Page Share Cite Suggested Citation: The Growth of Incarceration in the United States:
Criminology and Criminal Justice Research: Which of the particular research methods to use is entirely contingent upon the question being studied. Research questions typically fall into four categories of research: Descriptive research attempts to define and describe the social phenomena under investigation.
Exploratory research seeks to identify the underlying meaning behind actions and individual behavior. Explanatory research seeks to identify the cause- s and effect s of social phenomena. Evaluation research seeks to determine the effects of an intervention on individual behavior.
These four areas of research are not mutually exclusive; rather, they are designed to be used interactively in order to gain a deeper understanding of the question under investigation. With this background, the purpose of this entry will be to introduce the reader to the two major research paradigms and issues that organize the field of criminology and criminal justice: After describing the different research methodologies several issues related to internal and external validity are identified that are important to bear in mind when assessing the adequacies of distinct research methodologies.
The entry closes by highlighting what appears to be the most promising research strategy for criminology and criminal justice.
Quantitative research methods Quantitative research methods are typically concerned with measuring criminological or criminal justice reality. To understand this process several terms must first be identified.
Concepts are abstract tags placed on reality that are assigned numerical values, thus making them variables. Variables are then studied to examine patterns of relation, covariation, and cause and effect. At the most basic level, there exists at least one dependent variable and one independent variable.
The dependent variable is commonly referred to as the outcome variable. This is what the researcher is attempting to predict. The independent variable is commonly referred to as the predictor variable, and it is the variable that causes, determines, or precedes in time the dependent variable Hagan.
Consider the following examples. Criminological theorists may be interested in studying the relationship between impulsivity independent variable and criminal behavior dependent variable. In studying such a relationship, scholars create a summated scale of items that is designed to indirectly measure the concept of impulsivity.
Then, this impulsivity scale is used to predict involvement in criminal behavior. Criminal justice scholars may be interested in studying the effects of a mandatory arrest policy independent variable on future patterns of domestic violence dependent variable.
In studying such a question, scholars typically evaluate the effect of an arrest, compared to some other sanction, on the future criminal behavior of the arrestee. Thus, quantitative research methods involve a pattern of studying the relationship s between sets of variables to determine cause and effect.
Three criteria are needed to establish causality. The first is association. That is, the independent and dependent variables must be related to one another.NIJ Journal Issue No.
Preparing for the Future: Criminal Justice in Skip to Main Content National Institute of Justice - r-bridal.com The Coevolution of Crime and Justice. Bryan Vila observes that criminals, like viruses, evolve over time and change as their potential victims take preventive measures. Building the Research Infrastructure The relevance of these proposals for future research on crime trends to assessments of crime control policy will be limited in the absence of a substantial upgrading in the nationâ s capacity to monitor crime trends.
The National Academies Press.
Needleman, Herbert. (). Rosenfeld, Richard.
The purpose of this “Future Trends in Policing” project was to ask police leaders to take a step back from their daily operations and everyday crises, and consider the emerging issues that are changing policing in the most fundamental ways.
of these volumes is Measurement and Analysis of Crime and Justice, sought to explore the current knowledge, trends, and future directions in the measurement and analysis of crime and the criminal justice system, MEASUREMENT AND ANALYSIS OF CRIME AND JUSTICE I N T R O D U C T I O N 1. It is hard to think about the future of crime trends because current conditions can change rapidly as some criminologist believe that crime rates.
Critical Criminal Justice Issues U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs the assembled scholars of criminology for their urgent assistance in dealing with some of the major crime and criminal justice issues facing the Nation and, hence, the Administration.
Based on the above and other current .