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This study investigated mutuality between peer group pressure and delinquent behavior among adolescents, 88 participants comprising 38 (27 males and 11 females delinquents and 50 (25 males and 25 females) non-delinquents were sampled. The participants are between the ages of 15-18 years with a mean age of 16.1 and stand deviation of 4.23 was used for this study. The delinquents were selected from the population of adolescents in custody at the welfare Department of Nigeria Prisons Service Abakaliki while the non-delinquents were selected from the population of University Secondary School using available sampling technique both in Abakaliki urban A 22 -item questionnaire with a multiple type of response format designed to measure peer pressure and proneness to delinquency was used. Items 1-12 measure peer pressure, while items .13-22 measure proneness to delinquency. Survey research design was adopted and Pearson product moment correlation coefficient statistics revealed that a significant relationship between peer group pressure and delinquent behavior r (36) =.41, P<.05, also, a significant relationship exist between gender and delinquent behaviour level of significance r(48) = .33; P<.05, among adolescents. The findings were discussed in relation to literature reviewed and recommendations were made.
Background of the Study
Juvenile delinquency refers to antisocial or illegal behaviour by children or adolescents, (Macmillan Dictionary for Students Macmillan, 1981). Most legal systems prescribe specific procedures for dealing with juveniles, such as juvenile detention centers. There are a multitude of different theories on the causes of crime, most if not all of which can be applied to the causes of youth crime. Youth crime is an aspect of crime which receives great attention from the news media and politicians. The level and types of youth crime can be used by commentators as an indicator of the general state of morality and law and order in a country, and consequently youth crime can be the source of moral panics, (Eadie & Morley 2003).
Theories on the causes of youth crime can be viewed as particularly important within criminology. This is firstly because crime is committed disproportionately by those aged between fifteen and twenty-five, (Walklate, 2003). Secondly, by definition any theories on the causes of crime Will focus on youth crime, as adult criminals will have likely started offending when they were young.
Juvenile Delinquent is a person who is typically under the age of 18 and commits an act that otherwise wouldve been charged as a crime if they were an adult. Juvenile delinquents sometimes have associated mental disorders and/or behavioural issues such as post traumatic stress disorder or bipolar disorder, and are sometimes diagnosed with conduct disorder, (Holmes, 2001) partially as both the cause and resulting effects of their behaviours.
Based on the above observation this study is interested to know the relationship between peer group pressure and juvenile delinquent behavior among adolescents.
Statement of the Problem
a. Will there be a relationship between peer group pressure and delinquent behaviours among adolescents.
b. Will there be a relationship between gender and delinquent behaviours among adolescents.
Purpose of Study
The aims of this study are as follows:.
a. To determine whether there will be a relationship between peer group pressure and delinquent behaviours among adolescents.
b. To determine whether there will be a relationship between
gender and delinquent behaviours among adolescents.
Definition of Terms
Peer Pressure: A peer is a friend or acquaintance who is about the same age with someone. One interacts with this person and other persons about of the same age. Pressure is when people of your own age try to influence how you act and react to some events around you.
Delinquency: This is all about the condition or quality of being a delinquent, failing in a duty or obligation, defaulting and engaging in acts likely to cause a breach of peace and acts socially unacceptable. Practically, individuals who have this categorization are guilty of an offence or breach of peace. This study will look at individuals who are under the age of 18 and categorized as delinquents.
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