Learning Disabilities and Delinquent Behaviors among Adolescents: A Comparison of Those with and without Comorbidity

Mary K. Evans, Samantha S. Clinkinbeard, Pete Simi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Research is inconclusive on whether adolescents with learning disabilities (LD) engage in more delinquency than adolescents without such deficits. Mixed results may result from a failure to account for the effects of co-occurring disabilities. Using the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, this study examines delinquency among adolescents without disabilities to youth with LD, Attention Disorder Symptoms (ADS), and comorbid LD/ADS. Results indicate no significant differences in property offenses, or alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use; however, youth with LD reported significantly more violence than non-disabled youth. Findings illustrate the heterogeneous effects various disabilities have on delinquent behavior. Future research and policy implications will be discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)200-220
Number of pages21
JournalDeviant Behavior
Volume36
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 4 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law

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