Research Problem Research Question Literature Review Methodology Future Direction Beyond the Project Questions
Social and economic ramifications: Bureau of Justice (2008) › 27% increase in inmate-on-inmate violence › 32% increase in inmate-on-staff violence › 52% of inmates in state prisons are incarcerated for violent offenses “Prisons are microcosms of free society.” –Dr. Gaston
Taxes (Gaes, 2008) › Vocational classes lowered taxpayer costs by $6,806 per inmate › General education classes lowered taxpayer costs by $5,306 per inmate Safer prison conditions (Gendreau & Keyes, 2001; Lovell & Jemelka, 1996)
Economic and Social Research Council recommends programs that: Teach prisoners to consider negative consequences of their actions Broaden perspectives Teach prisoners to see “ the big picture” Such programs will dramatically reduce violent behaviors.
Education has been shown in several studies to have an effect on violent acts. A higher education generally correlates to reduced violence Education also affects recidivism rates. (French and Gendreau, 2006; Gaes, 2008) But what changes in a person? What makes them less violent?
Will various treatment programs within a county prison or jail alter inmate beliefs in favor of nonviolence?
Which programs develop a statistically significant increase in nonviolent beliefs? Which aspects of these influential programs are responsible for this change?
Drive and social learning theories › Bandura’s Bobo dolls: “Most human behavior is learned observationally through models” (Bandura, 1977) Violent behavior is learned!
The Effect of Education on Adolescents - Frey, Ruchkin, Martin & Schwab-Stone, 2008 Increased educational attachment and involvement = decrease in the number of delinquent acts and violent beliefs We hope that these findings could be similar in a prison population Less Violence Creates a Safer Prison Environment - Gendreau & Keyes, 2001; Lovell & Jemelka, 1996 Less violence allows facility staff to focus on rehabilitation
Completing one or more treatment programs will shift a prisoner’s beliefs in favor of nonviolence. Null hypothesis: There is no relationship between treatment programs and beliefs held by prisoners.
Obtain access to a county prison and obtain volunteers Administer NVT Treatment Programs Re-administer N VT Determine which classes had the largest statistical change in NVT scores Commonalities determined
Assesses attitudes and behaviors through a 65 question survey Each question requires the student to choose between a nonviolent and violent option in various situations Least violent score: 36 Most violent score: 0 Studies have rated NVT to have highest validity
Experimental groups will participate in classes offered by the facility Control group consists of inmates who are enrolled in zero classes Two groups are not limited in size and are not expected to be equal
Currently: › Thesis proposal › Submit for IRB › Making contact with prison staff Summer & Fall 2009: › Data Collection Spring 2010: › Analysis - statistician › Possibly draft exercises › Start Drafting Thesis Fall 2010 & Spring 2011 › Thesis Paper and Thesis Defense
Hope to find beliefs of prisoners have changed Efficacy of possible exercises Reduction of recidivism