- For Teachers
Drug use and crime is an interest for Criminologist. Criminology research examines the impacts that drug use has put on society. People get addicted to drugs and do what ever they have to support their addictions. Drug users resort to unconventional means of obtaining money for their drug problem like stealing, prostitution, gambling to find quick money. The impact of drugs does not end just with the user; it involves the criminal justice system as well. Drug users are put in jail for their criminal activity in connection with their addiction needs. This paper will illustrate the variables between heroin users and criminality.
Two quantitative variables expected to show a positive correlation are heroin use which is psychophysiological and the amount of time searching for heroin, which is a behavioral. A person who may start to use heroin will spend more time in search of the drug to fill the addiction need. A survey could be done on a hundred patients randomly chosen from a drug clinic. The survey would be a fixed-format self-report to include example question like: Do you use heroin? Yes or No. How much time do you spend daily in search of heroin? Answers could be a range of hours from one to twenty-four hours.
The second positive quantitative variables expected to show a correlation are dependency rate which is psychophysiological and criminal activity which is behavioral. The amount of dependency could be measured by the amount of money needed to buy heroin. As the demand for dependency goes up the amount of money is needed to support that addiction. Criminal activity could be measured in the number of arrests due to drug related crimes. A fixed-format self report survey could show correlated results in the different questions being asked like: Have you been arrested for heroin use? How much heroin do you need to use in a day?
The third are two negative linear correlation variables of money needed for heroin and the amount of time spent at work. Both variables are a behavioral measure in the frequency, duration, and intensity. As the money needed for heroin increases rapidly the amount of time spent at work decreases. Due to the demand for money to buy heroin an addict will resort to more non-conventional means to obtain heroin. In administering a fixed-format self-report survey to heroin users the following questions could be asked: How much money they spent on heroin weekly and how many days they were absent from their conventional job?
Fourth, two quantitative negative variables expected to show a linear correlation are criminal activity which is behavioral and a self control decrease which is psychophysiological. Criminal records would measure the criminal activity increase in how often the heroin user engages in property crime. Self control would be measured by violence during these thefts. Questioning heroin users about their criminal records could be done in a fixed-format self-report survey and the violence during these theft offenses could be measured by a free-format self-report. Questions may be asked about how many times they were arrested for property crime due to needing money for heroin. Further, questions about how they feel about their self control in avoiding illegal activity to obtain money for heroin.
Fifth, quantitative variables expected to show a independent relationship are the number of shoes owned by a heroin user and the amount of food in their refrigerator. These are non-correlations variables and the survey would be a fixed-format self-report. Questions that relate to independent variables could help with reactivity to throw off the participant in what is really being measured in the survey. Asking a heroin user about the number of shoes and the amount of food they have might give them the impression that the researcher is acquiring about money. Even though the two numbered variables have nothing to due with each other or with what is being researched.
Finally, two quantitative variables expected to show a curvilinear relationship are as heroin use increases, criminal sanctions increase from low to moderate levels. The perception of fairness in the law provides treatment and rehabilitation efforts. However, as heroin use further increases from moderate to high levels, people’s perception decrease about the fairness involved with the laws. For instance the death penalty related to drug dealers. When criminal sanctions are increased from moderate to high levels, people’s perception of the law being fair decreases and that law tends to be applied less. People’s perception could be measured on a free-format self-report scale about how excessive do they feel drug laws are. This would be a psychophsiological measurement. Measuring heroin use with the increase sanctions could be measured on a fixed-format self-report survey. This would be done on what the level of offense in relation to the heroin use on a participants arrest record. This would be a behavioral measurement.