National Crime Survey

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National Crime Survey

By | Feb. 2011
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Would you answer honestly if participating in a national crime survey asking about your criminal behavior, including any drinking and drug use? Yes I would participate in the survey. I would be honest because I have nothing to hide and no reason to lie. But for some they don’t want people to know what crimes they have committed or they lie about the extent of the crimes. But I think it’s because they want to be seen in a “good light”. A good term for this is called “Social Desirability Bias” which means that you reply in a manner that is socially acceptable and desirable.[1] The main purpose of this study is to allow the participants to describe the crimes in their own words instead of implying from observing participants.[2] Honesty in these self-report studies help many different groups to better understand crime and criminal behavior. They use these reports to gather information to put them into statistics. The reports that are used are collected from the NIBRS (National Incident-Based Reporting System) and NCVS (National Crime Victimization Survey) and published by FBI in their yearly UCR ( Uniform Crime Report.) In some forms of deviance self-report studies have been proven better than police reports (ex: minor offenses among adolescents.) In a variety of social-psychological studies these reports have been proven very useful (ex: monitoring of subjective feelings or states is at issue) [3] Dishonesty in these reports will not have a good affect on the statistics. Often asking subjects about their behaviors in the past can reveal more serious crimes but may miss the minor acts of crime. People have a tendency of remembering the major crimes (ex: murder, theft, kidnapping, robbery.) But often times forget the minor crimes (ex: speeding, minor assaults, public intoxication.)[4] People also might feel that they need to exaggerate the detail, or they are too embarrassed to share their private details. The data should be interpreted with some caution. There is...
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