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NCJ Number: 81802 Find in a Library
Title: Problems in Ratio Correlation - The Case of Deterrence Research
Journal: Social Forces  Volume:60  Issue:3  Dated:(March 1982)  Pages:791-810
Author(s): C H Logan
Date Published: 1982
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
University of Connecticut Research Foundation
US Dept of Health, Education, and Welfare
Rockville, MD 20857
Grant Number: MH 24574-01
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Potential problems in ratio correlation cannot be resolved outside a particular substantive context. Within the context of deterrence research, several approaches are examined: the 'conceptual-meaning' resolution, the Pearsonian approximation formula and null comparison, simulation techniques, decomposition into component covariances, part correlation, and the use of residual scores.
Abstract: A simulation experiment shows that when the terms used in the measures of certainty of imprisonment and crime rate are randomly scrambled, the resulting ratios correlate in a manner comparable to what occurs with the data in their original form. These scrambled-data correlations, however, are due purely to artifactual effects of the common term. The most useful test for the existence of this common-term artifact appears to be the technique of part correlation. With empirical imprisonment data, the part correlations are lower than the zero-order correlations, supporting the possibility that the original correlations may have been at least partially artifactual. (Social Forces and author abstract)
Index Term(s): Deterrence; Research methods
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