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Introduction. CJ601. Research in CJ. Consuming vs. producing research Evaluating research—see example p. 4-5 Knowledge —agreement, common sense crime victimization and the elderly punishment severity and deterrence. Research. Knowledge that is the result of empirical research

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research in cj
Research in CJ
  • Consuming vs. producing research
  • Evaluating research—see example p. 4-5
  • Knowledge
  • —agreement, common sense

crime victimization and the elderly

punishment severity and deterrence

  • Knowledge that is the result of empirical research
  • Empirical—based on systematic observation
  • Example: Differential association
errors in observation
Errors in observation
  • Inaccurate observation
  • Overgeneralizing
  • Selective observation

Adolescent sex offenders and planning skills—more complicated than thought

Illogical reasoning

Superstition, gambler’s fallacy

politics and cj
Politics and CJ
  • Controversy over crime
  • “Liberals” vs. “conservatives”
  • Death penalty
  • Racial profiling
  • War on Drugs
  • Guns and crime
  • Prisons as country clubs
social patterns
Social patterns
  • Search for regularities
  • Example: most common pattern is that males kill males, least common pattern is female-female
  • Crime in the US tends to be intraracial
  • There are exceptions to the patterns
  • The pattern tells us what is more common
  • Probabilities (odds, percentages for ex)
  • Idiographic vs. nomothetic
  • Idiographic—a case study, for example
  • Charles Manson
  • Serial killers
  • Might thoroughly explain a case
  • Nomothetic—try to explain a class of events. There will be exceptions or cases that don’t fit
  • Attributes are characteristics, quality we might use to describe someone
  • Variables are logical groupings of attributes
  • Gender—variable, attributes are male and female
  • Unemployed, work part time, work full time are attributes of employment status
  • Sentence might be the variable, attributes could include fine, probation, jail, prison
  • Independent and dependent variables
  • One variable (IV) has an effect on another (DV)
  • Does level of supervision (IV) affect delinquency (DV)?
  • Other examples?
  • Inductive: specific to the general, observations to pattern
  • Durkheim (father of sociology)
  • Deductive: testing a general idea
  • Social capital and crime
  • Peer pressure and crime
types of data
Types of data
  • Qualitative—descriptive
  • Interviews and observations
  • Quantitative—measuring in terms of numbers
  • Qualitative “religious”
  • Quantitative—church attendance, amount of time reported praying, reading religious works, etc, self-ratings, ratings of others
crime rates in the us
Crime rates in the US
  • Rise beginning in the late 1950s
  • Continuing into the mid 1980s, began to level off, with some increase into the 1990s
  • Declines in the 1990s to the present
  • NYC, decline in homicide by 2/3 from early 1990s to 2002
  • Why?
basis for comparison
Basis for comparison
  • General decline in crime in the US, not just New York city
  • International comparisons: crime also increased and decreased in other industrialized nations, even though rates vary from country to country, and our violent crime rates are higher
  • Why?
  • Comparisons force us to look at various possibilities that might not otherwise be considered
  • Ex: Comparisons of crime rates and incarceration rates, by state or with other countries
  • Ex: guns and crime
policy implications
Policy implications
  • Crime more common among the young, declines with age
  • Supported by all 3 measures of crime
  • Interviews of offenders
  • Longitudinal studies
  • Common pattern, some exceptions
  • Cannot be entirely explained by incarceration
  • What are the implications for long prison sentences?
  • 3 strikes and you’re out laws?
  • In deciding policy what are some other considerations besides this research?