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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 82346 Find in a Library
Title: Training Course in the Analysis of Crime and the Criminal Justice System, Module 1 - Uniform Crime Reports - FBI
Author(s): W Newman
Date Published: Unknown
Format: Film
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The history, sources, publication, and shortcomings of the Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) are elucidated.
Abstract: The UCR is the oldest and most basic source of crime data. Collection was begun in 1930, and the FBI assumed administration of the reports in 1933. The information recorded derives from local police criminal incident records; currently, 13,000 reporting agencies contribute their data. 'Crime in the United States' is the annual publication in which these crime data are compiled; a quarterly release presents a breakdown of seven Index crimes according to population groups and geographic regions. UCR data can also be obtained by special request, which may take some time because most individual compilations are done manually. The UCR should not be used alone because it is a gross measure and not weighted for seriousness. Also, State data may differ from UCR data in timeliness and completeness. Two UCR counting schemes are used: violent crimes against persons are counted by victim, all others are counted by incident. Analysts should be aware of this UCR characteristic and recognize that combining robbery, for instance, with violent crimes will yield a result that represents a mixture of counting criteria. Furthermore, a counting hierarchy is observed, so that when a single incident is comprised of more that one offense, it is attributed only once -- and to the higher crime category. Finally, the UCR comprises only reported crimes and does not reflect the numbers of unreported incidents or statistics on arrest or disposition. A number of factors may bias use of the crime index, such as demographics which affect agency-to-agency comparisons. The crime rate is derived from the incidence per 100,000 population.
Index Term(s): Data analysis; Data collections; Index crimes; Statistical bias; Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program
Note: *This document is currently unavailable from NCJRS. 2 videotapes, total running time 30 minutes, black and white, 1 inch. Part of the training course in the Analysis of Crime and the Criminal Justice System. See also NCJ-82345-82355 and NCJ-82357 for other videotapes. There is no Module 10 in this series; it was a training exercise.
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