ERIC Number: ED303746
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Aug
Reference Count: 0
A Longitudinal Analysis of Age of Onset Effects on Delinquency.
Tolan, Patrick H.; Thomas, Peter J.
This study is a re-analysis of four waves of data from the National Youth Survey (NYS) begun in 1976 on 1,725 adolescents and comprising a representative national sample. A subset of 423 subjects were selected for this study. Subjects were categorized into three delinquency onset groups: early onset (onset at age 12 years or younger); late onset (onset after age 12 years), and no-onset. The NYS data contained data on delinquency involvement, psychosocial conditions, and demographic characteristics. Analyses were undertaken to determine the impact of age on onset of delinquency on subsequent level, type, and persistence of participation in delinquency. With the exception of damaged property and minor assault, no significant differences between early and late onset groups were found as to type of crime. Early onset subjects, however, were more likely to engage in serious patterned delinquency and to do so chronically. No significant demographic differences were found, except that males were more likely than females to be in the early onset group. The early and late onset subjects scored poorly on all psychosocial scales and scored significantly poorer than did no-onset subjects. These results suggest age of onset may be an important risk determinant in delinquency research. (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association (96th, Atlanta, GA, August 12-16, 1988).