Explaining the academic performance-delinquency relationship

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

45 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We use data from the National Education Longitudinal Survey to examine the relationship between academic performance and delinquency. We estimate the effects of grades in tenth grade on delinquency in twelfth grade, and then introduce controls for social bonds and self-control (teacher-rated effort). The findings indicate that the feedback that adolescents receive in the form of grades does not affect their delinquent behavior, that academic performance and delinquency have instead a spurious relationship. Our evidence suggests that this relationship is attributable primarily to the effects of individual differences in self-control, not to those of social bonds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-319
Number of pages21
JournalCriminology
Volume44
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2006

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delinquency
self-control
school grade
Individuality
performance
Longitudinal Studies
Education
adolescent
teacher
evidence
Self-Control
education

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law

Cite this

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Explaining the academic performance-delinquency relationship. / Felson, Richard B.; Staff, Jeremy.

In: Criminology, Vol. 44, No. 2, 01.05.2006, p. 299-319.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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AB - We use data from the National Education Longitudinal Survey to examine the relationship between academic performance and delinquency. We estimate the effects of grades in tenth grade on delinquency in twelfth grade, and then introduce controls for social bonds and self-control (teacher-rated effort). The findings indicate that the feedback that adolescents receive in the form of grades does not affect their delinquent behavior, that academic performance and delinquency have instead a spurious relationship. Our evidence suggests that this relationship is attributable primarily to the effects of individual differences in self-control, not to those of social bonds.

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