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Gepubliceerd in: Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 4/2013

01-05-2013

Sex and Age Differences in the Risk Threshold for Delinquency

Auteurs: Thessa M. L. Wong, Rolf Loeber, Anne-Marie Slotboom, Catrien C. J. H. Bijleveld, Alison E. Hipwell, Stephanie D. Stepp, Hans M. Koot

Gepubliceerd in: Research on Child and Adolescent Psychopathology | Uitgave 4/2013

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Abstract

This study examines sex differences in the risk threshold for adolescent delinquency. Analyses were based on longitudinal data from the Pittsburgh Youth Study (n = 503) and the Pittsburgh Girls Study (n = 856). The study identified risk factors, promotive factors, and accumulated levels of risks as predictors of delinquency and nondelinquency, respectively. The risk thresholds for boys and girls were established at two developmental stages (late childhood: ages 10–12 years, and adolescence: ages 13–16 years) and compared between boys and girls. Sex similarities as well as differences existed in risk and promotive factors for delinquency. ROC analyses revealed only small sex differences in delinquency thresholds, that varied by age. Accumulative risk level had a linear relationship with boys’ delinquency and a quadratic relationship with girls’ delinquency, indicating stronger effects for girls at higher levels of risk.
Voetnoten
1
In the literature a distinction is made between promotive and protective factors. Protective factors refer to factors that moderate the effect of risk factors on problem behavior. There should be an interaction effect with risk factors to be denoted a protective factor (see for example Rutter 1987). In our study we refer to factors that directly decrease the probability of delinquency, there is no need for interaction with risk factors. In line with previous literature, we refer to these factors as promotive factors.
 
2
The large number of tests is done to create a subset of variables on which to run a comprehensive analysis, to filter out those that are not relevant. Subsequently, boys and girls are compared. So, while this increases the risk for type I errors because of the multiple testing, this occurs for boys as well as girls. For that reason, the comparison is still valid.
 
3
Sensitivity and specificity at the selected threshold for late childhood delinquency were respectively 0.57 and 0.69 for boys and respectively 0.74 and 0.63 for girls.
 
4
Sensitivity and specificity at the selected threshold for adolescent delinquency were respectively 0.47 and 0.85 for boys and respectively 0.67 and 0.74 for girls.
 
5
These results are not presented here, but are available from the first author.
 
6
See footnote 5.
 
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Metagegevens
Titel
Sex and Age Differences in the Risk Threshold for Delinquency
Auteurs
Thessa M. L. Wong
Rolf Loeber
Anne-Marie Slotboom
Catrien C. J. H. Bijleveld
Alison E. Hipwell
Stephanie D. Stepp
Hans M. Koot
Publicatiedatum
01-05-2013
Uitgeverij
Springer US
Gepubliceerd in
Research on Child and Adolescent Psychopathology / Uitgave 4/2013
Print ISSN: 2730-7166
Elektronisch ISSN: 2730-7174
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10802-012-9695-7