Contact Us

Amanda Harrison
Manager, Honors and Scholars Programs

Anderson Hall, Room 112 on a map

Community-Based Research Scholars 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20016 United States

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Frequently Asked Questions

There is no application to the program; students are offered a place in the program with their admission to the university. We are looking for academically strong students who demonstrate the ability to participate in research early in their college career and who have a passion for social justice and community service.

If you would like to be considered for the Community-Based Research Scholars program at American University, you can indicate your interest in a few ways. You can contact your admissions representative, email, or include it in your Common Application section in which you explain your reasons for wanting to attend AU.

A living-learning community creates an environment in which you can more easily build relationships with other talented students, share academic interests and experiences, and adjust to college life in D.C. together. You will live together on same floor as other CBR Scholars along with a Program Associate (PA) assigned to your fall CBRS course. PAs are older students who have completed the program. They are your live-in resource for academic and social support.

Students admitted to American University must be eligible for merit-based or need-based aid as determined by the Office of Financial Aid. The terms of your financial aid are listed in your admission letter.

CBRS is a one-year living-learning community experience for first-year students.

After that, CBR Scholars have the option to be a peer mentor, serve on the student advisory board, apply to be a Program Associate (PA) or Teaching Assistant (TA) as well as the option to enroll in the undergraduate certificate for community-based research to deepen your community-based research and service skills.

No. Admission to CBRS does not come with any additional merit aid. However, program participants do have access to funding for conference travel to present CBRS-related research.

For first-year students: in the fall semester, you will take a 1-credit lab and a 3-credit Complex Problems course that fulfills your AU Core requirement. In the spring semester, you will take a 3-credit community-based research course. For more information, please visit the course descriptions. 

The Complex Problems course meets the AU Core requirement. All other courses will also count towards the requirements for a Community-Based Research Certificate or as electives.

Incoming first-year students will live on the CBRS and Honors floor in Anderson Hall.

CBRS students may room with other CBRS and/or Honors students.

CBR Scholars will be expected to attend a fall orientation and retreat, as well as a limited number of other program events throughout the year.

All CBR Scholars also engage in community-based learning (either as a volunteer or in a public service Federal Work-Study position) for 20 hours per semester at a local nonprofit organization.

Please contact with any questions regarding the program.