skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 200645 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Child Maltreatment and Adjustment to Juvenile Correctional Institutions
Journal: Criminal Justice and Behavior  Volume:30  Issue:3  Dated:June 2003  Pages:374-396
Author(s): Angela R. Gover; Doris Layton MacKenzie
Date Published: June 2003
Page Count: 23
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 96-SC-LX-0001; 1999-IJ-CX-0051
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article examines the impact of childhood maltreatment on self-reported levels of anxiety and depression among youths in correctional facilities.
Abstract: The experience of childhood maltreatment is widely regarded as a risk factor for juvenile delinquency. Childhood maltreatment includes physical abuse, sexual abuse, psychological abuse, neglect, and witnessing violence among family members. The type and frequency of abuse has an impact on the consequences of maltreatment. The authors questioned whether childhood maltreatment would have consequences for juveniles’ psychological adjustment within correctional facilities. In order to probe this research question, the authors administered a survey questionnaire to 509 juveniles residing in 48 correctional institutions throughout the United States. The questionnaires focused on measures of childhood maltreatment, prior commitments, individual demographics, and perceptions of the correctional institution. Psychological adjustment was measured through a six-item summated scale that measured anxiety and depression. Results of statistical analyses indicated partial support for the hypothesis that childhood maltreatment is significantly associated with higher levels of anxiety and depression among youths in correctional facilities. The relationship between maltreatment and adjustment did not vary by type of correctional institution, indicating that boot camp-type facilities are not more harmful to mental health when compared to traditional correctional facilities. The authors contend that general mental health issues are important within correctional facilities and that therapeutic programming within these institutions should be specifically targeted to youths with histories of childhood maltreatment. Notes, references
Main Term(s): Adjustment to prison; Child abuse; Child emotional abuse and neglect
Index Term(s): Child abuse as delinquency factor; Childhood depression; Correctional institutions (juvenile)
Note: Dataset may be archived by the NIJ Data Resources Program at the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.