Applying Attribution Theory to Juvenile Delinquency Research Proposal by Nicky

A research proposal on how attribution theory can shed light on the causes of juvenile delinquency.
# 151029 | 1,443 words | 3 sources | APA | 2012 | US

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The paper explores the literature available on juvenile delinquency in combination with attribution theory and outlines the methodology of the proposed study. The paper explains that this study aims to reveal the factors that influence delinquency by asking the teenagers themselves about their perceptions of crime and criminal activity and the punishment involved.

Literature Review
Research Methodology and Findings

From the Paper:

"Johnson-Pynn, Fragaszy & Cummins-Sebree (2003) consider attribution theory in terms of comparative study. They for example suggest that the "theory of mind" attributes mental states to others. This concept, in combination to those mentioned above, is very important when applying attribution theory to a study of juvenile delinquency. Specifically, young persons will not only be probed for their perceptions of themselves, but also their perceptions of others. Often, cognitive study tends to focus only on self-perception, while a more balanced view that includes others in the world of the young person is largely discarded as either unimportant or irrelevant. This research will suggest that both the perception of the self and others play a vital role in the study of delinquency.
"Also helping to focus the study is Siegel & Welsh's work (2008), which suggests that juvenile delinquency is greatly influenced by external community influences. And indeed, the authors cite research to considerably substantiate this viewpoint (Siegel & Welsh, 2008, p. 350). Specifically, the authors note that the same phenomenon has proved to be present across the world, with studies showing that areas of high social instability tend to house schools with a high delinquency factor. In order to better understand this phenomenon, as mentioned above, it is suggested that individuals and groups be approached to investigate causes, perceptions and motivations on a multi-dimensional scale, as suggested by attribution theory."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Johnson-Pynn, Julie, Fragaszy, Dorothy M., & Cummins-Sebree, Sarah. (2003). CommonTerritories in Comparative and Developmental Psychology: Quest for Shared Means and Meaning in Behavioral Investigations. International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 16(1), . Retrieved from:
  • Siegel, Larry J. & Welsh, Brandon C. (2008). Juvenile Delinquency: Theory, Practice, and Law. Cengage Learning.
  • Wiener, Hannah L. (2009). Attribution Theory and the American Tort System. Duke University School of Law.

Cite this Research Proposal:

APA Format

Applying Attribution Theory to Juvenile Delinquency (2012, May 18) Retrieved February 19, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Applying Attribution Theory to Juvenile Delinquency" 18 May 2012. Web. 19 February. 2020. <>