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NCJ Number: 211232 
Title: Examining Bullying Among Institutionalized Young Offenders: Triangulation of Questionnaires and Focus Groups (From Bullying Among Prisoners: Innovations in Theory and Research, P 84-108, 2005, Jane L. Ireland, ed. -- See NCJ-211227)
Author(s): Graham Dyson
Date Published: 2005
Page Count: 25
Sponsoring Agency: Willan Publishing
Portland, OR 97213-3644
Sale Source: Willan Publishing
c/o ISBS, 5804 N.E. Hassalo Street
Portland, OR 97213-3644
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Book Chapter
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter reports on a study that directly compared structured questionnaires and focus groups in examining the nature and extent of bullying among a young-offender inmate population in Scotland.
Abstract: The current study was designed to remedy weaknesses of current research methods used to investigate bullying in prisons, i.e., the use of official records and questionnaire self-reports. The methodology used in the current study was to use focus groups of young-adult inmates in triangulation with a structured questionnaire. This chapter presents information on the quality and type of information obtained by each method of data collection, with emphasis on focus groups. Data were collected from inmates at three medium-security Scottish young-offender institutions. All of the institutions housed male inmates between the ages of 16 and 21. Questionnaires were used to obtain quantitative information about the nature and extent of bullying. A total of 707 completed questionnaires were obtained. Eleven focus groups, composed of 4 to 7 inmates, were conducted with volunteers. The study compared the quality, depth, and abundance of information on bullying obtained through the two data-collection methods. Although providing information similar to structured questionnaires, the focus groups had some advantages over questionnaires in terms of the nature and depth of information acquired, the speed of data collection, and an opportunity for observation of interactions among participants. Some limitations of focus groups, however, are restricted discourse due to group dynamics, difficulty in comparing focus group discussions, increased distraction, increased bias, and limited representativeness and generalizability of the information. 3 tables and 38 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile inmates
Index Term(s): Bullying; Inmate misconduct; Inmate personal security; Prison climate; Research methods
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