on the availability of funds and quality of applications. For 2020, NIJ anticipates that up to $3,000,000 will be available annually for approximately 20 new fellows. See a list of past GRF awards.

Independent external peer review panels evaluate all responsive GRF proposals. Reviewers from across the social, physical, and life sciences and engineering fields are chosen for their scientific expertise and experience in advising graduate students. These external reviewers assess the merits of each application against the specific criteria outlined in the solicitation.

Peer review results are presented to the NIJ Director, who has the final authority to make awards. NIJ strives to fund as many quality fellowship applications as possible, given available funding.

The application review process, including peer review, decision-making and other considerations, may take up to six months. All notices of award are made no later than September 30. Notices of award and non-award are sent by email to the university Authorized Representative and Point of Contact (POC) identified on the application. The POC is typically an Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) administrator, so students are encouraged to maintain communication with their OSP.

GRF grants require:

  • Quarterly financial reports from the university.
  • Annual progress reports. See the NIJ guidance for following the RPPR format. Typically, the student drafts the report, the committee chair reviews, and the grant POC (often a university Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) official) submits.
  • An official signed copy of the defended dissertation. 

NIJ recognizes that it is not uncommon for universities to allow, or even require, enrollment in a reduced credit load in the advanced stages of a degree program. To accommodate this practice, NIJ GRF does not require full-time enrollment during the fellowship term. But please note that the fellowship may only draw funds while the student is actively enrolled in the degree program and carrying out the dissertation research proposed in their fellowship application. Should certain unforeseen and/or temporary circumstances arise that preclude the fellow from actively pursuing the dissertation research, the fellow is expected to notify NIJ via his/her academic institution representative. The fellow’s award funding may be temporarily suspended at the discretion of NIJ.

NIJ doesn’t prohibit fellows from obtaining additional employment. Nevertheless, the intent of the program is that fellowship support should allow the student to devote primary effort to the dissertation research. Students should check whether their universities have policies limiting outside employment while receiving fellowship funds.

Yes, a student can receive other awards or stipends. However, any other funding or support must be disclosed (e.g., research or teaching assistantships, positions held under an advisor's grant, other private or government fellowships, grants, stipends). NIJ may seek to avoid duplicative funding, if appropriate.

No. Fellowship funds may be used to support only the originally reviewed and awarded GRF fellow, and are not transferable to any other student.

Doctoral students who have already started their dissertation research are encouraged to apply. Any student enrolled full-time in a qualifying Ph.D. program and proposing a dissertation topic with relevance to criminal justice may apply at any stage in their graduate career.

If a student’s dissertation committee has already accepted the dissertation topic proposed in the GRF application, the student would be eligible for release of fellowship funds as soon as all other administrative requirements are met. Commencing research before submitting an application or while the application is under review does not necessarily impact the likelihood of receiving an award.

Yes. In this case, a “resubmit response” statement should be included with the program narrative. This statement should include the title and submission date of the earlier application, and describe any changes made to the proposal in response to prior peer review comments.

Application Submission - Graduate Research Fellowship Program

The official applicant is the sponsoring academic institution. Students must contact and seek the assistance of the university’s Office of Sponsored Programs, or equivalent office. Working with the student and his or her dissertation committee chair (or intended dissertation committee chair), a representative from the university OSP must complete and submit the full application package online at Grants.gov by the deadline date. Refer to the solicitation for a full list of required documents.

Because coordination with their university OSP is necessary, students are encouraged to make contact EARLY to express their intent to submit an application.

Yes, but a separate application must be submitted for each student.

A university official (but NOT the sponsored student) should be listed as the grant Point of Contact (POC). The POC must be able to authoritatively respond to correspondence from OJP/NIJ and will be required to take the OJP OCFO financial management training before grant funds can become available. Typically, the grant POC is a staff member from the university grants administration office or a university faculty member. An official with signing authority for the sponsoring academic institution should be listed as the Authorized Representative.

If allowed by university policy, the doctoral student should be the project’s Principal Investigator (PI). If this is not permitted, the student's dissertation committee chair or faculty advisor should be listed as PI, with the student listed as co-Principal Investigator (co-PI), “Graduate Research Fellow,” or similar.

No, there is no relationship between these roles. These roles are typically filled by different people.

The committee chair (or faculty advisor, department chair, departmental director of graduate studies, or individual with similar responsibilities, as applicable) is expected to write a statement of support to be included with the application package. 

This statement may NOT be submitted independently by the committee chair, but must be included with the entire application package submitted by the university OSP administrator. Failure to include the statement of support at the time of application will disqualify an applicant.

The student must work with a representative from the university’s Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP), or equivalent office, to assemble an application package.

The student is expected to author the program narrative and personal statement, as well as other necessary appendices, as specified in the solicitation. These documents should be provided to the OSP administrator early enough to ensure that the application can be submitted before the deadline.

The university must provide verification of current full-time enrollment in a qualifying doctoral program. As the official applicant, the university must upload all required documents and submit the application package in Grants.gov. See the current solicitation for the list of required documents. Each file should be descriptively named according to what it contains (e.g., program narrative, appendices, budget).

The proposed start date should be the estimated date on which the student could reasonably begin work on the dissertation research project, pending demonstration to NIJ of the formation of a dissertation committee and acceptance of the proposed dissertation topic. The proposed fellowship start date should be no earlier than January 1 of the year following application submission.

The practical availability of funds may be delayed pending the fulfillment of administrative award conditions. NIJ cautions the doctoral student and academic institution not to depend on any GRF funds until these requirements have been met.

Yes. Under such circumstances, in addition to all other requirements, the institution must submit an official letter stating that it expects that the student will be enrolled full-time in the doctoral degree program beginning the academic term in which fellowship activity is proposed to begin. Be aware that under these circumstances, if an award is made, NIJ will place a condition on the award withholding funds until full-time enrollment is demonstrated for the academic term in which fellowship activity is proposed to begin.

The program narrative appendices should include:

  • Bibliography/references.
  • Any tools/instruments, questionnaires, tables/charts/graphs, or maps pertaining to the proposed project that are supplemental to, but not essential to, a basic understanding of the main body of the narrative.
  • Personal statement from the doctoral student discussing his or her academic background, research experience, career goals and the anticipated role of the fellowship in his or her professional trajectory.
  • Proposed project timeline and expected milestones.
  • List of all people who will be involved with the project.
  • Human Subjects Protection paperwork (documentation and forms related to Institutional Review Board (IRB) review, if applicable). Note: Final IRB approval is not required at the time an application is submitted. Read about NIJ’s human subjects protections requirements.
  • Privacy Certificate. Read NIJ’s privacy certificate guidance.
  • A list of any previous and current NIJ awards to applicant organization and investigator(s).
  • List of other agencies, organizations or funding sources to which this proposal has been submitted or other fellowships/scholarships to which the doctoral student has applied or from whom the doctoral student expects to receive support during the proposed fellowship tenure (if applicable).
  • Applicants proposing to use incentives or stipends payments as part of their research project design, must submit an incentive or stipend approval request, as a separate document. Read NIJ’s research subjects incentives policy.
  • Letters of cooperation/support or administrative agreements from organizations collaborating in the project, such as law enforcement and correctional agencies (if applicable).

Gang Membership Prevention

June 2010

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and NIJ collaborated on a book that focuses on promising principles for gang membership prevention. This NIJ Conference Panel discusses the risk and protective factors that influence gang membership as well as efforts to reduce such factors. Panelists also explored the direction of gang research for the future.

Discussing the Future of Justice-Involved Young Adults

September 2015

New science in brain development is transforming young adult involvement with the justice system. On Tuesday, September 8, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Assistant Attorney General Karol Mason, and experts from NIJ and the Harvard Kennedy School Program in Criminal Justice who serve on the Executive Session on Community Corrections discussed the future of justice-involved young adults.

Sexual Violence Research 15 Years After VAWA

June 2010

Panelists will summarize the progress and results of sexual violence research since the passage of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994. The panel will also examine how research has contributed to policy, assess current knowledge gaps and discuss research needs.