Title page for ETD etd-06222006-153724

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Spradlin, Jamie Lynn
Author's Email Address jspradli@vt.edu
URN etd-06222006-153724
Title Tolerance of Diversity, Collective Efficacy, and Criminal Victimization on a College Campus
Degree Master of Science
Department Sociology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Shoemaker, Donald J. Committee Chair
Hawdon, James E. Committee Member
Yuan, Anastasia Sue Vogt Committee Member
  • social control
  • neighborhood control
  • and Snipes
  • Bernard
  • Vold
  • Cohen and Felson
Date of Defense 2006-05-09
Availability unrestricted
Victimization and hate crimes are becoming more prominent on America’s college campuses. Indeed, nearly 20,000 crimes of violence, and over 600 hate crimes, occurred on and around university campuses in 2003 (Department of Education 2004). Given its inverse relationship to crime at the aggregate level, (Sampson et al 1997), one possible means of reversing this trend would be to increase levels of collective efficacy across U.S. campuses. The purpose of this research is to determine if an individual’s tolerance of diversity is related to their willingness to intervene in criminal or potentially criminal situations. That is, is tolerance of diversity related to collective efficacy at Virginia Tech? The research on collective efficacy is based on neighborhood level variables. This research, conducted in the “neighborhood” of Virginia Tech, focuses on collective efficacy and tolerance of diversity at the individual level. This research is unique in that it fills gaps in existing literature; to date, no research has analyzed the potential causes of collective efficacy at the individual level. Participants in this study will be asked to complete a survey regarding issues of diversity, tolerance and integration, and sense of belonging to community. The results will then be analyzed in order to gain some insight into this phenomenon. The main questions that will be explored in this research are: Does an individual’s sense of belonging to his or her community and tolerance of diversity lead to their willingness to intervene if they see someone doing something wrong? That is, is sense of belonging to community and tolerance of diversity related to collective efficacy? Routine Activities Theory and studies of Collective Efficacy will be used to explore these questions.
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