A test of self-control theory across different socioeconomic strata

Alexander T. Vazsonyi, Rudi Klanjšek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


The current investigation examined the relationships between family processes, self-control, and adolescent deviance in a sample of N = 3,764 Swiss male and female youth pursuing an apprenticeship (lower SES) or attending a Gymnasium/teacher's college (higher SES). Participants completed a questionnaire that included measures of family processes, self-control, and deviant behaviors. Results indicated that self-control predicted adolescent deviance in both groups, and that direct and indirect effects existed in the relationships between family processes, self-control, and deviance. Findings provided evidence of comparatively few differences in the observed associations by SES, though the magnitude of the positive effect by low self-control on deviance was more modest in male apprentices as compared to non-apprentices. Findings are discussed in terms of the implications for Self-Control Theory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-131
Number of pages31
JournalJustice Quarterly
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We are grateful to school administrators, teachers, and study participants as well as for the support to the first author provided by the Grant-in-Aid Program at Auburn University for data collection and for the stipend to the second author provided by the Slovenian Ministry of Higher Education, Science, and Technology to support his stay at Auburn University.


  • Adolescent deviance
  • Family processes
  • Self-control theory
  • Socioeconomic strata

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law


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