Understanding and Knowledge of Crime Definitions

Understanding and Knowledge of Crime Definitions Writing Prompt: Understanding crime trends requires an appreciation of how data are collected, displayed, and interpreted, in addition to knowledge of crime definitions.

Understanding and Knowledge of Crime Definitions
Understanding and Knowledge of Crime Definitions

For this assignment, please select two forms of crime to analyze. One form should be a violent offense, and the other should be a non-violent/property offense. Provide a clear definition of each offense you are investigating, including the source for your definition. Then, demonstrate the current incidence and prevalence of the two forms of crime using a minimum of two major crime data sources. Discuss trends over the past 10 and 20 years for the offenses.

Total Points Available: 50

General Requirements:

  • Your data analysis assignment should be 2 single-spaced pages, in Times New Roman/Calibri or comparable 12-point font.
  • Your paper must include an alphabetized bibliography of the data sources you used, as well as in-text citations. Papers lacking a bibliography and in-text citations will automatically lose 5 points.
  • In this assignment, both form and content matter. That is, papers that are not proofread, have frequent errors, are unorganized, etc. will not receive high grades. If you have difficulty writing, please utilize the writing services at the library before handing in your paper.
  • Please upload a copy of your paper to Blackboard and bring a hard copy to class. If you do not upload a copy to Blackboard, 5 points will be automatically deducted from your score. Upload only one document (paper and bibliography should be in the same document).

Specific Requirements:

In your paper, please address each of the following questions/issues…

  • Identify the two forms of crime you are analyzing. Are there discrepancies in the two data sources regarding their definition? Has the definition changed over time?
  • How prevalent is each form of crime according to the most current data available? Do the two data sources differ in their estimates of prevalence or incidence?
  • What are the relative benefits and drawbacks of each of the data sources when analyzing the specific forms of crime you selected?
  • What trends are evident in each of the forms of crime? Are these trends related to definitional changes or other issues that may impact the picture of crime we get? Make sure to identify long term trends at the 10-year, and 20-year intervals.
  • What can we conclude about these two forms of crime given the data you have presented?

Please use these data sources:




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