Honors in Criminal Justice Research

Honors in Criminal Justice Research

Program Overview

To recognize the research accomplishments of undergraduate scholars in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice (SCCJ), the school provides an opportunity to demonstrate academic excellence in research for students who complete honors research enriched experiences beyond their standard coursework.

The mission of this program is to:

  1. Promote honors research opportunities and experiences;

  2. Provide enriching honors research-related experiences to undergraduate students; 

  3. Create a pathway for students to received recognition for their specialized research;

  4. Allow undergraduate students to apply classroom knowledge in research rich environments;

  5. Distinguish honors research achievements beyond the standard coursework.

In doing so, this program offers mentorship to students in developing their knowledge, skills and abilities in honors research that are fitting for graduate school and careers in evidence-based practices. To achieve the Honors in Criminal Justice Research designation on their transcripts, students need to meet the eligibility standards, satisfy the program requirements, and complete the deliverables specified below. 


Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for the Honors in Criminal Justice Research designation, undergraduate students shall demonstrate:

  1. Progress toward satisfying the criminal justice major (9 credits completed at time of application, with 6 of those credits coming from the courses listed in #2);
  2. A 3.5 GPA in completed CCJ core classes (must have completed two at time of application);
    1. CCJ 3014: Criminology
    2. CCJ 4700: Methods of Research
    3. CCJ 4054: Ethics and the Justice System; and
  3. GPA of 3.2 or higher (at the time of application and maintained through degree conferral) in their overall coursework.


Getting Started

Upon satisfying the eligibility requirements, interested students should contact the SCCJ faculty member whose research interest are closest to those the student wishes to pursue in an intensive Directed Independent Study or Directed Independent Research (DIS or DIR) experience. See our list of potential full-time PhD faculty.

Students are responsible for reviewing the Department's DIS and DIR guidelines and encouraged to think about research topics that are creative, collaborative, interdisciplinary, and civically engaging. Students usually begin the program in their sophomore or junior year and conduct independent but supervised research during their junior and senior year.


Application Requirements

These materials should be submitted no later than three weeks prior to the beginning of the semester in which students seek to be enrolled in the program:

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Program Requirements

To maintain compliance with the Honors in Criminal Justice Research program, students should:

  1. maintain good academic and ethical standing;
  2. complete Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative certificates in:
    1. Social and Behavioral Research Investigations;
    2. Responsible Conduct of Research; and
    3. Conflicts of Interest
  3. *The modules for these courses can be completed online in a few hours.

  4. must complete one set of course options in Directed Independent Study (DIS), Directed Independent Research (DIR) and Research Intensive (RI) courses:
    1. 6 DIS credits with a 3.5 GPA
    2. 6 DIR credits with a 3.5 GPA
    3. 3 DIS and 3 DIR credits with a 3.5 GPA
    4. 3 DIS and a 3-credit RI CCJ eligible course with a 3.5 GPA
    5. 3 DIR and a 3-credit RI CCJ eligible course with a 3.5 GPA or
    6. 2 RI courses (each 3 credits minimum)


Students will receive the designation “Honors in Criminal Justice Research” at the time of graduation upon satisfactory completion of two of the following three requirements:

  1. Internal or external grant/fellowship application submission with input from a SCCJ professor;

  2. Faculty advisor approved submission for an oral presentation at a university, regional, national, or international symposium, consortium or conference; or

  3. Significant contribution, as determined by a SCCJ faculty co-author, to a publishable manuscript in a peer-reviewed outlet.

Questions? Please contact Shawn Backer, Instructor, at sbacker2014@fau.edu