Rethinking the IQ-delinquency relationship: A longitudinal analysis of multiple theoretical models

Jean Marie McGloin, Travis C. Pratt, Jeff Maahs

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations

Abstract

Criminological research has consistently demonstrated a relationship between IQ and delinquency, yet scholars continue to debate the precise mechanisms by which IQ should have an effect on delinquent behavior. Although researchers typically view the IQ-delinquency relationship as a function of "school performance," additional explanations exist that have yet to be formally tested in conjunction with one another within the same analysis. Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY) we extend existing research by assessing the indirect effect of IQ on delinquency through three intervening processes: school performance, deviant peer pressure, and self-control. The results indicate strong support for the school performance model (especially when linked with self-control), yet considerable evidence exists of an indirect effect of IQ on delinquency through both deviant peer pressure and self-control. The implications for future theoretical development and integration are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)603-635
Number of pages33
JournalJustice Quarterly
Volume21
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2004

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Rethinking the IQ-delinquency relationship: A longitudinal analysis of multiple theoretical models'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this