Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Abraham S. Fischler College of Education and School of Criminal Justice


Steven Hecht

Committee Member

Marcelo Castro

Committee Member

Chad Posick


age-graded theory, delinquency, Latino youth, life course, violence


Researchers frequently aggregate Latino subgroups during statistical analyses despite findings indicating that cultural distinctions within Latino subgroups have unintended hidden impacts on analyses. This study disaggregated the Latino sample to assess if Latino youth samples differ among subgroups (i.e., Mexicans/Mexican Americans, Cubans/Cuban Americans, Puerto Ricans, Central/South Americans, and other Latinos) who self-reported violent and nonviolent delinquent behavior. Also, this study used Sampson and Laub’s age-graded theory to investigate life-course characteristics that predicted violent and nonviolent delinquent behaviors. A two-step approach analysis determined the differences in violent and delinquent behaviors among Latino subgroups and then which life-course risk factors predicted the variability of self-reported violent and delinquent behaviors within Latino youth subgroups. To address the study questions, a MANOVA and ANOVA analyses was used to determine the differences in violent and delinquent behaviors among Latino subgroups in the dataset of Waves I and III of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health Survey. The second analysis of multiple linear regression analysis was utilized to determine if life-course predictive factors determine violent and delinquent outcomes within each Latino youth subgroup. The results of this study revealed that determinants of life-course risk factors (e.g., parental engagement, school trouble, neighborhood perception, sensation-seeking, and deviant peers) differed between Latino intra-ethnic subgroups and predicted certain Latino subgroup violent and delinquent outcomes. Consequently, this research has persuasive evidence that researchers not to aggregate analyses by combining the Latino sample, which may obscure statistical trends that depend on which Latino subgroup is considered.