Monday, August 26, 2019

Research design in psychology week 4 Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 words

Research design in psychology week 4 - Essay Example To narrow down my area of interest into a specific branch of criminology I have picked the topic of juvenile crime and delinquency which analyses the acts committed against the law by underage individuals. Qualitative research encompasses the study of a concept or phenomena that needs to be understood because little research has been done on it (Creswell, 2009). Theories aid this research simply because they enable a researcher to form a null hypothesis, which is either proved or disproved by the research carried out. Look at the example of the study conduced by Brian A. Jacob and Lars Lefgren (2003) that gathered through questionnaires and interviews data from various schools and 29 jurisdictions across the country to conclude that the level of property crime committed by juveniles decreases by 14 percent on days when school was in session, but the level of violent crime increases by 28 percent on days when it is not. Building on this study I would analyze the concept of crime based on the general theory of crime that revolves on individual self control. According to Akers and Sellers, 2004, the self control theory marks the difference between an individuals (regardless of age) tendency to either commit a crime or refrain from it. Therefore the connection between ‘criminality’, which is to offend, and ‘crime,’ that refers to actual law being broken, is that of available opportunities (Gottfredson and Hirschi, 1990). Since low self control develops early in an individual’s life and results in an increased possibility of crime to base this theory on a research that through direct observation and the use of questionnaires targets samples of school going children will be a practical undertaking. This is because its application will lead to findings that can help develop practices which will help improve self control and hence avoid the possibility of them taking part in future criminal activities. Similarly for a quantitative resea rch on criminology the aim is to base the investigation on methods such as inductive statistics, evidence-based comparisons, ratios, demographics, meta-analysis, computer-based models etc (Gail Cohen). In quantitative research, Creswell point out (2009, p. 49) researchers often test theories as an explanation for answers to their questions . For example Craig S. Schwalb (2007) conducted a quantitative longitudinal meta analysis judging the probability of repeated offences by juvenile offenders and found that there was a positive correlation between individuals who indulged in substance abuse, family problems and peer delinquency. Correlation is a popular technique in psychology, including personality (Dr. C. George Boeree). The personality theories take into consideration biology (neurology), evolution and genetics, sensation and perception, motivation and emotion, learning and memory, developmental psychology etc. Keeping in mind this theory the aspect of the probability of repeat offences can be facilitated by developing personality tests to measure the personality traits of juvenile criminals. For example by the use of say an IQ test we can measure the average intelligence of juvenile delinquents and identify key personality traits and then correlate these with frequency or intensity of criminal activities. This will induce a level of objectivity in our research as we would know exactly what personality

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