Assignment 3: Measures of Crime
Measuring crime can be a difficult process. By its very nature, crime is something that goes undetected. Law enforcement has developed a variety of techniques to track crime, such as police reports and victim reports. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) uses the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program for tracking crime; it reports crime in more than one way. All crime reporting and tracking systems categorize crime and have certain limitations.
Measuring crime involves tracking statistics such as demographic information and moderator variables related to the crimes. Moderator variables are any third variable in a correlation that affects the relationship between the first two variables. For example, we may find that gender is related to violent crime with a higher percentage of males engaging in violent behavior. However, a moderator variable would be age, with the highest percentage of violent offenders being below the age of 30.