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Lecture 10

CCJS 300 Lecture Notes - Lecture 10: United States Parole Commission, Chi-Squared Test, Semantic Differential

Criminology and Criminal Justice
Course Code
CCJS 300
Alan Lehman

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-Levels of measurement: all variables may be classified as belonging to a particular level of
-Nominal: categorical, mutually exclusive categories, t-test or chi square test used when
assuming an IV
-Ordinal: may rank order the variable responses, numbers imply some distance (i.e.
attitude scales, spearman rank, order correlation)
-Interval: equal intervals between values of a variable (i.e. temperature scale, IQ tests)
-Ratio: true zero-point, equal distances between, advanced techniques such as correlation
and regression used
-Scaling procedures: using more than one question to measure something
-Why use scaling?
-May be hard if we just use one question
-Good for ordinal level measurement
-Scales & indices are efficient for data analyses
-Useful in our understanding of measurement in general
-The mean is an efficient measure of central tendency
-Distinction between scales & indices
-Index: constructed through accumulation of scores on individual attributes (similar to a
-Scale: assignment of scores to patterns of attributes, may have an intensity structure
-How to devise multi-question scales
-All questions relevant to variable measured
-Evenly weighted
-Use interval or ratio level variables if possible
-All questions coded consistently & correctly
-Arbitrary scales
-Ex: figure 10.1 pg. 226
-The UCR, especially the index offenses list, is an arbitrary scale
-Arbitrary: unweighted
-Attitude scales
-Three major types:
-Thurstone scales: expert judges, equal appearing intervals”
-Likert scales: most commonly used, 1 = strongly disagree, 2, 3, 4, 5
-Guttman scales: unidimensional”
-Other scaling procedures
-Q sort: newer variation on Thurstone
-Semantic differential: 7- or 9-point bipolar rating scales, Good_ _ _ _x _ Bad, factor
analysis, get 3 dimensions: evaluation, potency, oriented activity
-Other variations, lots of different scales out there
-Crime seriousness scales: try to assign weightings to different crimes
-Types of seriousness scales
-Simple rating scales (1-9)
-Magnitude scales: Sellin-Wolfgang index (1966)
-Prediction scales
-Salient factor score: used by U.S. parole commission
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