Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Legacy Department



Tollison, Robert D.

Committee Member

Baier , Scott L.

Committee Member

Wood , Daniel


This paper empirically examines the impacts of education on crime participation among youth aged between 18 -24, using data from National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 97(NLSY97). First, it estimates the reduction effects of high school graduation on general crime participation, which shows significant negative effects. Then this paper predicts the effects of high school graduation on three types of crime. A robust finding is that all of the three types of crimes are negative associated with high school graduation whether or not controlling family background and cognitive skill. Also, this paper classifies education level into three levels and predicts the effects of crime participation for each education level. The results reflect that more higher education level has larger crime reduction effects than lower education level. In order to check the robustness of the findings above, this paper explores the effects of high school graduation and ability on incarceration. The implications of these findings are clear and could give policy suggestion. That is, improving education could exert a key policy tool to reduce crime.

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