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Statistics for Criminology and Criminal Justice

Statistics for Criminology and Criminal Justice

Second Edition

February 2015 | 432 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

A Beginner’s Guide to Statistics in Criminology and Criminal Justice Careers


Statistics for Criminology and Criminal Justice, Second Edition is an introductory statistics text for undergraduate criminology and criminal justice majors. The topics and engaging presentation style are targeted to students who have a basic background in algebra but who have had little or no exposure to the study of statistics. The overarching goals of the book are to demonstrate to students that statistics used in criminal justice can be enlightening and eye-opening and, that pre-conceived notions of their academic inadequacies coming into the course are false.


The fully updated Second Edition includes new learning objectives and learning checks to help guide students through the material and ensure content understanding and retention. Coverage of the fundamental areas in statistics begins with descriptive statistics, moves into probability, and ends with regression to make the content easier for students to follow. By use of real data and research, emphasis is placed on balancing thoroughness with ease of understanding in order to show students the importance and relevance of statistics in their future criminal justice careers.

Preface to the Second Edition
About the Author
Part 1-Descriptive Statistics
Chapter 1-Introduction to the Use of Statistics in Criminal Justice and Criminology
Science: Basic Terms and Concepts

Types of Scientific Research in Criminal Justice and Criminology

Software Packages for Statistical Analysis

Organization of the Book

Chapter 1 Review Problems

Chapter 2-Types of Variables and Levels of Measurement
Units of Analysis

Independent and Dependent Variables

Relationships Between Variables: A Cautionary Note

Levels of Measurement

Chapter Summary

Chapter 2 Review Problems

Chapter 3-Organizing, Displaying, and Presenting Data
Data Distributions

Graphs and Charts

Grouped Data


Chapter Summary

Chapter 3 Review Problems

Chapter 4-Measures of Central Tendency
The Mode

The Median

The Mean

Using the Mean and Median to Determine Distribution Shape

Deviation Scores and the Mean as the Midpoint of the Magnitudes


Chapter Summary

Chapter 4 Review Problems

Chapter 5-Measures of Dispersion
The Variation Ratio

The Range

The Variance

The Standard Deviation

The Standard Deviation and the Normal Curve


Chapter Summary

Chapter 5 Review Problems

Part 2-Probability and Distributions
Chapter 6-Probability
Discrete Probability: The Binomial Probability Distribution

Continuous Probability: The Standard Normal Curve

Chapter Summary

Chapter 6 Review Problems

Chapter 7-Population, Sample, and Sampling Distributions
Empirical Distributions: Population and Sample Distributions

Theoretical Distributions: Sampling Distributions

Sample Size and the Sampling Distribution: The z and t Distributions

Chapter Summary

Chapter 7 Review Problems

Chapter 8-Point Estimates and Confidence Intervals
The Level of Confidence: The Probability of Being Correct

Confidence Intervals for Means with Large Samples

Confidence Intervals for Means with Small Samples

Confidence Intervals With Proportions and Percentages

Chapter Summary

Chapter 8 Review Problems

Part 3-Hypothesis Testing
Chapter 9-Hypothesis Testing: A Conceptual Introduction
Sample Statistics and Population Parameters: Sampling Error or True Difference?

Null and Alternative Hypotheses

Chapter Summary

Chapter 9 Review Problems

Chapter 10-Hypothesis Testing With Two Categorical Variables: Chi-Square
Conceptual Basis of the Chi-Square Test: Statistical Dependence and Independence

The Chi-Square Test of Independence

Measures of Association


Chapter Summary

Chapter 10 Review Problems

Chapter 11-Hypothesis Testing With Two Population Means or Proportions
Two-Population Tests for Differences Between Means: t Tests

Two-Population Tests for Differences Between Proportions


Chapter Summary

Chapter 11 Review Problems

Chapter 12-Hypothesis Testing With Three or More Population Means: Analysis of Variance
ANOVA: Different Types of Variances

When the Null Is Rejected: A Measure of Association and Post Hoc Tests


Chapter Summary

Chapter 12 Review Problems

Chapter 13-Hypothesis Testing With Two Continuous Variables: Correlation
Beyond Statistical Significance: Sign, Magnitude, and Coefficient of Determination


Chapter Summary

Chapter 13 Review Problems

Chapter 14-Introduction to Regression Analysis
One Independent Variable and One Dependent Variable: Bivariate Regression

Adding More Independent Variables: Multiple Regression

Ordinary Least Squares Regression in SPSS

When the Dependent Variable Is Not Continuous and Normally Distributed: Alternatives to OLS

Chapter Summary

Chapter 14 Review Problems

Appendix A—Review of Basic Mathematical Techniques
Appendix B—The Standard Normal (z) Distribution
Appendix C—t Distribution
Appendix D—Chi-Square (?²) Distribution
Appendix E—F Distribution
Answers to Learning Checks
Answers to Review Problems


Instructor Resource Site
The password-protected Instructor Resource Site includes the following:

·  A Microsoft® Word® test bank is available containing multiple choice, true/false, short answer, and essay questions for each chapter. The test bank provides you with a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity for editing any question and/or inserting your own personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding.

·  Editable, chapter-specific Microsoft® PowerPoint® slides offer you complete flexibility in easily creating a multimedia presentation for your course. Highlight essential content, features, and artwork from the book.

·  Sample course syllabi for semester and quarter courses provide suggested models for use when creating the syllabi for your courses.

·  EXCLUSIVE! Access to certain full-text SAGE journal articles that have been carefully selected for each chapter. Each article supports and expands on the concepts presented in the chapter. This feature also provides questions to focus and guide student interpretation. Combine cutting-edge academic journal scholarship with the topics in your course for a robust classroom experience.

·  Web resources are included for further research and insights.

Chapter activities for individual or group projects provide lively and stimulating ideas for use in and out of class reinforce active learning

Student Study Site

The open-access Student Study Site includes the following:

  • Mobile-friendly eFlashcards reinforce understanding of key terms and concepts that have been outlined in the chapters.
  • Mobile-friendly web quizzes allow for independent assessment of progress made in learning course material.
  • EXCLUSIVE! Access to certain full-text SAGE journal articles that have been carefully selected for each chapter. Each article supports and expands on the concepts presented in the chapter. This feature also provides questions to focus and guide student interpretation. Combine cutting-edge academic journal scholarship with the topics in your course for a robust classroom experience.
  • Web resources are included for further research and insights.
  • Data-sets reinforce concepts from the book and provide real-world application

“Dr. Gau’s Statistics for Criminology and Criminal Justice text is excellent…the book is logically organized, well written, easily understandable, contains relevant examples and end-of-chapter exercises, and uses SPSS.”

Ayana Conway, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor at Virginia State University

“A nice textbook for criminal justice students who are new to statistics.  It is thorough yet concise.  The price is certainly likely to win over students.  Well done!”

Dr. Matthew D. Fetzer
Shippensburg University

“Authoritative yet, clear, succinct, and engaging. It covers all the relevant concepts, and it covers them well.”

Anthony W. Hoskin, PhD.
University of Texas of the Permian Basin

“The specific CJ examples help students to connect the material to something that is real.  It becomes more than just a math problem and instead they see it as a way to answer a specific research question in the field. This book does that better than any others I’ve seen.”

Nicole L. Smolter
California State University, Los Angeles

“I have already adopted this book, and I plan to continue using it.  I have used at least four other statistics books over the years, and this one is superior.” 

Brian Stults
Florida State University

“The SPSS tutorials are excellent”

Carlos E. Posadas, Ph.D.
New Mexico State University

New Course material still undecided.

Dr Sherill Veen Morris
Criminal Justice Dept, Mississippi Valley State Univ
January 8, 2016

Book is too complicated for my undergrad students while too fundamental for my grad students. Its just isn't a good fit for my students. That being said, this is an excellent book for a grad student that has never been introduced to real statistical models.

Dr Mark Rubin
Criminal Justice Dept, Sul Ross State University
September 22, 2015

Better than the text I used last semester and focuses specifically on crime and criminal justice. I am hoping that this will get students to see the utility of the examples more.

Dr Jon Maskaly
Criminal Justice Dept, University Of Illinois-Chicago
April 5, 2015

Its a great source of information and very well explained. I love the review exercises and checks. It is easily understood for beginners.

Professor Anita Black
Criminal Justice, King College
April 4, 2015

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 6

Chapter 10

Jacinta Michele Gau

Jacinta M. Gau, Ph.D., is an associate professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at the University of Central Florida. She received her doctorate from Washington State University in 2008. Her primary areas of research are policing and criminal justice policy, and she has a strong quantitative background. Dr. Gau’s work has appeared in journals such as Justice Quarterly, British Journal of Criminology, Criminal Justice and Behavior, Crime & Delinquency, Criminology & Public Policy, Police Quarterly, Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, and the Journal of Criminal Justice Education. In... More About Author

Also available as a South Asia Edition.

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ISBN: 9781483378459