There are very slight differences in their attitudes towards criminality as compared to non-college students. However the study also showed that college students are less likely to engage in criminal activities partly because their environment provides less opportunity for committing such offenses.
The purpose of the study is to determine whether college students are the appropriate subjects of research which deal with criminology. This study will be of interest to other researchers in the field of criminology as it might affect their theories and findings if college students are used and they turn out to be an inappropriate sample.
The data source is the National Youth Survey Series which is “one of the longest running and most extensive investigations into adolescent and young adult behaviors and attitudes in the world and consists of individuals in age groups pertinent to the research question at hand” (Wiecko 1187).
One of the limitations of the research is that it was not possible to determine who among the students attended different types of educational institutions. Another limitation is that the NYS is becoming obsolete so much so that it may not reflect the current trends in the study of criminology. The NYS data was collected in 1983 and the measures used may no longer be applicable at present. Since the research is based on self-reported behaviors, one tends to question the truthfulness of those answering the survey.
The research did not give information on the college and non-college student’s economic class or status. One believes that this data has an effect on the tendency to commit a crime. Furthermore, the study did not offer detailed information on the profile of the non-college students and how they were