Home NIBRS Developments in NIBRS Publication Synopses

Publication Synopses

Developments in NIBRS

Publication Synopses

NOTE: Each of the following NIBRS publications is available on the FBI’s Internet site at http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/ucr.

Volume 1: Data Collection Guidelines (August 2000)

Written for local, state, and federal UCR Program personnel (i.e., administrators, training instructors, report analysts, coders, data entry clerks, etc.), Volume 1 provides a system overview to those responsible for collecting and recording NIBRS crime data for submission to the FBI. It contains descriptions of the offenses, offense codes, reports, data elements, and data values used in the system. Subjects discussed in this publication include:

  • An overview of NIBRS and how the system differs from Summary reporting.
  • Definitions of Group A and Group B offenses.
  • An Offense Lookup Table for reference.
  • National Crime Information Center codes and UCR Offense Codes.
  • The Group A Incident Report, the Group B Arrest Report, and the Zero Report.
  • Definitions and descriptions of the 53 data elements and all of the data values.
  • An explanation of mandatory, optional, common, and additional data elements.


Volume 2: Data Submission Specifications (May 1992)

This publication contains the data submission instructions for magnetic media, record layouts, and error-handling procedures that must be followed in submitting magnetic media for NIBRS reporting purposes. Local, state, and federal systems personnel (i.e., computer programmers, analysts, etc.) responsible for preparing magnetic media for submission to the FBI will find the following subjects covered in Volume 2:

  • Magnetic media specifications and explanations of record linkages, guidelines for determining what records to submit, and software logic for submitting complete versus partial incident reports.
  • Record layouts to indicate format requirements for data field positions.
  • Instructions for handling erroneous data detected on magnetic media submitted to the FBI.


Volume 4: Error Message Manual (December 1999)

Volume 4 contains designations of mandatory and optional data elements, data element edits, and error messages. Systems personnel responsible for preparing magnetic media submissions for the FBI will find the following information useful:

  • An explanation of mandatory, optional, common, and additional data elements as well as their requirements for entry.
  • Data element edits that detail all the software edits performed on submitted data.
  • Error numbers produced as a result of FBI error detection and the corresponding messages associated with them.


Addendum to the NIBRS Volumes
(Revised April 2002)

This publication presents four NIBRS recommendations accepted through the Criminal Justice Information Services Advisory Process. The recommendations are directed toward easing implementation for local agencies encountering difficulties complying with the full NIBRS requirements. In addition, the file reference card provides the planned approaches to implementation. It includes the relevant changes for affected reporting segments and the error numbers and messages resulting from implementing the recommendations.

Conversion of NIBRS Data to Summary Data (September 1999)

This manual explains in detail the procedures the FBI follows when it converts NIBRS data to Summary data so that they can be incorporated into the national crime database. The conversion procedures illustrated in this document use the 53 NIBRS data elements and their data values. The information should prove helpful to NIBRS agencies that want to replicate the FBI’s procedures in order to produce UCR system data for offenses, arrests, property types and values, clearances, and details of homicides. The conversion process allows agencies submitting data via NIBRS to provide statistics that may be compared to agencies submitting data via the Summary system. However, as the NIBRS program expands, the conversion process becomes less significant.

NIBRS Addendum for Submitting LEOKA Data (October 2002)

This document provides the new or modified NIBRS data values, entry requirements, error messages, and programming changes so that agencies can collect and enter LEOKA data via NIBRS.

Handbook for Acquiring a Records Management System (RMS) That Is Compatible With the NIBRS (May 2002)

Developed under the sponsorship of the FBI’s CJIS Division and the Bureau of Justice Statistics, this publication furnishes law enforcement agencies with instructions about preparing and conducting an RMS system acquisition and how to prepare an agency for conversion to the new system and to NIBRS. It includes lessons learned from other agencies and vendors and presents relevant templates and examples. In addition, the handbook includes an interactive cost model to assist an agency in analyzing the gross cost for implementing an automated system.

The following NIBRS publications are available upon request by contacting the Multimedia Productions Group, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Module D3, 1000 Custer Hollow Road, Clarksburg, West Virginia 26306-0157; telephone (304) 625-4995; facsimile (304) 625-5394; or e-mail at http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/ucr.

Volume 3: Approaches to Implementing an Incident-Based Reporting (IBR) System (July 1992)

(See State Program Bulletin 99-2, dated January 27, 1999, for additional information.)

Directed at systems personnel (i.e., computer programmers, analysts, etc.) responsible for developing an IBR system that will meet NIBRS’s reporting requirements, this manual contains suggested approaches to developing an IBR system, including a model incident report, standard data entry guide, data entry screens, and software design suggestions. The following information is addressed in Volume 3:

  • A sample NIBRS incident report.
  • A standard data entry guide.
  • Automated data entry methodology and screen formats to be used with the standard data entry guide.
  • Data entry screen formats to be used with the incident form currently used.
  • Implementation procedures and issues to be addressed by a participant before submitting NIBRS data.


Uniform Crime Reporting Handbook,
NIBRS Edition (1992)

This publication is available to assist participating agencies in understanding NIBRS policies and procedures. Though it does not contain the technical coding and data transmission requirements that govern NIBRS, the handbook addresses policy, the types of data to be reported, and reporting guidelines. Information covered in the NIBRS handbook includes the following:

  • An introduction to NIBRS and how to report crime using an incident-based system.
  • Definitions of Group A and Group B offenses.
  • The Group A Incident Report, the Group B Arrest Report, and the six segments for reporting (i.e., administrative, offense, property, victim, offender, and arrestee).
  • Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted.
  • Other UCR forms.
  • The basic crime indicators of volumes, rates, and trends and an explanation of community types.
  • An Offense Lookup Table for reference.