Does Education Enable Reduction in Crime? – Journal Analysis


There have been a number of measures employed to fight crimes in the society. Education has been identified as one of these measures. Hypothetically, there are various reasons that makes education be related with crime reduction. These reasons include the fact that education rises wages and thus the opportunity cost of being involved in a crime. Education also teaches young individuals to learn to be extra patient via schooling and put more weight on the possibility of good earning in the future. School also helps individuals to understand the consequences of a crime. Moreover, education might directly augment the psychic cost of being involved in crime. In this regard, a number of criminal justice researcher and policy makers are encouraged to consider promoting education among all especially less advantaged in the society and minorities to reduce their involvement in crime. This paper analyzes two journals that support that education reduces the rate of crimes in a region.

Machin, S., Marie, o., & Vujic, S. (2011). The crime reducing effect of education. The Economic Journal, 121(552), 463-484.

The article evaluates the relation between the rates of crime with increase in education and school leaving age. This evaluation is based on a case study conducted in Wales and England. The rates of crimes are evaluated against the level of the population in the education sector. The collected data are analyzed using regression discontinuity environment. Causal statistics estimates are presented founded on a law that altered the compulsory age of leaving school in Wales and England. The analysis establishes decrease in property crime with increase in the number of people with education and professional qualifications in the society. In addition, increase in the school leaving age also reduced the level of crime in both Wales and England. The limit put in the minimum school entry and an increase in the number of years to spend in school.

According to the analysis, time spends in education reduces the time available for young people to think and to be involved in crime related behaviors. Moreover, the ability to obey the school regulation and policies increase one’s ability to understand the law and its consequences and also to be guided by the law. This enables educated individuals to be easily guided by the laws developed for a country and thus, increasing their ability to avoid crimes and other behaviors that may easily promoted incarnation or conflict with the law. In this regard, it is clear that education improvement can significantly result to social benefit and can act as the main policy making tool in drive to lower crime rate in a region. According to this article, increase in education reduces the level of crime. Therefore education promotion in a region enhances the reduction of individuals involved in crimes. Therefore, education can be used by criminal justices system to develop policies that will lower the rate of criminal activities.

Hjalmarsson, R., & Lochner, L. (2012). The impact of education on crime: International evidence. CESifo DICE Report, 2, 49-55.

This article is a literature review focusing on the previous researches conducted to establish the relation between education and crime reduction in the world. The article evaluates journals from Europe and America which are two continents where this research has been taking place. The research is based on journal materials that were published from 1997 to 2011. The article is guided by subheadings that are well developed to establish the association between education and crimes. According to the article, different researches have demonstrated an inverse relation between education and the level of crime. A number of recent studies conducted in the United States and Europe demonstrates the strong link between crime and education. For instance, in 1997, about 59% of federal and 75% of state prison inmates in the United States did not have a diploma in high school. In 2001, over 75% of Italian convicts had not attained high school qualification. Moreover, incarceration rate of uneducated men aged between 21 and 25 was eight time more as compared to educated men in the United Kingdom.

All these statistics demonstrated an association between education and crime such that, the rate of imprisonment and conviction increases with decrease in the level of education. It also demonstrates that attainment in high school education reduces individual chances of being involved in crime. The research also established the economic benefit of education in reduction of crime. Although education reduces chances of being involved in street crimes, it increases the chances of individuals being involved in white collar crimes for instance embezzlement fraud. In addition, education increase chances of being involved in cybercrimes. However, despites of the negatives involved of education in crimes, the level of benefits enjoyed for promoting education to reduce crimes is much higher as compared to the negatives. The paper also established that education is important in reducing the rate of education even where the quality of education is low or the student score is low. The paper therefore concludes that, education is highly associated with reduced rate of crime in different parts of the world, since its positive social and economic benefit are much higher than its negatives in the criminal justice system. Thus, education based policy can highly be used by criminal justice system to lower the crime level in the world.

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