Dennison, Christopher R. (2018). Intergenerational educational pathways and instrumental crime, violent crime, and illegal drug use across the life course. Journal of Crime and Justice.
ABSTRACTIn light of the growing enrollment among first-generation college students, as well as the rising concern of downward educational mobility in the U.S., increased attention has been given to the relationship between intergenerational educational pathways (i.e., a comparison of one?s attained education to their parents? attainments) and crime. The few studies in existence, however, have only examined general involvement in crime, and with mixed findings. Drawing on data from The National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, this study examines the associations between intergenerational educational mobility and instrumental crime, violent crime, and illegal drug use. It also tests whether the relationships operate indirectly through familial transitions, occupational status, economic hardship, and social-psychological well-being in young adulthood. Results broadly suggest that upward educational mobility is associated with decreases in crime, particularly for instrumental crime and illegal drug use, whereas downward mobility is associated with increases in all crime types. The relationships are also partially explained by adult status characteristics during adulthood. Findings are discussed as they relate to the importance of educational mobility in contemporary criminology.
Journal of Crime and Justice
Dennison, Christopher R.
August 28, 2018