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NCJ Number: 136760 Find in a Library
Title: Education and Incarceration: An Examination of the Relationship Between Educational Achievement and Criminal Behavior
Journal: Journal of Correctional Education  Volume:43  Issue:1  Dated:(March 1992)  Pages:14-22
Author(s): G L Williamson
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 9
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The hypothesis that a poor educational system produces an increase in criminal behavior is examined through an evaluation of the existing evidence on relationships between intelligence and school achievement and between school achievement and criminal behavior. Research findings are related to the specific case of the State of Georgia, where despite the passage of the Quality Basic Education Act in 1984, prisons remain overcrowded and the State's educational problems remain unsolved.
Abstract: Educational achievement plays a vital role in many critical issues and Southern States seem to face an even more critical problem with regard to adult literacy. States such as Georgia continually face budget decisions which will impede or advance progress in the reform of the educational system. Although jail and prison inmates as a group are characterized by poor academic achievement, only one-third of eligible prisoners benefit from correctional educational programs. There is enough evidence that educational programs for inmates can reduce recidivism to warrant current policy attention and future study. While some research has concluded that low IQ and criminality or delinquency are positively related, there has been no proof of a direct causal link. The general conclusion is that the IQ should be interpreted as setting the stage for the intervention of other factors. Data collected on the IQ levels and educational achievements of Georgia inmates support post-1970 studies which conclude that the typical inmate is of average intelligence. However, for all the years reviewed, inmates coming into the system remained well below acceptable literacy levels. The author concludes that there must be more done at both the Federal and State levels to improve correctional education. Steps already being taken are described. 50 references
Main Term(s): Education-crime relationships; Inmate academic education
Index Term(s): Georgia (USA); Intelligence-crime relationships
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