A new study co-authored by Virginia Tech Gaming and Media Effects Laboratory (VT G.A.M.E.R. Lab) co-director Dr. James D. Ivory finds that overall media media use by adolescents does not predict criminality over time.

The study, co-authored with lead author Dr. Christopher Ferguson of the Department of Psychology at Texas A & M University International and Dr. Kevin Beaver of Florida State University and published in the May 2013 issue of the Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment, and Trauma, examined longitudinal survey data collected between 1994 and 2008 by the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. The analysis observed that while a series of genetic and social risk factors predicted criminality in adulthood, the association between overall media use and criminality was negligible.

An abstract from the article is below.  For more information or a sample copy of the article, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


The catalyst model suggests that adult criminality arises from the interaction of genetic and proximal social influences such as family influences, but that distal social influences such as media exposure have only negligible influence. This article uses data from a 13-year longitudinal study of adolescent health to examine the catalyst model. As expected by the catalyst model, adult criminality was best explained by a confluence of genetic and proximal social risk factors. The influence of media exposure on adult criminality was negligible. Implications of these findings for both theory and policy are discussed.