Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A look into the minds of adolescent offenders: Executive functioning and self -control
by De Molli, Margaret Amy, Ph.D., Alliant International University, Fresno, 2009, 100; 3365028
Abstract (Summary)

Statistical analysis demonstrates that delinquent behavior and crimes are continuous; therefore, it becomes apparent that there is a persistent need to understand the causes of delinquency by exploring an individual's desire to engage in these unconventional behaviors along with the biological component of the developmental brain changes that an adolescent undergoes. The participants of this project were incarcerated youth convicted of a law violation and deemed delinquent. The hypothesis of this project was that the higher level of executive functioning an individual possesses then the higher levels of self-control he or she will possess. This hypothesis was supported. The level of participants' executive functioning demonstrated a significant relationship with self-control, meaning that as executive functioning increased so did the level of self-control.

An exploratory analysis was performed on the clinical scales that make up the BRI (Inhibit, Shift, Emotional Control, and Monitor) to determine the degree of impact that each has on self-control. The results revealed that Emotional Control is the most significant predictor of self-control.

A third analysis was performed to determine if the demographic variables significantly correlate with self-control; two demographic variables, age and education, significantly correlated with self-control. This means that age and level of education have a significant effect on an individual's level of self-control. For this reason a semipartial correlation was conducted in order to control for the effect that age and education have on self-control in order to verify the strength of self-control on executive functioning. Results of the semipartial correlation with age and education being held constant continued to yield a significant relationship between self-control and executive functioning.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: White, Dale
School: Alliant International University, Fresno
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 70/09, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Clinical psychology, Criminology
Keywords: Adolescent, Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function--Self-Report Version, Behavioral inhibition, Executive function, General theory of crime, Juvenile offenders, Self-control
Publication Number: 3365028
ISBN: 978-1-109-37163-5
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