Criminal Justice Research and Development_Graduate Research Fellowships


NIJ’s Graduate Research Fellowship (GRF) program provides awards to accredited universities for the support of doctoral students engaged in research relevant to ensuring public safety, preventing and controlling crime, and ensuring the fair and impartial administration of criminal justice in the United States. The GRF Program has two tracks: Social and Behavioral Sciences; and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). This fellowship program furthers the Department’s mission by sponsoring research to provide objective, independent, evidence-based knowledge and tools to meet the challenges of crime and justice, particularly at the state and local levels.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Agency: Department of Justice
Office: National Institute of Justice
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Program Accomplishments
Not Applicable.
Title I of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968, Part A, Sections 201-202, Pub. L. No. 90-351, 42 USC 3721 - 42 USC 3722 and an act appropriating funds for the Department of Justice in the current fiscal year.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Degree-granting academic institutions in the United States. The institution must be fully accredited by one of the regional institutional accreditation agencies recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education.
Beneficiary Eligibility
The ultimate beneficiaries of this program are graduate students engaged in research relevant to criminal justice, forensic science, and public safety.
Interested applicants are encouraged to review the current solicitation for the specific GRF Program track for information about required documents.

Regarding the question below relating to the applicability of 2 CFR 200, Subpart E – Cost Principles: The cost principles are generally applicable, except with respect to for-profit entities or to organizations listed at Appendix VIII to 2 CFR Part 200. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is not applicable. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Applicants must submit completed applications via the method prescribed in the solicitation. The receipt, review, and analysis of applications will follow Office of Justice Programs policies and procedures for the administration of grant applications. Specific application instructions for solicitations are available at the Office of Justice Programs web site (
Award Procedure
Grants are awarded by the Director of the National Institute of Justice. NIJ makes awards on a competitive basis. Notification of an award will be transmitted electronically to the submitting organization by the Grants Management System.
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
From 60 to 180 days. Deadlines are included with the application instructions, which are posted on the Office of Justice Programs web site (
For statutory formula awards, see 28 C.F.R. Part 18. There are no appeal rights for rejection of a discretionary application, but for discretionary awards, see 28 C.F.R. Part 18.
Please contact program office for more information.
How are proposals selected?
The scientific merit of the proposed research and its relevance to criminal justice policy and practice in the United States are assessed using the following selection criteria: 1) understanding of the problem and its importance; 2) quality and technical merit of the project design and its implementation; 3) potential for impact of the proposed project and its relevance to policy and practice; and 4) the capabilities, competencies and experience of the doctoral student.
How may assistance be used?
The program supports academic institutions sponsoring students engaged in doctoral research. Award funds may be used to cover a student’s stipend and fringe benefits, tuition and fees, and other allowable research expenses, as specified in the specific GRF Program solicitation. Award funds cannot be used to pay for direct or indirect administrative expenses of the applicant educational institution.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
No program reports are required. No cash reports are required. Progress reports are required. Additionally, an electronic copy of the graduate fellow’s approved, defended dissertation is required upon completion. Quarterly financial reports are required. To assist in fulfilling the Departments responsibilities under the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA), Public Law 103-62, and the GPRA Modernization Act of 2010, Public Law 111–352, recipients must provide data that measures the results of their work.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. See 2 CFR 200 for audit requirements.
See 2 C.F.R . § 200.334 for the government-wide requirements for retention requirements for records.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
This program has no statutory formula.
This program has no matching requirements.
This program does not have MOE requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Grants may be awarded for up to 36 months of support, pending demonstration of adequate progress. The total period of an award will not exceed five years. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Funds are awarded in the form of a grant. See the Office of Justice Programs’ Financial Guide for more information. (
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
None. Email: (Social and Behavioral Sciences) or (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
Headquarters Office
NIJ U.S. Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
National Institute of Justice
810 7th Street, NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20531 Phone: (202) 307-2942.
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants) FY 14 Not Separately Identifiable; FY 15 Not Separately Identifiable; and FY 16 Not Separately Identifiable
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
No Data Available.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Electronic versions of both GRF solicitations can be found on NIJ’s website at
Examples of Funded Projects
Not Applicable.