SAGE Journal Articles

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Journal Article 1: Miller, B., & Morris, R. G. (2014). Virtual peer effects in social learning theory. Crime and Delinquency, 62, 1543–1569.

Abstract: The current study examines the differential influence of face-to-face and virtual peers in predicting digital and traditional offending among college students through the lens of social learning theory (SLT). SLT components are explored to discern whether the theory holds for virtual peers, as it has for face-to-face peers using a structural equation modeling framework, thus making a substantial contribution to the social learning literature. Findings provide some support for SLT for both virtual only peers and the face-to-face peers model in relation to digital as well as traditional offending. In addition, findings suggest that virtual peer associations may be as important as traditional peer associations in explaining certain types of deviant behavior.

Journal Article 2: Allen, A. N., & Lo, C. C. (2010). Drugs, guns, and disadvantaged youth: Co-occurring behavior and the code of the street. Crime and Delinquency, 58, 032–953.

Abstract: Guided by Anderson’s theory of the code of the street, this study explored social mechanisms linking individual-level disadvantage factors with the adoption of beliefs grounded in the code of the street and with drug trafficking and gun carrying—the co-occurring behavior shaping violence among young men in urban areas. Secondary data were employed from a sample of male inmates and a sample of male high school students. Data analysis indicated that the social disadvantage factor absent father significantly predicted this co-occurring behavior in the inmate sample, whereas the social disadvantage factor history of expulsion did so in the student sample. In both samples, race and adopting beliefs about gun carrying from the code of the street were significant predictors of drug trafficking and gun carrying. The results do not suggest that such code-based beliefs’ impact on drug trafficking and gun carrying differs by race. Implications for social policy are discussed.

Journal Article 3: Kingston, B., Huizinga, D., & Elliott, D. S. (2009). A test of social disorganization theory in high-risk urban neighborhoods. Youth and Society, 41, 53–79.

Abstract: Although there is a growing body of research based on social disorganization theory that relates the neighborhood context to juvenile crime and delinquency, it is unknown whether neighborhood social processes operate in a similar way across all types of disadvantaged neighborhoods. It is possible that some social processes are unique to economically depressed areas. This research attempts to explain theoretically and test empirically the relationships between neighborhood social structure, social processes, delinquent opportunity structures, and rates of adolescent delinquency among structurally disadvantaged neighborhoods. The hypotheses are tested using neighborhood-level parent and youth data from 44 Denver neighborhoods. A series of regression models are constructed to estimate the effects of the neighborhood on rates of delinquency. The results show that for this high-risk sample the most consistent predictor of rates of problem behavior is youths' perceptions of limited opportunities for the future.