3 Types of Crime Measurement

Topics: Juvenile delinquency, Crime, Uniform Crime Reports Pages: 3 (1016 words) Published: May 7, 2006
Criminologist attempt to determine the extent and nature of delinquency using three types of measurement. Uniform Crime Reports, victimization surveys and self report studies all have similar purposes of concluding the trends in different crimes and suggesting the attention of problematic issues. Although, theses types of crime measurement all have the same aim, results vary tremendously between them. Each type of measurement is conducted by a different group that hold their own techniques of gathering information.

In the United States, the Uniform Crime Report has been the most relied upon. The FBI gathers all their information from police agencies around the world. The results come from recorded police reports which collect data on about 95% of the population. The UCR breaks down crimes into part 1 and part 2 offenses. Part 1 offenses include eight crimes being either violent or property offenses. These are the more serious crimes, while part 2 offenses include all other minor crimes except for traffic violations.

While the UCR measures the extent of crime through police reports, victimization surveys view crime through interviewing people about their experiences as victims. The Bureau of Justice Statistics conducts interviews on a national sample of households. The results for each household remains in the sample for a few years. The victimization survey measures only part 1 index crimes and excludes homicide and arson because the victims are impossible to interview or very difficult to account for.

The third way of measuring crime is through self report surveys. Anonymous questionnaires are usually distributed amongst juveniles in places such as a school setting. The questionnaire relies on the individual's honesty in admitting his/her own criminal acts. Similar to victims surveys and police reports, self report surveys also adds its own distinct dimension to our knowledge about crime.

Being each way of measuring crime looks at...
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