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Incidence of learning disabilities in an inmate population in B.C. Lysakowski, Barbara 1980

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INCIDENCE OF LEARNING DISABILITIES IN AN INMATE' POPULATION IN B.C. by BARBARA LYSAKOWSKI B . S c , U n i v e r s i t y of Toronto, 1973 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n the THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Adul t Education) We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA October, 1980 Barbara Lysakowski, 1980 In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s in p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f the requ i rement s f< an advanced degree at the U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Co lumb ia , I ag ree tha the L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e and s tudy . I f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e c o p y i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may be g r a n t e d by the Head o f my Department or by h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . It i s u n d e r s t o o d that c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l not be a l l o w e d w i thout my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . Department o f /IJuJ-f ^JiiraktY)", The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Co lumbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 Date 0Mttl(> /9fr -i ABSTRACT The purpose of t h i s study was to measure the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n a f e d e r a l inmate p o p u l a t i o n . I t f u r t h e r sought to d i f f e r -e n t i a t e between l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal l e a r n i n g inmates on s o c i o -economic and c r i m i n a l v a r i a b l e s . Research concerning l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n the j u v e n i l e delinquent p o p u l a t i o n and i l l i t e r a c y i n the adult inmate population suggested that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n adult c r i m i n a l populations would be high. The match between the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n -d i v i d u a l s and c r i m i n a l s f u r t h e r suggested that c r i m i n a l s would manifest t h e i r l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n c r i m i n a l behaviour which would, thus, d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y from the normal l e a r n e r s . Two hundred and f o r t y two inmates i n s i x f e d e r a l i n s t i t u t i o n s , t a k i n g part i n the r e g u l a r p e n i t e n t i a r y i n d u c t i o n process, were interviewed and asked to w r i t e the Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT) and the School and  College A b i l i t y Test (SCAT). Other data used i n the study was obtained from the inmates' i n s t i t u t i o n a l f i l e s . Of the o r i g i n a l 242 inmates interviewed only 192 completed both t e s t s and of these only 169 met the c r i t e r i a f o r f u r t h e r a n a l y s i s . Two measures of the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s were taken. As IQ scores were not a v a i l a b l e , s t r a i g h t d i f f e r e n c e scores between the t e s t -measured achievement grade and the highest grade completed i n the r e g u l a r school system gave the maximum estimate of the incidence. The minimum estimate of the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s was determined by im-posing a second c o n d i t i o n which required that the i n d i v i d u a l score be-low two S.D.'s from the mean on one of the p e r c e n t i l e scores of the sub-i i t e s t s . The maximum inc i d e n c e of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s was 18.9 percent which was not s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from the general p o p u l a t i o n maximum of 16 percent. The minimum incidence was 7.69 percent which was not s i g n i f -i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from the general p o p u l a t i o n minimum of 6 percent. These r e s u l t s on the i n c i d e n c e of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s c o n t r a d i c t previous r e -search; however, the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate g e n e r a l l y are compatible w i t h t h e o r e t i c a l suggestions. The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate was found to be younger, come from a l a r g e r f a m i l y w i t h a worse c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y , have committed more aggressive crimes, have been c o n v i c t e d as an a d u l t at a younger age, have been con-v i c t e d of more offences and, even though younger, have had the same num-ber of previous f e d e r a l and p r o v i n c i a l commitments and have served the same p e r i o d of time i n f e d e r a l and p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s as the normal l e a r n i n g inmate. i i i TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ABSTRACT i LIST OF TABLES v i LIST OF FIGURES v i i i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS i x Chapter 1. INTRODUCTION 1 Nature of the Problem 1 C r i m i n a l Behaviour 1 Educational L e v e l of Cr i m i n a l s 3 Purpose of the Study 7 S i g n i f i c a n c e of the Study 7 L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study 8 Organization of the Study 9 2. REVIEW OF LITERATURE AND HYPOTHESES 10 DEFINITION OF LEARNING DISABILITIES 10 Studies i n Adult Education 10 Studies i n Pre-Adult Education 11 Operational D e f i n i t i o n of Learning D i s a b i l i t y 15 LEARNING DISABILITIES AND INMATE POPULATIONS . . 19 Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s 20 1. Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s i n P r i s o n Populations and.Juvenile Delinquent Populations . . . 20 2. Educational Attainment and I l l i t e r a c y i n P r i s o n s . . . 22 Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s and I t s C o r r e l a t e s 23 1. Socio-Economic Status of Parents 23 i v Page 2 . Employment H i s t o r y of Inmates . 24 3 . Type of Offence 25 4. Number of Previous Convictions 27 THE HYPOTHESES 27 Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s 27 Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s and I t s C o r r e l a t e s 28 SUMMARY 29 Chapter 3 . METHODOLOGY 30 P o p u l a t i o n 30 Instrumentation and Data C o l l e c t i o n 32 Procedure 37 Data A n a l y s i s 39 4 . RESULTS 41 I CHARACTERISTICS OF THE SAMPLE 41 Biographic Data 41 Employment Data 44 C r i m i n a l Data 45 Educational Data 46 D i s c u s s i o n 52 I I INCIDENCE OF LEARNING DISABILITIES 53 Test Scores 57 Hypothesis Testing 62 Hypothesis One 62 Hypothesis Two 65 Learning Disabled Inmates 71 D i s c u s s i o n 73 V Page I I I LEARNING DISABILITIES AND ITS CORRELATES 75 Hypothesis One 76 Hypothesis Two 77 Hypotheses Three and Four 78 Hypothesis F i v e 81 Dis c u s s i o n 81 OTHER FINDINGS 84 Dis c u s s i o n 87 Chapter 5. SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE 90 SUMMARY 90 Popul a t i o n 90 I C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the Sample 91 I I Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s 91 Hypotheses One and Two 92 I I I Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s and I t s C o r r e l a t e s 92 Hypotheses One and Two 93 Hypotheses Three and Four 93 Hypothesis Five 93 Other Findings 94 L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study 94 CONCLUSIONS 94 SIGNIFICANCE 95 Areas f o r Future Research . . . . . . . 97 REFERENCES 100 v i LIST OF TABLES Table Page 1. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Inmates by Type of I n s t i t u t i o n 31 2. Reasons f o r Not Completing Both Tests or Refusing T e s t i n g . . 38 3. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by M a r i t a l Status 42 4. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Childhood Home Status 43 5. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Occupation 44 6. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Major Offence and L i f e t i m e Major Offence 46 7. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Adult Education P a r t i c i p a t i o n . . 50 8. P a r t i c i p a t i o n i n Adult Education by Highest Grade Completed i n Regular School 51 9. Refusers and Accepters: Mean Age, Federal Commitments, Length of Federal Time Served, Highest Grade, Highest Grade as an Adult 54 10. Refusers and Accepters: D i f f e r e n c e s on Nominal V a r i a b l e s . . . 55 11. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Highest Grade A t t a i n e d 57 12. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Achievement Grades on WRAT and SCAT 59 13. D i s t r i b u t i o n of P e r c e n t i l e Scores on WRAT and SCAT 60 14. Means, S.D.'s, Skewness and K u r t o s i s of P e r c e n t i l e Scores . . . 61 15. Mean D i f f e r e n c e Scores f o r IQ Known Group and T r i a l IQ's Group 63 16. Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s 64 17. Means, S.D.'s, Skewness and K u r t o s i s of Five D i f f e r e n c e Score 66 18. Learning Disabled and Normal Learners: Geographic Area of School Attendance and Ethnic O r i g i n 74 19. Socio-economic Status of the F a m i l i e s of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners 76 20. Learning Disabled and Normal Learners: Mean Socio-economic Status, Number of Jobs and Length of Job 77 21. Mann Whitney U Test of Aggressiveness of Offences of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners 79 22. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners by Offence Category 80 v i i Page 23. Means of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners on Number of Commitments and Federal Time Served 82 24. D i f f e r e n c e s i n Family C r i m i n a l H i s t o r y of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners 84 25. Means of Other S i g n i f i c a n t I n t e r v a l V a r i a b l e s f o r Learning Disabled and Normal Learners 85 26. P a r t i c i p a t i o n i n Adult Education by Learning Disabled and Normal Learners 85 27. V a r i a b l e s D i s c r i m i n a t i n g the Learning Disabled and Normal Learners 86 v i i i LIST OF FIGURES Figure Page 1. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Highest Grade A t t a i n e d i n Regular School System 48 2. D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Highest Grade A t t a i n e d as an Adult 49 3. D i s t r i b u t i o n of D i f f e r e n c e Scores: S p e l l i n g 67 4. D i s t r i b u t i o n of D i f f e r e n c e Scores: Verbal 67 5. D i s t r i b u t i o n of D i f f e r e n c e Scores: A r i t h m e t i c 68 6. D i s t r i b u t i o n of D i f f e r e n c e Scores: Q u a n t i t a t i v e 68 7. D i s t r i b u t i o n of the Average D i f f e r e n c e Score 69 i x ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would l i k e to thank Dr. R. Boshier f o r suggesting the population to be studied and f o r s u p e r v i s i n g t h i s work. In a d d i t i o n , I would l i k e to thank the other members of my committee: Dr. G. Dickinson f o r h i s u s e f u l suggestions and Dr. D. K e n d a l l f o r h i s continued i n t e r e s t i n the progress of t h i s work and h i s h e l p f u l comments i n the f i e l d of s p e c i a l education. I t i s w i t h pleasure that I express my g r a t i t u d e to Dr. T.A.A. P a r l e t t f o r h i s encouragement, i n t e r e s t and support throughout my period of em-ployment w i t h the Cor r e c t i o n s Service of Canada. CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION The nature of the problem studied and the r o l e of education i n th e o r i e s of c r i m i n a l behaviour are described i n t h i s chapter. In a d d i t i o n , the s i g n i f i c a n c e , i n terms of educational a p p l i c a t i o n s and relevance to c r i m i n a l behaviour, and an a p r i o r i l i m i t a t i o n of the study are st a t e d . Nature of the Problem The purpose of t h i s study was to determine the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , as i n d i c a t e d by extreme underachievement, i n an inmate pop-u l a t i o n . This study f u r t h e r aimed to d i s c r i m i n a t e between l e a r n i n g d i s -abled and normal l e a r n i n g inmates on socio-economic and c r i m i n a l dimen-si o n s . C r i m i n a l Behaviour According to Megargee and Bohn (1979) two approaches have been followed i n the study of c r i m i n a l behaviour. The h e u r i s t i c approach focuses p r i m a r i l y on one aspect of the c r i m i n a l to e x p l a i n c r i m i n a l i t y , while the approach based on e m p i r i c a l and s t a t i s t i c a l s tudies focuses on c l a s s i f y i n g c r i m i n a l s according to e m p i r i c a l l y derived f a c t o r s . Among h e u r i s t i c approaches to the study of c r i m i n a l behaviour are typ o l o g i e s based on p h y s i c a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , offence p a t t e r n s , s o c i a l r o l e s and p a t t e r n s , and p e r s o n a l i t y patterns and psychodynamics. A l l of the h e u r i s t i c t y p o l o g i e s were designed to e x p l a i n c r i m i n a l i t y c a u s a l l y but not a l l were t r a n s f e r a b l e to a p p l i e d use i n r e h a b i l i t a t i o n programs. E a r l y h e u r i s t i c attempts at the c l a s s i f i c a t i o n of c r i m i n a l s d i f f e r -e n t i a t e d between the c r i m i n a l and non-criminal populations i n terms of body b u i l d . L a t e r attempts examined offence patterns of c r i m i n a l s i n the b e l i e f that homogeneous groups committed c e r t a i n offences. The inadequacy of t h i s c l a s s i f i c a t i o n scheme led to the development of more complicated systems i n v o l v i n g the offence f o r which the c r i m i n a l was i n c a r c e r a t e d , the degree of deviance from s o c i a l norms and r e p e t i t i v e crime pa t t e r n s . Other h e u r i s t i c c l a s s i f i c a t i o n systems came from sociology. Feldman (1977) reviewed s o c i o l o g i c a l t h e o r i e s which v a r i e d i n t h e i r t h e o r e t i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n . The f i r s t t h e o r e t i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n considered c r i m i n a l i t y as a r e a c t i o n to s o c i a l f a i l u r e and a l i e n a t i o n . This included the anomie theory of Merton, the adolescent status problem of Cohen, and the a l i e n a t i o n theory of Cloward and O h l i n . A l l t h e o r i z e d that c r i m i n a l i t y was a r e a c t i o n , by members of the lower s o c i a l c l a s s e s , to the u n a t t a i n -a b i l i t y of middle c l a s s success. The other t h e o r e t i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n r e j e c t e d t h i s r e a c t i o n concept, suggesting instead that c r i m i n a l i t y r e s u l t e d when an i n d i v i d u a l conformed to the s u b - c u l t u r a l norms i n which offending was frequent. In c o n t r a s t , p s y c h o l o g i c a l explanations focused on i n d i v i d u a l be-haviour p a t t e r n s . Typologies have been developed based on p e r s o n a l i t y s t r u c t u r e and psychodynamics as i n Ferdinand's delinquency c a t e g o r i e s . Other models focused on one aspect of behaviour as i n Hunt's theory of developmental stages, or Warren's theory of i n t e r p e r s o n a l m a t u r i t y l e v e l s (Megargee and Bohn, 1979). More r e c e n t l y , Yochelson and Samenow (1977) have asc r i b e d c r i m i n a l behaviour to fundamental d i f f e r e n c e s i n c r i m i n a l and non-criminal p e r s o n a l i t i e s . They concluded that c r i m i n a l s think d i f f e r e n t l y than the general p o p u l a t i o n and that the c r i m i n a l i s "... a person whose e n t i r e t h i n k i n g apparatus i s designed to achieve h i s a n t i -s o c i a l o b j e c t i v e s " (1977, p.6). A c c o r d i n g l y , an i n d i v i d u a l does not r e a c t to s o c i a l disadvantage to become c r i m i n a l , r a t h e r he "... decides 3 very e a r l y whom he wants to be w i t h and what k i n d of l i f e he wants to lead. He makes choices a l l the way along, and c r i m i n a l patterns are i d e n t i f i a b l e by the age of about ten" (1976, p.143). The second approach to the study of c r i m i n a l behaviour i s based on e m p i r i c a l s t u d i e s . V a r i a b l e s thought to be r e l e v a n t are measured and the subsequent s t a t i s t i c a l a n a l y s i s y i e l d s d i s c r e t e groups of i n d i v i d u a l s who are c h a r a c t e r i z e d by s i m i l a r sets of scores. E m p i r i c a l l y derived t y p o l o g i e s such as Quay's and, more r e c e n t l y , Megargee's are p r i m a r i l y u s e f u l i n diagnostic-treatment a p p l i c a t i o n s (Megargee and Bohn,.1979). Throughout these d i s p a r a t e t h e o r i e s one of the f a c t o r s appearing c o n s i s t e n t l y i s the unsuccessful school experience of c r i m i n a l s . In soc-i o l o g i c a l t h e o r i e s reviewed by Feldman (1977), unsuccessful school exper-iences and the dearth of o p p o r t u n i t i e s provided by the s o c i a l system lead to r e j e c t i o n of the middle c l a s s route to achieve success. In Yochelson and Samenow's (1976) theory, the p o t e n t i a l c r i m i n a l chooses not to succeed i n school. Consequently, f a i l u r e i s due to m o t i v a t i o n a l problems and not to a lack of a b i l i t y . In the Megargee and Bohn (1979) e m p i r i c a l l y derived c l a s s i f i c a t i o n system, the d i f f e r e n c e of 2.5 grades between the highest grade completed and the test-measured achievement grade was a t t r i b u t e d to the p r a c t i c e of s o c i a l promotion. Consistent observation of low educational l e v e l s i s not uniformly i n t e r p r e t e d . I n -t e r p r e t a t i o n s of t h e . r o l e of low educational l e v e l s range from those which see i t as part of the causal sequence, as i n some s o c i o l o g i c a l t h e o r i e s , to those which see i t non-causally, as i n the theory of Yochelson and Samenow (1976). E d u c a t i o n a l L e v e l s of C r i m i n a l s C r i m i n a l s have educational l e v e l s w e l l below that of the general 4 popu l a t i o n ( K i r b y et a l . , 1972; MacCormick, 1931; Roberts, 1971). However, i t i s d i f f i c u l t to o b t a i n accurate f i g u r e s concerning the educational l e v e l s of c r i m i n a l s . This d i f f i c u l t y i s i n d i c a t e d by G r i f f i n who found that ... no record of e d u c a t i o n a l attainment e x i s t s f o r 2,196 inmates out of a t o t a l of 9,486. In other words no educational record e x i s t s f o r n e a r l y a quarter of the inmates i n the (Canadian) fed-e r a l system. The records which do e x i s t are u n r e l i a b l e , since they are based on s e l f - r e p o r t by inmates, i n most cases (1978,p.11). In a d d i t i o n to the u n r e l i a b i l i t y problem, confusion i s r e f l e c t e d i n the estimates of i l l i t e r a c y i n p r i s o n populations. Depending on the def-i n i t i o n of i l l i t e r a c y used, incidence f i g u r e s range w i l d l y . Reagan and Stoughton c i t e d s t a t i s t i c s which claimed that "... between 20 and 50 per-cent of the approximately h a l f - m i l l i o n a d ults i n c a r c e r a t e d i n American f e d e r a l and s t a t e p r i s o n s can n e i t h e r read nor w r i t e " (1976, p . x i ) . In the Canadian f e d e r a l p r i s o n system G r i f f i n (1978) estimated that three percent of inmates were completely i l l i t e r a t e , based on the r e s u l t s of those few inmates who had undergone academic t e s t i n g . Using a d e f i n i t i o n of f u n c t i o n a l i l l i t e r a c y , that i s , a chieving below a c e r t a i n grade l e v e l , estimates range from eleven percent ( C o r t r i g h t , 1973) and twelve percent ( G r i f f i n , 1978) to f o r t y percent (D'Amico and Standlee, 1954). Compared to the general p o p u l a t i o n inmates a t t a i n low l e v e l s of ed-u c a t i o n i n terms of the highest grade completed i n school. Further, i n -mates have measured achievements below the highest grade a t t a i n e d (Megargee and Bohn, 1979; Powers, 1968; Roberts, 1971; Seashore et a l . , 1976; Taggart, 1972). This discrepancy between the achievement l e v e l and highest grade completed has l e d w r i t e r s to propose that inmates are l e a r n i n g d i s -abled . Research on the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n ad u l t c r i m i n a l populations i s v i r t u a l l y non-existent. Most of the d i s c u s s i o n on the 5 a s s o c i a t i o n between l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and c r i m i n a l i t y has, to date, been confined to the j u v e n i l e delinquent p o p u l a t i o n . Research w i t h j u v e n i l e delinquents i n d i c a t e s that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i s high. Murray (1976) reviewed t h i s research and found that the incidence estimates ranged from a low of 22 percent to a high of 90.4 percent. Even though Murray found much of t h i s research poorly designed and executed, i t i n d i c a t e d a p a t t e r n of l e a r n i n g handicaps. The high incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n the j u v e n i l e d e l i n -quent p o p u l a t i o n has i n i t i a t e d much s p e c u l a t i o n as to a causal l i n k be-tween l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and subsequent c r i m i n a l i t y . Murray described "... two routes by which LD i s thought to produce delinquency. The f i r s t of these i s a f a m i l i a r one which l i n k s LD to school f a i l u r e , to dropout, and to delinquency — the 'School F a i l u r e r a t i o n a l e ' ...".(1976, p.23). The second route ... i s b r i e f e r and much more d i r e c t , at l e a s t i n taki n g the chain to the poi n t of increased s u s c e p t i b i l i t y to delinquent behaviour. In e f f e c t , t h i s r a t i o n a l e — c a l l i t the S u s c e p t i b i l i t y r a t i o n a l e — argues that c e r t a i n types and combinations of LD are accompanied by a v a r i e t y of s o c i a l l y troublesome p e r s o n a l i t y c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s ... (1976, p.26) i n c l u d i n g general impulsiveness, poor r e c e p t i o n of s o c i a l cues and poor a b i l i t y to l e a r n from experience. Murray's (1976) review concluded that the research, due to poor design, has, so f a r , f a i l e d to e s t a b l i s h the l i n k . In s p i t e of the i n -adequate research, the causal l i n k between l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and juv-e n i l e delinquency i s b e l i e v e d to e x i s t (Bachara and Zaba, 1978; Deschler, 1978; K l i n e , 1978; Mesinger, 1976; Poremba, 1975; Ramos, 1978). The p o s s i b i l i t y of such a causal r e l a t i o n s h i p and the confusion i n a a l l aspects of current knowledge of the educational backgrounds of crim-i n a l s leads to the f o l l o w i n g questions: 1. How does the inmate population's educational background d i f f e r from 6 that of the general population? In p a r t i c u l a r , what i s the d i s t r i b u t i o n of inmate achievement? 2. Does t h i s d i s t r i b u t i o n of achievement i n d i c a t e a homogeneous popul-a t i o n , or are d i s t i n c t sub-groups present? 3. Do l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates form one of these sub-groups and, i f so, can t h i s l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d sub-group be d i f f e r e n t i a t e d from the r e s t of the inmate p o p u l a t i o n on socio-economic and c r i m i n a l v a r i a b l e s ? Questions such as these, as w e l l as being p e r t i n e n t to the e s t -ablishment of a causal r e l a t i o n s h i p between l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and c r i m i n a l behaviour, have i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r educational programming i n c o r r e c t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . Education plays a c r u c i a l r o l e i n r e h a b i l -i t a t i o n programs as i t i s b e l i e v e d that i n c r e a s i n g e d ucational l e v e l s and t e c h n i c a l s k i l l s w i l l r e s u l t i n improved chances f o r employment which would, i n t u r n , decrease r e c i d i v i s m r a t e s ( C o r t r i g h t , 1973; Fey and Gleason, 1973; Polk, 1976). In any c o r r e c t i o n s education program the educator must modify h i s approach to education as "... p r i s o n e r s have, i n one way or another, pre-v i o u s l y r e j e c t e d or f a i l e d to master t r a d i t i o n a l pedagogical methods. ... C l e a r l y , f o r a v a r i e t y of reasons, they d i d not accept, p a r t i c i p a t e , and progress i n the e d u c a t i o n a l system outside p r i s o n " (Reagan and Stoughton, 1976, p.114). Adult educators have a wide experience w i t h i n d i v i d u a l s who have r e j e c t e d pedagogical approaches and, thus must assume more respons-i b i l i t y i n c o r r e c t i o n s education (Boyd, 1973; C o r t r i g h t , 1973; D'Amico and Standlee, 1954; P a l f r e y , 1974; Wagner, 1976). I f e ducational programming i s to be s u c c e s s f u l and meet the needs of inmates, i t i s e s s e n t i a l that educators be aware of the e d u c a t i o n a l char-a c t e r i s t i c s of inmates. That such knowledge i s sparse i s i n d i c a t e d by the 7 reviewers of educational programs i n the Canadian c o r r e c t i o n s system who "... were s u r p r i s e d to f i n d , d e s p i t e the length of the system's e x i s t e n c e , how l i t t l e ' r e l i a b l e 1 , ' r e g u l a r l y gathered' information there i s on which to base any of the day-to-day or long range p r a c t i c e s " (Report to the S o l i c i t o r General, 1979, p.15). Purpose of the Study This study, i n response to the confusion about the educational char-a c t e r i s t i c s of adult c r i m i n a l s , sought to c l a r i f y the major i s s u e s . In p a r t i c u l a r , t h i s study examined the ed u c a t i o n a l l e v e l s of inmates, i n terms of highest grade completed and t e s t measured achievement l e v e l s , to de- . termine the d i s t r i b u t i o n of achievement. Extreme underachievement i s i n -d i c a t i v e , of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and, thus, would give estimates of the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . i n an inmate p o p u l a t i o n . This study f u r t h e r sought to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and other i n -mates on socio-economic and c r i m i n a l v a r i a b l e s . S i g n i f i c a n c e of the Study This study i s s i g n i f i c a n t because: 1. I t would allow f o r a d e t a i l e d comparison between inmates and the gen-e r a l p o p u l a t i o n i n terms of highest grade completed and s p e c i f i c , t e s t -measured achievement l e v e l s . The incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s derived from such a n a l y s i s , i f as high as i n d i c a t e d by research with j u v e n i l e d e l i n q u e n t s , would have causal i m p l i c a t i o n s . H o p e f u l l y , t h i s would s t i m u l a t e research e f f o r t s to examine a l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d cohort l o n g i t u d i n a l l y to see what e f f e c t , i f any, on p o t e n t i a l c r i m i n a l i t y can be a t t r i b u t e d to l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . 2 . Knowledge concerning the educational backgrounds of inmates and the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s has r a m i f i c a t i o n s f o r the focus of 8 c o r r e c t i o n s education. A high incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s would n e c e s s i t a t e the use of s p e c i a l education programming as a major feature of c o r r e c t i o n s education. 3. D i f f e r e n c e s i n the c r i m i n a l behaviour observed between l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal l e a r n i n g inmates would have i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r r e h a b i l i t a t i v e approaches used w i t h t h i s group. That l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates may manifest t h e i r d i s a b i l i t i e s i n the type of offence committed suggests that s p e c i a l education be o f f e r e d as a component of r e h a b i l i t a t i o n pro-grams . L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study Although l i m i t a t i o n s of the study w i l l be examined i n the concluding chapter, one obvious and serious l i m i t a t i o n e x i s t s a p r i o r i . I t i s im-p o s s i b l e to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between an u n w i l l i n g n e s s to l e a r n , . o r lack of m o t i v a t i o n to l e a r n , and a d i s a b i l i t y , or d i f f i c u l t y , i n l e a r n i n g . Since t h i s i s an ex post f a c t o study, d e a l i n g w i t h what has already occurred i n the p u b l i c school system, there i s no way of measuring the m o t i v a t i o n of the adult c r i m i n a l as a c h i l d . In t h i s study i t w i l l be assumed t h a t , at l e a s t i n i t i a l l y , l a ck of m o t i v a t i o n followed f a i l u r e i n l e a r n i n g r a t h e r than the reverse. This behaviour has been observed by s e v e r a l authors i n d e s c r i b i n g the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d adolescent (Adams, 1973; CELDIC Report, 1970; Connolly, 1971; Deschler, 1978; Gow, 1974; K r a t o v i l l e , 1974). Orga n i z a t i o n of the Study The i n t r o d u c t i o n has described the problem s t u d i e d , i t s s i g n i f i c a n c e and an a p r i o r i l i m i t a t i o n . Chapter 2 reviews l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t e s r e -search and describes the o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n used i n the study, and f u r t h e r reviews research l i n k i n g c r i m i n a l i t y and l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . 9 Relationships inferred from this review are hypothesized. Chapter 3 de-scribes the population studied, instrumentation and data collection pro-cedures, defines other variables used in the study and outlines the data analysis procedures. Chapter 4 discusses the results showing the char-acteristics of the population, the incidence of learning disabilities, and learning disabilities and its correlates. Chapter 5 summarizes the study, notes limitations, gives conclusions and significance and suggests areas for future research. 10 CHAPTER 2 REVIEW OF LITERATURE AND HYPOTHESES From a review of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s l i t e r a t u r e , t h i s chapter d e r i v e s the o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n used i n t h i s study. E m p i r i c a l studies r e l e v a n t to l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and i t s c o r r e l a t e s i n c r i m i n a l popu-l a t i o n s are discussed and hypotheses suggested by the review s t a t e d . DEFINITION OF LEARNING DISABILITIES Studies i n Adult Education I n t e r e s t i n l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n adults has been stimulated i n two ways. F i r s t , follow-up s t u d i e s of adults diagnosed as l e a r n i n g d i s -abled i n childhood demonstrated the p e r s i s t e n c e of l e a r n i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s . Although some researc h e r s , such as Balow and Blomquist (1965), found that follow-up subjects a t t a i n e d average l e a r n i n g p r o f i c i e n c y , other studies i n d i c a t e d ... that severe r e s i d u a l problems are present d e s p i t e the f a c t that . much s p e c i a l e d u c a t i o n a l a t t e n t i o n was provided during school-age years. Test performance and re p o r t s from subjects f u r t h e r demon-s t r a t e that current l e a r n i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s are e s s e n t i a l l y i d e n t i c a l to those evidenced at the time of diagnosis (Frauenheim, 1978, p.21). Her j a n i c and Penick (1972) reviewed nine follow-up studies and reported a range of adu l t outcomes between those c i t e d above. Secondly, i n t e r e s t was sti m u l a t e d on the b a s i s of case s t u d i e s of l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d a d u l t s . The case s t u d i e s by G r a f f (1967), McClelland (1977), Rak (1972 a, b) and Robinson (1969) described l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i l l i t e r a t e a d u l t s , thereby implying a connection between l e a r n i n g d i s -a b i l i t i e s and adult i l l i t e r a c y . Despite the i n t e r e s t generated by follow-up and case s t u d i e s , pro-11 f e s s i o n a l l i t e r a t u r e has not yet systematically dealt with the problems of d e f i n i t i o n , diagnosis and incidence of adult learning d i s a b i l i t i e s (Bingham et a l . , 1978; Cox, 1977). Adult education l i t e r a t u r e has, i n general, con-sidered the need for appropriate i n s t r u c t i o n a l strategies (Anderson, 1974; Bingham et a l . , 1978; Cowin and Graff, 1969; Cox, 1977; Dannehower, 1972; Herbert and Czerniejewski, 1976; Rak, 1972a; Rawson, 1977). Guidelines for studying learning d i s a b i l i t i e s are not a v a i l a b l e from adult education l i t e r a t u r e so t h i s study examined the l i t e r a t u r e of pre-adult education. Studies i n Pre-Adult Education Contributions to the study of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s i n c h i l d r e n have come from medicine, psychology and education (Lerner, 1976; Spache, 1976). As these d i s c i p l i n e s were not always coordinated i n t h e i r research e f f o r t s : ... a v a r i e t y of e t i o l o g i c and d e s c r i p t i v e terms have been used somewhat interchangeably to describe t h i s group of c h i l d r e n ; min-imal brain damage, minimal cerebral dysfunction, clumsy c h i l d syn-drome, visual-motor d i s a b i l i t y , hyperkinetic syndrome, dyslexia, s p e c i f i c reading d i s a b i l i t y , congenital word blindness, percep-tua l motor handicaps, production or a q u i s i t i o n learning problems, and strephosymbolia (Walzer and Richmond, 1973, p.550). The use of both e t i o l o g i c and d e s c r i p t i v e terms when discussing the learning disabled c h i l d r e f l e c t s the t h e o r e t i c a l and applied aspects of t h i s f i e l d . D e f i n i t i o n s a r i s i n g from e t i o l o g i c considerations encom-passed b i o l o g i c a l , psychological and s o c i o - c u l t u r a l explanations (Gaddes, 1976; Walzer and Richmond, 1973). Descriptive d e f i n i t i o n s usually outlined the behavioural manifestations of the d i s a b i l i t y and were more us e f u l i n treatment s i t u a t i o n s (Bryan and Bryan, 1987; Wallace and McLoughlin, 1975). In the e t i o l o g i c approaches, learning d i s a b i l i t i e s are presumed to have occurred a f t e r a b i o l o g i c a l , p s y c h o l o g i c a l or s o c i o - c u l t u r a l i n s u l t . B i o l o g i c a l approaches attempt to i d e n t i f y the organic e t i o l o g y which r e s u l t e d i n n e u r o l o g i c a l d y s f u n c t i o n or b r a i n impairment (Goldberg and Schiffman, 1972; Hallahan and Cruikshank, 1973; Johnson and Myklebust, 1967; M a t t i s and Rapin, 1975; P i h l , 1975; Spears and Weber, 1974; Wender, 1971, 1976). Various b i o l o g i c a l f a c t o r s , i n c l u d i n g biochemical imbalance, genetic a b e r r a t i o n s , pregnancy and b i r t h c o m p l i c a t i o n s , severe i n f a n t i l e i l l n e s s or i n j u r y , poor n u t r i t i o n and environmental hazards, such as the presence of t o x i c substances i n the atmosphere, are b e l i e v e d to adversely i n f l u e n c e mental f u n c t i o n i n g (Duane, 1974; Gaddes, 1976; P i h l , 1975; Spears and Weber, 1974; Walzer and Richmond, 1973; Wender, 1976). In a d d i t i o n to t h i s concept of b r a i n damage, other b i o l o g i c a l explanations consider l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s to be a developmental lag which may "... be the r e -s u l t of unusual delay i n the establishment of neuronal interconnections or of neurochemical t r a n s m i t t e r i n f o r m a t i o n , or i n the m y e l i n a t i o n pro-cess" (Duane, 1974, p.22). Developmental delays are a l s o discussed i n the p s y c h o l o g i c a l approach to l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s where these delays are p o s i t e d to occur when a c h i l d does not pass through the h i e r a r c h i c a l stages of c o g n i t i v e develop-ment ( P i h l , 1975). Others viewed the l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y psychodynamically and suggested that "... the l e a r n i n g mechanisms are d i s r u p t e d by emotional c o n f l i c t s that impair the f u n c t i o n i n g of the i n t e g r a t i v e p o r t i o n of the p e r s o n a l i t y - e g o " (Walzer and Richmond, 1973, p.560). Other p s y c h o l o g i c a l approaches focus on m o t i v a t i o n a l problems which r e s u l t from pressures imposed by the f a m i l y or s o c i a l c l a s s to which the c h i l d belongs (Walzer and Richmond, 1973). S o c i o l o g i c a l f a c t o r s c o n t r i b u t i n g to e t i o l o g y cannot be c l e a r l y sep-arated from p s y c h o l o g i c a l or b i o l o g i c a l f a c t o r s . The r e l a t i o n s h i p between 13 academic performance and s o c i a l c l a s s , however, i n d i c a t e s that those c h i l -dren from the disadvantaged s o c i a l c l a s s enter school w i t h considerable developmental delay (Hallahan and Cruikshank, 1973; Walzer and Richmond, 1973). They are v i c t i m s of "the imposed l i v i n g c o n d i t i o n s of the poor (which) promote i l l h e a l t h and i t s d e p r i v a t i o n s i n a l l spheres -p h y s i c a l , p s y c h o l o g i c a l and s o c i a l " (Gaddes, 1976, p.10). In c o n t r a s t to these e t i o l o g i c approaches, d e s c r i p t i v e d e f i n i t i o n s focus on the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s which d i s t i n g u i s h l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d from normal l e a r n i n g c h i l d r e n . These were developed, f o r the most p a r t , by ed-ucators who focused on those c h i l d r e n who e x h i b i t e d e i t h e r d i f f i c u l t i e s i n academic l e a r n i n g tasks or di s c r e p a n c i e s between achievement and pot-e n t i a l (Lerner, 1976). Out of p r a c t i c a l classroom experience, educators have d e l i n e a t e d the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d c h i l d r e n as f o l l o w s : 1. poor v i s u a l d i s c r i m i n a t i o n and memory f o r words 2. poor au d i t o r y memory f o r words or f o r i n d i v i d u a l sounds i n words 3. p e r s i s t e n t r e v e r s a l s of words, s y l l a b l e s , or l e t t e r s i n reading, w r i t i n g , and speech; r o t a t i o n or i n v e r s i o n s of l e t t e r s and s y l l a b l e s ; m i r r o r - w r i t i n g , or t r a n s p o s i t i o n of numbers 4. poor r e c a l l f o r reproduction of simple geometric forms 5. poor memory f o r auditory or v i s u a l sequence 6. weakly e s t a b l i s h e d handedness 7. clumsiness and poor hand c o n t r o l 8. immature a r t i c u l a t i o n 9. h y p e r a c t i v i t y and d i s t r a c t i b i l i t y (Richardson, 1975, p.31). There e x i s t e d , however, c h i l d r e n who e x h i b i t e d these behaviours but were not considered l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . Consequently, e x c l u s i o n clauses were proposed which would l i m i t the l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s c a t e g o r i z a t i o n to children.who " ... do.not p r i m a r i l y f i t i n t o any other area of excep-t i o n a l i t y ; that i s , c h i l d r e n w i t h l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s are not p r i m a r i l y mentally retarded, emotionally d i s t u r b e d , c u l t u r a l l y deprived, s e n s o r i l y handicapped" (Lerner, 1976, p.9). The most commonly used d e f i n i t i o n , hoping to encompass the perspectives 14 of the r e l e v a n t p r o f e s s i o n a l s , was developed by the N a t i o n a l Advisory C o u n c i l on Handicapped C h i l d r e n i n 1968 as f o l l o w s : C h i l d r e n w i t h s p e c i f i c l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s e x h i b i t a d i s o r d e r i n one or more of the b a s i c p s y c h o l o g i c a l processes involved i n understanding or i n using spoken or w r i t t e n language. These may be manifested i n d i s o r d e r s of l i s t e n i n g , t h i n k i n g , t a l k i n g , reading, w r i t i n g , s p e l l i n g , or a r i t h m e t i c . They in c l u d e con-d i t i o n s which have been r e f e r r e d to as perceptual handicaps, b r a i n i n j u r y , minimal b r a i n d y s f u n c t i o n , d y s l e x i a , developmental aphasia, e t c . They do not i n c l u d e l e a r n i n g problems which are p r i m a r i l y due to v i s u a l , hearing, or motor handicaps, to mental r e t a r d a t i o n , emotional disturbance, or to environmental disadvantage (Bryan and Bryan, 1978, p.29). According to Hallahan and Cohen (1977), problems a r i s i n g from t h i s d e f i n i t i o n i n terms of i t s e t i o l o g i c a l base, the s p e c i f i c a t i o n of who i s not to be i n c l u d e d , and the d i f f i c u l t i e s i n the measurement of psych-o l o g i c a l processes have led to p e r s i s t e n t c r i t i c i s m . Bryan and Bryan, commenting on the e t i o l o g i c a l base, noted: The i m p l i c a t i o n of organ d i s t r e s s presented the d i a g n o s t i c i a n w i t h grave d i f f i c u l t i e s . The problem i s that the educational d i a -g n o s t i c i a n i s l i m i t e d to e v a l u a t i o n of i n t e l l e c t u a l and s o c i a l be-haviour. The stronger the d i r e c t evidence f o r b r a i n damage, such as s e i z u r e s or p a r a l y s i s , the l e s s l i k e l y the d i a g n o s t i c c o n c l u s i o n i s to be 'minimal' damage. The l e s s d i r e c t the medical evidence, the more the r e l i a n c e upon s o c i a l and academic performance, and the more l i k e l y the d iagnosis of 'minimal b r a i n d y s f u n c t i o n ' . By d e f i n i t i o n , the linkage of b r a i n damage with l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s through d i r e c t evidence becomes an i m p o s s i b i l i t y (1978, p.29). C r i t i c s of the e x c l u s i o n component of the d e f i n i t i o n "... c o r r e c t l y pointed out that many of these excluded youngsters a l s o e x h i b i t symptoms of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and i t i s often impossible to d i s c e r n which handicap i s p r i -mary" (Lerner, 1976, p.10). In a d d i t i o n to these two problems, the meas-urement of p s y c h o l o g i c a l processes i s not yet r e a l i z a b l e . Although researchers cannot agree on a d e f i n i t i o n of l e a r n i n g d i s -a b i l i t i e s , the discrepancy between a c t u a l achievement and expected achievement, or p o t e n t i a l , i s common to a l l approaches (Adams, 1973; Duane, 1974; Lerner, 1976; Matejcek, 1971; Wallace and McLoughlin, 1975). 15 On the b a s i s of t h i s commonality and the i n c o n c l u s i v i t y of research i n the problem areas of the d e f i n i t i o n , Hallahan and Cohen proposed that "... i t i s more l o g i c a l to use the term ' l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y ' as a conceptual framework ra t h e r than as a category" (1977, p.133). Using the term i n t h i s way an i n d i v i d u a l w i t h a l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y would be one who was achie v i n g at a l e v e l below that suggested by h i s p o t e n t i a l (Hallahan and Cohen, 1977). The Hallahan and Cohen (1977) approach i s used i n t h i s study as i t both d e l i m i t s the key feature of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y and has a p p l i c a b i l i t y to research. Therefore, a large discrepancy between expected achievement, based on highest grade completed and i n t e l l i g e n c e t e s t scores, and a c t u a l achievement, based on standardized t e s t scores, would i n d i c a t e a l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y . Operational D e f i n i t i o n of Learning D i s a b i l i t y A completely thorough approach to the diagnosis of l e a r n i n g d i s a b -i l i t i e s would i n v o l v e medical, p s y c h o l o g i c a l and educational t e s t b a t t e r i e s (Bryan and Bryan, 1978; Bush and Waugh, 1976; Lerner, 1976; M a t t i s and Rapin, 1975). The aim of such comprehensive d i f f e r e n t i a l diagnosis i s p r e s c r i p t i v e . D i f f e r e n t i a l d i a g n o s i s , however, i s not appropriate when the primary aim i s i d e n t i f i c a t i o n . According to Ullman, "measurements of underachievement o f f e r a u s e f u l approach to the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n and measurement of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y " (1971, p.188). Although underachievement i s not synonymous with l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y , "a s i g n i f i c a n t d i s p a r i t y between general a b i l i t y and academic achievement should, o b v i o u s l y , be a prominent c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of a l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d p u p i l " (Goodman and Mann, 1976, pp.42-43). D i f f i c u l t i e s a r i s e when t h i s discrepancy must be o p e r a t i o n a l i z e d to 16 give an index of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y . To date there i s no s i n g l e accept-able o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n (Applebee, 1971; Gaddes, 1976; Hallahan and Cohen, 1977; Hammill, 1978; Lerner, 1976). The most common p r a c t i c e i s to consider i n d i v i d u a l s achieving at one and a h a l f to two years below grade l e v e l as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d (Gaddes, 1976; Goodman and Mann, 1976; M a t t i s et a l . , 1975; Walzer and Richmond, 1973). . According to Gaddes, research has i n d i c a t e d "... that using a f i x e d academic r e t a r d a t i o n lag at a l l school ages to define e d u c a t i o n a l l y I i m -p a i r e d c h i l d r e n i s i l l o g i c a l and s c i e n t i f i c a l l y untenable" (1976, p.15). Applebee drew on research r e s u l t s which used a f i x e d r e t a r d a t i o n l a g f o r a l l i n d i v i d u a l s to conclude th a t : The percentage of readers l a b e l l e d 'disabled' (and hence the i n -cidence) i s a sh a r p l y r i s i n g f u n c t i o n of age. And w h i l e one can argue that d i f f e r e n t forms of r e t a r d a t i o n may have d i f f e r e n t ages of m a n i f e s t a t i o n , t h i s w i l l h a r d l y e x p l a i n a r i s e i n incidence from l e s s than 2 percent at the beginning of t h i r d grade to n e a r l y 30 percent by the end of the n i n t h (1971, p.95). Although other attempts (Lerner, 1976; Goodman and Mann, 1976) have been made to q u a n t i f y l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , the l e a r n i n g q u o t i e n t , de-veloped by Myklebust et a l . (1970), and the use of r e g r e s s i o n equations to determine reading d i s a b i l i t y , developed by Yule et a l . (1974), have been the two most s i g n i f i c a n t attempts to c o n t r o l f o r the problems inherent i n the use of f i x e d r e t a r d a t i o n l a g s . Myklebust et a l . (1970) took the r a t i o of attainment to expectancy age to y i e l d a l e a r n i n g quotient. The attainment age i s a transformation of achievement scores, o r i g i n a l l y ex-pressed i n terms of grade l e v e l , to age e q u i v a l e n t s . The expectancy age i s the average of c h r o n o l o g i c a l age, grade age, as derived from norms of the average age i n a given grade placement, and mental age as derived from measures of i n t e l l i g e n c e . Myklebust et a l . took An IQ score of 90 ... as the lower l e v e l of i n t e l l i g e n c e to be i n -17 eluded i n the experimental group. Therefore, 90% e f f i c i e c n y was defined as adequate f u n c t i o n i n g . This being the c r i t e r i a of ad-equacy, a l e a r n i n g quotient of 89 or below was taken as i n d i c a t i v e of under-achievement (1970, p.79). The Yule et a l . study r e j e c t e d the n o t i o n of achievement r a t i o s on the b a s i s of r e g r e s s i o n e f f e c t s , namely: Whenever the c o r r e l a t i o n between measures (such as mental age and reading age) i s l e s s than p e r f e c t , the c h i l d r e n who are w e l l above average on one measure w i l l be l e s s superior on the other and those who are w e l l below average on the f i r s t measure w i l l be l e s s i n -f e r i o r on the second (1974, p.3). Consequently, they chose to use r e g r e s s i o n equations to p r e d i c t the reading attainment expected on the ba s i s of c o r r e l a t i o n between the p r e d i c t o r v a r i a b l e (IQ) and the c r i t e r i o n v a r i a b l e (reading s c o r e ) . Neither of these two o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s , as they stand, are ap-p l i c a b l e to the present study. F i r s t l y , as the population studied i s adult the concept of grade age i s not a p p l i c a b l e . Consequently, the Myklebust et a l . (1970) d e f i n i t i o n cannot be used. Secondly, using the re g r e s s i o n equation approach i s e f f e c t i v e only i f two assumptions of homo-geneity are met. According to Applebee: The f i r s t i s the assumption that the c r i t e r i o n v a r i a b l e i s normally d i s t r i b u t e d , r e f l e c t i n g no q u a l i t a t i v e s h i f t s i n the performance of good, average, and poor readers. ... The second assumption of homo-geneity i s that each subject's reading achievement i s being d e t e r -mined by the same r e g r e s s i o n equation that determines the achieve-ment of every other subject i n the sample (1971, p.103). I f the r e g r e s s i o n equation was s u f f i c i e n t l y g eneral, the second assumption may be made. In the Yule et a l . (1974) study, however, the r e g r e s s i o n equation was d i f f e r e n t f o r d i f f e r i n g age groups. As such, i t s a p p l i c -a b i l i t y to a d u l t s i n general i s not yet r e a l i z a b l e . An o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , to be used with an ad u l t p o p u l a t i o n , must be gene r a l , that i s , not age or grade s p e c i f i c . I t must a l s o d i f f e r e n t i a t e between low achievement, which may be e x p l i c a b l e i n terms of low i n t e l l i g e n c e , and underachivement which cannot be explained 18 i n terms of low i n t e l l i g e n c e . D i f f e r e n c e scores w i l l be taken f o r two v a r i a b l e s , namely; a c t u a l achievement l e v e l , as measured by an achievement t e s t , and highest grade completed. I n t e l l i g e n c e , as measured by an IQ t e s t , w i l l be used as a weighting f a c t o r to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between equal d i f f e r e n c e scores on the bas i s of expected achievement. The d i f f e r e n c e scores w i l l be normalized to avoid using a f i x e d academic r e t a r d a t i o n l a g and a r t i f i c i a l l y i n f l a t i n g i ncidence f i g u r e s . Normalizing d i f f e r n c e scores would then have regard f o r Applebee's contention that " i t i s c e r t a i n l y more reasonable to expect that a 2-yr d e f i c i t i s i n some sense a much l a r g e r d e f i c i t f o r a t h i r d than f o r a n i n t h grader" (1971, p.96). Normalization enables l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s to be described i n terms of an academic l a g of one year f o r every three years of school i n g completed, which i s w i t h i n acceptable l i m i t s (Gaddes, 1976). Then l e t t i n g x^= a c t u a l achievement (measured by an achievement t e s t ) x^= highest grade completed IQ= score on i n t e l l i g e n c e t e s t , the expression f o r l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i s developed as f o l l o w s . Since an i n d i v i d u a l i s considered l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d when he i s achieving below an expected l e v e l , an expression f o r expected achievement must be developed. I n t e l l i g e n c e i s a p r e d i c t o r of achievement i n school and must be used when determining expected achievement. According to Yule et a l . (1974), the mean reading score and IQ are both near zero i n the normal d i s t r i b u t i o n of these scores i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . They found, however, that IQ was not l i n e a r l y r e l a t e d to reading achievement. They c i t e d a mean IQ of +1.42 SD and a mean reading score of +0.825 SD f o r the super i o r IQ group, and a mean IQ of -1.388 SD 19 and a mean reading score of -0.839 SD f o r the below average IQ group. The expression f o r expected achievement w i l l use the highest grade completed by the i n d i v i d u a l and weight i t by IQ i n such a fashion that those i n d i v i d u a l s w i t h an IQ of 100 w i l l be expected to achieve r i g h t at grade l e v e l . This IQ weighting f u n c t i o n must be w r i t t e n i n such a way that f o r IQ's greater than 100 the expected achievement w i l l only be s l i g h t l y above the highest grade completed. For those IQ's w e l l below 100, the expected achievement should be c l o s e r to the mean as i n d i c a t e d by Yule et a l . (1974). An expression s a t i s f y i n g these c o n d i t i o n s , where expected achievement i s denoted by x^, i s x^ = X2(IQ/100) . Using a r a t i o normalizes the IQ f a c t o r . The use of a f r a c t i o n a l exponent s a t i s f i e s the requirements f o r the weighting value of IQ, that i s , increases r a p i d l y f o r IQ^lOO, and more slowly f o r IQ>100. The choice of % as the exponent i s a r b i t r a r y . A d i f f e r e n c e score, denoted by A, w i l l be taken between t h i s expected achievement and a c t u a l achievement as f o l l o w s : is = ( x ^ - x ^ / x ^ , where x^ i s used to normalize the expression. Then, c o n s i d e r i n g a discrepancy of one grade f o r every three grades completed as i n d i c a t i v e of a l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y , the c o n d i t i o n f o r a l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y w i l l be that ^ ^ - 1 / 3 . In a d d i t i o n to t h i s d i s c r e p -ancy component, the c r i t e r i a of sensory intactment, that i s , adequate hearing and v i s i o n a f t e r c o r r e c t i o n , and i n s t r u c t i o n i n the E n g l i s h l a n -guage must be imposed. LEARNING DISABILITIES AND INMATE POPULATIONS This study i s d i v i d e d i n t o two p a r t s . The f i r s t considers the i n -cidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , as defined by the o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n 20 given i n the previous s e c t i o n , i n an inmate pop u l a t i o n . Consequently, r e -search r e l e v a n t to incidence estimates are reviewed i n t h i s s e c t i o n . The second part focuses on research r e l a t i n g l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s to s o c i o -economic and c r i m i n a l v a r i a b l e s . Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s Estimates of the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n the general p o p u l a t i o n range, depending on the c r i t e r i a used i n i d e n t i f i c a t i o n , from 1 to 30 percent (Lerner, 1 9 7 6 ; Minskoff, 1 9 7 3 ) . The acceptable range i s between 3 and 16 percent (Gaddes, 1 9 7 6 ; Hammill, 1 9 7 8 ; Walzer and Richmond, 1 9 7 3 ) . This i s i n agreement w i t h the 7 . 5 percent reported by Myklebust et a l . ( 1 9 7 0 ) , and the 3 . 9 to 9 . 9 percent reported by Yule et a l . ( 1 9 7 4 ) . Given that the i n t e l l i g e n c e of inmates i s not at variance w i t h the general population ( G r i f f i n , 1 9 7 8 ; Guze, 1 9 7 6 ; K i r b y et a l . , 1 9 7 2 ; Megargee and Bohn, 1 9 7 9 ; Mauser, 1 9 7 4 ) , two bodies of research i n d i c a t e that an inmate pop u l a t i o n would have a higher incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s -a b i l i t i e s than i s found i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . 1 . Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s i n P r i s o n Populations and i n  J u v e n i l e Delinquent Populations Even though few studies of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n inmate popul-a t i o n s are a v a i l a b l e , those s t u d i e s that have been done i n d i c a t e a high r a t e of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . In d e s c r i b i n g an unpublished study by Sherk, Hayes noted: Sherk tested a hundred randomly s e l e c t e d inmates of a c o r r e c t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n a f t e r removing those w i t h below average i n t e l l i g e n c e from h i s sample. ... In t h i s randomly s e l e c t e d sample of normal i n t e l l i g e n c e , almost twenty-five percent were d e f i n i t e l y d y s l e x i c - that i s , they could not d i s t i n g u i s h up from down, l e f t from r i g h t , the l e t t e r s of the alphabet and so on ( 1 9 7 2 , p.1 4 5 ) . An e a r l i e r study by K e l l y et a l . quoted f i g u r e s c o l l e c t e d by the U.S. 21 P e n i t e n t i a r y at Marion ^ . I l l i n o i s which "... revealed that 19% of our c l o s e r s e c u r i t y group gave evidence of a l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y using even f a i r l y gross screening methods while 41% of our minimum s e c u r i t y group seemed so impaired" (1969, p.5). Poremba r e f e r r e d to Walle's research of 128 s o c i o p a t h i c c r i m i n a l s i n which " ... 50 percent were found to have c l i n i c a l l y diagnosed d i s o r d e r s of speech and communication" (1975, p.126). Inmate l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s have not been s y s t e m a t i c a l l y s t u d i e d . In a recent study of inmate l e a r n i n g p o t e n t i a l by Waksman et a l . (1979), a l l references were to research i n the j u v e n i l e delinquent p o p u l a t i o n . Waksman et a l . d i d not c l a r i f y the issue of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and adult c r i m i n a l s f o r they r e j e c t e d "... the no t i o n of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y and the conventional methods of psychometric assessment" (1979, p.11), and d i r e c t e d t h e i r a t t e n t i o n to Feuerstein's (1974) concept of l e a r n i n g pot-e n t i a l . As the issue of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n adult c r i m i n a l popul-a t i o n s has not yet been r e s o l v e d , d e r i v a t i v e information from the juv -e n i l e delinquent p o p u l a t i o n must be used. I n f e r r i n g incidence from the j u v e n i l e delinquent p o p u l a t i o n i s j u s t -i f i e d as there e x i s t s an accepted s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p among academic f a i l u r e , j u v e n i l e delinquency and adult c r i m i n a l i t y . A research study of high school cohorts by Polk i n d i c a t e d that "... among the small group of i n d i v i d u a l s who had both delinquent and academically unsuccessful l a b e l s the l e v e l of adu l t c r i m i n a l i t y was qu i t e high (83%)" (1976, p.38). In a d d i t i o n Berman (1974) confirmed that 75 percent of in c a r c e r a t e d a d u l t s had a h i s t o r y of j u v e n i l e delinquency. As mentioned i n Chapter 1, the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s estimated f o r the j u v e n i l e delinquent population i s very h i g h , ranging from 22 to 90.4 percent (Murray, 1976). Studies by Bachara and Zaba 22 (1978), who reported a f i g u r e of 60 percent, Berman (1974), who reported 70 percent, and Rice (1970), who reported a r a t e of 68 percent, f u r t h e r support t h i s high i n c i d e n c e . This research suggests that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s would be high i n an inmate pop u l a t i o n . 2. E d u c a t i o n a l Attainment and I l l i t e r a c y i n P r i s o n s As noted i n Chapter 1, inmates have a lower educational attainment than i s found i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . Figures d e s c r i b i n g the educ-a t i o n a l attainment of inmates of American f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r i e s vary w i d e l y . According to C o r t r i g h t (1965), 98 percent of inmates have l e s s than a high school education. Taggart (1972) sta t e d that 60 percent have l e s s than a high school education. These f i g u r e s become meaningful when one considers that 50 percent of inmates have l e s s than an eighth grade education (Reagan and Stoughton, 1976: Seashore et a l . , 1976). Taggart (1972) and L e v i n et a l . (1971) r e -ported that the median of the number of completed school years was equiv-a l e n t to an eighth grade. Despite the f a c t that inmates have had at l e a s t some primary s c h o o l i n g , i l l i t e r a c y r a t e s are high. According to Cook (1977) 70 percent of inmates are i l l i t e r a t e ; 80 percent of j u v e n i l e offenders.are i l l i t e r a t e and 20 to 50 percent of a d u l t offenders can n e i t h e r read nor w r i t e according to Reagan and Stoughton (1976). This discrepancy between years of schooling and l i t e r a c y i n d i c a t e s the p o s s i b i l i t y of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y . In a d d i t i o n to t h i s discrepancy, other research has i n d i c a t e d that i n -mates achieve at a grade l e v e l below the highest grade a t t a i n e d i n school. Roberts commented that "inmates of c o r r e c t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s have of t e n been e d u c a t i o n a l l y diagnosed, based on standardized achievement t e s t s as 23 having a median educational r e t a r d a t i o n of between three and f i v e grades" (1971, p.30). Seashore et a l . (1976) found that inmates achieved two or three years below grade l e v e l and, more r e c e n t l y , Megargee and Bohn (1979) found that achievement l e v e l s lagged about two and a h a l f grade l e v e l s below academic attainment. The discrepancy between educational attainment and both l i t e r a c y and achievement l e v e l s , the high incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n the j u v e n i l e delinquent p o p u l a t i o n , and the p r e l i m i n a r y research of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n adult inmate populations i n d i c a t e that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t e s should be s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher i n an inmate pop-u l a t i o n than i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s and I t s C o r r e l a t e s The second part of t h i s study focuses on the r e l a t i o n s h i p between l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and the socio-economic status of the inmates' parents, the employment h i s t o r y of inmates, the type of offence, and the number of previous c o n v i c t i o n s . 1. Socio-Economic Status of Parents Studies of the f a m i l y h i s t o r y of l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d c h i l d r e n has y i e l d e d i n c o n s i s t e n t r e s u l t s . Anderson (1974) and Duane (1974) found that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s increases w i t h decreasing s o c i o -economic s t a t u s . Rutter and Yule (1975), on the other hand, found that although general reading backwardness was associated w i t h a lower s o c i a l c l a s s , reading r e t a r d a t i o n or d i s a b i l i t y was not. S i m i l a r l y , c o n f l i c t i n g research r e s u l t s have been given i n terms of f a m i l y s i z e . Rutter et a l . (1975) determined that reading d i s a b i l i t y was associated w i t h large f a m i l y s i z e , whereas Dykman et a l . (1973) found i t was not. 24 I f , as i n some t h e o r e t i c a l approaches, one assumes that socio-econ^ omic f a c t o r s are c a u s a l l y r e l a t e d to l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y , then the n o t i o n that l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y i s as s o c i a t e d w i t h low socio-economic status i s s i g n i f i c a n t because inmates are t y p i c a l l y from H o w ' socio-economic back-grounds (Powers, 1968; Seashore et a l . , 1976). The r e l a t i o n s h i p between the socio-economic backgrounds of a m a j o r i t y of inmates and l e a r n i n g d i s -abled suggests that the socio-economic backgrounds of those inmates ass-essed as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d would be s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from normal l e a r n i n g inmates. 2. Employment H i s t o r y of Inmates Although the employment prospects of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d have not yet been s y s t e m a t i c a l l y s t u d i e d , i t i s f e l t "... that about 75 percent of a l l secondary l e a r n i n g - d i s a b l e d students leave high school unemployed, un-employable, and without plans f o r a job or job t r a i n i n g " (Washburn, 1975, p.32). Furt h e r , these students have l i m i t e d chances to a t t a i n high adult socio-economic status as t h e i r career options are r e s t r i c t e d to those i n -v o l v i n g l i t t l e w r i t t e n communication (Connolly, 1971). Education i s d i r e c t l y l i n k e d to post-school success and low educ-a t i o n a l l e v e l s have been c i t e d as predisposing f a c t o r s of c r i m i n a l be-haviour. Causal r e l a t i o n s h i p s are p o s i t e d as: "Low educational attainment leads to l i m i t e d employment, o c c u p a t i o n a l , and earnings a l t e r n a t i v e s . Given l i m i t e d c hoices, the l e s s educated person i s l i k e l y to pursue i l l e g a l means of achiev i n g higher status and income" (Levi n et a l . , 1971, p.10). Even though t h i s proposed causal r e l a t i o n s h i p remains a contentious i s s u e , research has i n d i c a t e d that.a m a j o r i t y of c r i m i n a l s have poor em-ployment h i s t o r i e s (Guze, 1976). Taggart c i t e d r e s u l t s of a survey of releasees from American f e d e r a l and s t a t e prisons which showed "... that 11 percent had never been employed and more than h a l f had been employed 25 a t o t a l of less than two years before incarceration even though the med-ian age was 29" (1972, p.17). In Canada the problem i s s i m i l a r . Gardy (1971) found that most inmates i n h i s study belonged to the lowest s o c i a l c l a s s and G r i f f i n (1978) expressed concern at the number of young inmates who had never held a job. Since a learning disabled i n d i v i d u a l who does not succeed i n the ed-ucational system has poor employment opportunities, and since most inmates have poor employment h i s t o r i e s , i t i s f e l t that those inmates who are learning disabled w i l l have s i g n i f i c a n t l y poorer employment h i s t o r i e s than the r e s t of the inmate population. 3. Type of Offence Learning disabled c h i l d r e n and adolescents are characterized by gen-e r a l immaturity, poor impulse c o n t r o l , and low f r u s t r a t i o n l e v e l s (Anderson, 1974; Brutten et a l . , 1973; Connolly, 1971; Lerner, 1976; Mauser, 1974; Myklebust et a l . , 1971; Wender, 1971). Spears and Weber compared the learning disabled to normal learning c h i l d r e n , noting that the learning disabled c h i l d "... has a poor(er) self-image, manifests more anxiety and over-reactiveness, i s overly s e n s i t i v e , shows lower f r u s t r a t i o n thresholds, and i s noticeably maladaptive when i t comes to coping with stress ... and change" (1974, p.30). In addition, t h i s impulsive i n -d i v i d u a l i s unable to postpone the need for g r a t i f i c a t i o n {.Brutten et a l . , 1973). Cr i m i n o l o g i c a l research has indicated inmate behaviour t r a i t s s i m i l a r to those of the learning disabled i n d i v i d u a l . An early study commented that inmates were e r r a t i c , impetuous and immature and possessed low s e l f -esteem (Banks, 1958). Gardy, i n a study of B r i t i s h Columbia penitentiary inmates found that the 26 ... features of t h i s group included a v u l n e r a b i l i t y to r e a l or f a n c i e d t h r e a t ; the presence of fears or phobias; being nervous or anxious to the degree that minor matters are t r e a t e d as i f they were emergencies; an i n a b i l i t y to express emotions i n any v a r i a b l e , adaptive manner; and a tendency to under-control im-pulses and act w i t h i n s u f f i c i e n t thought (1971, p.53). The match between the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and inmates i s s t r i k i n g and has i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r the type of crime committed. K e l l y et a l . , i n a study of an inmate l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y , found that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d or, i n t h e i r terminology, the A s s o c i a t i o n D e f i c i e n t group ... does seem to be i n v o l v e d i n crimes where l i t t l e planning i s i n -volved, such crimes as motor v e h i c l e t h e f t and other simple t h e f t and forgery account f o r two-thirds of t h i s group. The A s s o c i a t i o n Adequate group contains a l l of the s u c c e s s f u l bank robberies (there i s one 'attempted' bank robbery i n the AD group), fewer motor v e h i c l e t h e f t s , more involved crimes ( c o u n t e r f e i t i n g , white s l a v e r y e t c . ) (1969, p. 14). K e l l y et a l . (1969) f e l t that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d had poor s e l f - c o n t r o l and thus committed more impulsive crimes. P h y s i c a l aggressiveness i s another c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the crimes committed by t h i s l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group. Hogenson, i n a study of i n -carcerated delinquent boys i n two d i f f e r e n t s t a t e s , found that "only reading f a i l u r e was found to c o r r e l a t e w i t h agression i n both populations of delinquent boys" (1974, p.167). L e v i n et a l . (1971) described a C a l -i f o r n i a study which revealed that v i o l e n t crimes were r e l a t e d to lower e d u c a t i o n a l l e v e l s . A research study by S p e l l a c y (1978) showed that v i o l e n c e was associated w i t h poorer c o g n i t i v e , language, perceptual and psychomotor a b i l i t i e s . On the b a s i s of these r e s u l t s he suggested that v i o l e n c e prone inmates had impaired b r a i n f u n c t i o n . P a r l e t t (1975) r e -l a t e d a lower f a c i l i t y w i t h language to a greater incidence of p h y s i c a l l y agressive crimes. Research has i n d i c a t e d that the behavioural c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the 27 learning disabled inmate and juvenile delinquent are manifested i n the c r i m i n a l behaviour of t h i s group, thereby implying that the learning d i s -abled inmate would commit crimes which are s i g n i f i c a n t l y more aggressive and impulsive than those committed by the normal learning inmate. 4. Number of Previous Convictions The primary concern of the corrections system is the successful i n -tegration of released inmates into society. One of the determinants of success i s educational l e v e l . Low l e v e l s of educational attainment are t i e d to d i f f i c u l t i e s i n f i n d i n g employment which, i n turn, are r e l a t e d to the number of convictions incurred by an i n d i v i d u a l . Taggart, in a follow-up study of released inmates "... found that s i x years l a t e r 65 percent had been arrested ... (since) the c r i m i n a l turns to i l l i c i t a c t i v i t i e s because of h i s f a i l u r e i n work or h i s need for income" (1972, pp.12-13). Although the l i n k between low l e v e l s of education and p e r s i s t e n t offending are strong, extrapolating t h i s to i n f e r that the learning d i s -abled group of inmates w i l l also be persistent offenders may not be j u s t -i f i e d . However, research by Tarnopol who found that "... adult arrests are shown to be inversely r e l a t e d to verbal a b i l i t y for that population" (1970, p.203), gives credence to the expectation that the learning d i s -abled group of inmates would have been convicted of a s i g n i f i c a n t l y greater number of offences than the normal learning inmates. THE HYPOTHESES This review of research i n learning d i s a b i l i t i e s and criminal be-haviour leads to the following hypotheses: Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s 1. The incidence of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s i n an inmate population w i l l be 28 s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher than the maximum r a t e of 16 percent c i t e d f o r the general p o p u l a t i o n . 2. The d i s t r i b u t i o n of the d i f f e r e n c e s between attainment l e v e l , as i n -di c a t e d by the highest grade completed, and a c t u a l achievement, as measured by an academic achievement t e s t , f o r the inmate population w i l l be s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from that of the general population. S p e c i f i c a l l y , i n the general p o p u l a t i o n the d i s t r i b u t i o n i s g e n e r a l l y normal with a s i g n i f i c a n t departure from normality at the lower end (Yule et a l . , 1974). Due to the s i g n i f i c a n t number of low achievers i n p r i s o n , i t i s expected that the departures from normality would be l a r g e r , and the d i s t r i b u t i o n may be d i s t i n c t l y bimodal or t r i m o d a l . Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s and I t s C o r r e l a t e s 1. Those inmates i d e n t i f i e d as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d w i l l have parents who are of a s i g n i f i c a n t l y lower socio-economic status than the normal inmate l e a r n e r s . 2. Those inmates i d e n t i f i e d as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d w i l l have s i g n i f i c a n t l y poorer employment h i s t o r i e s than those inmates who are not l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . S p e c i f i c a l l y : ( i ) The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates w i l l have occupations that are s i g -n i f i c a n t l y lower i n terms of socio-economic status than the non-l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates. ( i i ) The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate w i l l have changed jobs s i g n i f i c a n t l y more o f t e n than the normal l e a r n i n g inmate. ( i i i ) The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate w i l l have spent s i g n i f i c a n t l y l e s s time i n any one job than the normal inmate l e a r n e r s . 3. Those i n m a t e s . i d e n t i f i e d as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d w i l l have committed crimes that are s i g n i f i c a n t l y more aggressive than those committed by normal l e a r n i n g inmates. 29 4 . Those inmates i d e n t i f i e d as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d w i l l have committed crimes that are s i g n i f i c a n t l y more impulsive than those committed by inmates not l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . 5 . Those inmates i d e n t i f i e d as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d w i l l have been convicted of offences s i g n i f i c a n t l y more o f t e n than those inmates not l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . SUMMARY This chapter has described s e c e r a l approaches to the d e f i n i t i o n of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . An o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n to be used i n t h i s study was de r i v e d . A review of research w i t h respect to l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t e s and juv-e n i l e delinquency, and the underachievement of inmates of p r i s o n s , sug-gested that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s would be higher i n an inmate pop u l a t i o n when compared to the general p o p u l a t i o n . Examination of the common c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l s and inmates suggested that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate would be d i f f e r e n t from the r e s t of the inmate pop u l a t i o n on the f o l l o w i n g : socio-economic status of parents, employment h i s t o r y , aggressive/impulsive nature of the offence, and the number of previous c o n v i c t i o n s . 30 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY This chapter describes the population s t u d i e d , the instruments used and the procedures followed i n c o l l e c t i n g data. I t a l s o defines other v a r i a b l e s used i n the study and o u t l i n e s the data a n a l y s i s . P o p u l a t i o n The p o p u l a t i o n f o r t h i s study c o n s i s t e d of 242 inmates i n c a r c e r a t e d i n the f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r y system of B r i t i s h Columbia. I n c a r c e r a t i o n i n a f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r y occurs when an i n d i v i d u a l i s sentenced by courts to serve two or more years. Sentences of two years l e s s a day, or s h o r t e r , are served i n the p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . The 242 inmates were asked to undergo academic t e s t i n g , between October, 1979 and A p r i l , 1980, e i t h e r as part of the re g u l a r i n d u c t i o n process of the p e n i t e n t i a r y system, or on the b a s i s of requests be ed-u c a t i o n a l s t a f f w i t h i n an i n s t i t u t i o n . Inmates invloved i n the i n d u c t i o n process were admitted i n t o a p a r t i c u l a r i n s t i t u t i o n on the ba s i s of one of the f o l l o w i n g (the numbers i n brackets r e f e r to the number of inmates undergoing t h i s type of r e c e p t i o n ) : 1. warrant of committal (104), 2. t r a n s f e r between i n s t i t u t i o n s i n the B.C. re g i o n , that i s , from a higher to lower s e c u r i t y i n s t i t u t i o n , or the reverse (75), 3. parole or mandatory s u p e r v i s i o n r e v o c a t i o n (25), 4. t r a n s f e r from a d i f f e r e n t f e d e r a l r e g i o n ( 6 ) , 5. t r a n s f e r from a p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n ( 5 ) , 6. other ( 6 ) . In a d d i t i o n , 21 i n d i v i d u a l s were already i n an i n s t i t u t i o n ' s p o p u l a t i o n 31 and underwent academic t e s t i n g on the b a s i s of requests by school, or other, s t a f f . S i x i n s t i t u t i o n s used t h i s academic t e s t i n g s e r v i c e . These included two maximum s e c u r i t y i n s t i t u t i o n s , two medium s e c u r i t y i n s t i t u t i o n s , and two medium-minimum s e c u r i t y i n s t i t u t i o n s . Random sampling procedures were not employed. I t was f e l t that the sample studied would be r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of the e n t i r e p r i s o n population since a l l entrants i n t o the major r e c e i v i n g i n s t i t u t i o n s were seen. This prevented problems of s e l f - s e l e c t i o n . In a d d i t i o n , the sample s i z e of 242 out of a t o t a l p o s s i b l e p o p u l a t i o n of 1223, that i s , 20 percent, i s s u f f i c i e n t l y l a r ge f o r g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y to the e n t i r e population (see Table 1). As the number of i n d i v i d u a l s r e q u i r e d f o r representativeness i s p r o p o r t i o n a l to the square root of the t o t a l p opulation s i z e , only about 50 i n d i v i d u a l s would have been required f o r representativeness (Jessen, 1978). TABLE 1 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Inmates by Type of I n s t i t u t i o n Type of Institution''' Sample n T o t a l n Percent of T o t a l Maximum 26 148 17.6 Medium 144 509 28.3 Med ium-min imum 72 336 21.4 Minimum - 100 -Grand T o t a l 242 1093 22.1 1. This t a b l e does not i n c l u d e the Regional P s y c h i a t r i c Center which has a t o t a l p o s s i b l e p o p u l a t i o n of 130. 32 Instrumentation and Data C o l l e c t i o n Two standardized t e s t s , the Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT), by Jastak, B i j o u and Jastak (1978), and the School and College A b i l i t y T e s t s -SCAT Series I I , by the Educational T e s t i n g Service (1971) were used to assess achievement. The WRAT (1978 e d i t i o n ) i s a standardized, i n d i v i d u a l l y administered t e s t that measures achievement from kindergarten to c o l l e g e . This t e s t has been standardized on the general population i n c l u d i n g a d u l t s . Age groupings used i n t h i s study were l i s t e d i n the WRAT norms ta b l e s as f o l l o w s : 18-19 years, 20-24 years, 25-34 years, 35-44 years, 45-54 years, and 55-64 years. This study used the L e v e l I I v e r s i o n of the t e s t which i s meant f o r i n d i v i d u a l s who are 12 years o l d or ol d e r . The t e s t takes between 30 and 40 minutes to administer and gives scores on three s u b t e s t s : reading, s p e l l i n g and a r i t h m e t i c . There i s a ten minute time l i m i t on the a r i t h -metic subtest; the other two subtests have no time l i m i t . Raw scores on the subtests are converted to grade e q u i v a l e n t s , which, according to the authors, are v a l i d and r e l i a b l e measures of achievement. Grade l e v e l scores and the i n d i v i d u a l ' s age are then used to f i n d the corresponding standard and p e r c e n t i l e scores i n the norms t a b l e s . Jastak and Jastak (1978) c i t e d high r e l i a b i l i t y c o e f f i c i e n t s f o r t h i s t e s t . The content v a l i d i t y of t h i s t e s t , however, has been questioned by Merwin and Thorndike ( i n Buros, 1972). Williamson (1979), i n a study of the concurrent v a l i d i t y of the WRAT on a severely handicapped popul-a t i o n , found that the c o r r e l a t i o n s between the WRAT and SAT (Stanford Achievement Test) were s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t . In f a c t , "the r e s u l t s h i g h l y supported c o e f f i c i e n t s reported by the WRAT authors ... who used 33 other diverse populations" (Williamson, 1979, p.201). This test was used i n the present study as i t i s the only test that both covered such a wide range of achievement l e v e l s and i s normed for the adult population. As Thorndike commented, the WRAT i s useful for t e s t i n g "... i n d i v i d u a l l y persons of such diverse a b i l i t y or background that one cannot t e l l i n advance what l e v e l of test would be appropriate and needs to get a quick estimate of each person's general l e v e l of ab-i l i t y and education background" ( i n Buros, 1972, p.68). For t h i s reason i t i s widely used as part of a test battery i n the assessment of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s (Kline and Kli n e , 1975; Mattis and Rapin, 1975; Rice D., 1970; Tarnopol and Tarnopol, 1979; Williamson, 1979). The School and College A b i l i t y Test - SCAT Series II (1971 e d i t i o n ) i s a standardized, group-administered test that measures developed ac-ademic a b i l i t y . I t i s meant to be used as a predictor of academic per-formance. This test was standardized "... on a c a r e f u l l y selected sample of students, chosen to be representative of the student population of the nation." (SCAT Handbook, 1973, p.5). Norms tables were given for i n d i v -i d u a l grade l e v e l s from the spring of grade 3 to the spring of grade 14. There are four l e v e l s of d i f f i c u l t y and two forms for the SCAT test as follows: Level 4A, 4B for grades 3 spring to grade 6 f a l l Level 3A, 3B for grades 6 spring to grade 9 f a l l Level 2A, 2B for grades 9 spring to grade 12 f a l l Level 1A, IB for grades 13 f a l l to grade 14 spring. This study used a l l four l e v e l s and the B form of the t e s t . The l e v e l given to an i n d i v i d u a l was determined by the researcher's subjective assessment of achievement l e v e l based on the highest grade completed and the WRAT scores. 34 Although t h i s t e s t was designed to measure power ra t h e r than speed, the authors imposed a f o r t y minute time l i m i t . As power was the i n t e n t of the SCAT authors, i t was decided that f o r an out-of-school p o p u l a t i o n the time l i m i t would be waived. I t was found t h a t , on the average, i n d i v -i d u a l s took between 40 and 60 minutes to complete the t e s t . There are two subtest i n the SCAT t e s t , namely; v e r b a l and q u a n t i -t a t i v e , y i e l d i n g three scores: v e r b a l , q u a n t i t a t i v e and t o t a l . The v e r b a l subtest, c o n s i s t i n g of f i f t y analogy items, i s designed to measure an i n -d i v i d u a l ' s understanding of word meanings. Butcher found that these items were w e l l constructed and could be "... expected to have wide c r o s s - c u l -t u r a l v a l i d i t y i n a l l English-speaking c o u n t r i e s ..." ( i n Buros, 1972, p.658). The q u a n t i t a t i v e subtest, c o n s i s t i n g of f i f t y q u a n t i t a t i v e com-par i s o n items, i s designed to measure an i n d i v i d u a l ' s understanding of fundamental number operations. Three raw scores, based on the number of c o r r e c t responses f o r each of the v e r b a l and q u a n t i t a t i v e subtests and the t o t a l number r i g h t , are used to determine converted scores f o r each l e v e l of the t e s t . Converted scores were used to determine the f o l l o w i n g : 1. the corresponding p e r c e n t i l e score f o r the highest grade completed by the i n d i v i d u a l i n the r e g u l a r school system, and 2. the grade i n the norms t a b l e f o r which the corresponding p e r c e n t i l e score was 50. < As a p e r c e n t i l e score of 50 gives the average achievement f o r each grade, i t was decided that the grade derived i n t h i s f a s h i o n would represent the achievement grade l e v e l , or the grade equivalent score. McKie and Koopman ( i n Buros, 1972) found that t h i s t e s t demonstrated i m p r e s s i v e l y high r e l i a b i l i t i e s , although they suggested that the v a l i d i t y data could be supplemented. Butcher ( i n Buros, 1972), on the other hand, 35 found that the p r e d i c t i v e and concurrent v a i l i d i t y , as assessed by com-pa r i s o n w i t h school grades and other standard measures, was adequate and w i t h i n acceptable ranges. This t e s t was p r i m a r i l y used as a supplement to the WRAT reading t e s t . As the WRAT reading t e s t i n v o l v e s reading words o r a l l y , i t was de-cided that another t e s t , which required an i n d i v i d u a l to know what the words meant, be used. Although the norms of the t e s t are not appropriate f o r an adul t p o p u l a t i o n , the researcher thought i t was important to see how the po p u l a t i o n studied compared to the i n - s c h o o l p o p u l a t i o n . In add-i t i o n , the authors of the SCAT handbook stated that the SCAT had b e t t e r than average d i s c r i m i n a t i n g power .for d i s c r i m i n a t i n g between students having v a r y i n g degrees of developed a b i l i t y . I t was, thus, thought that t h i s t e s t may give a f i n e r measure than the WRAT of an i n d i v i d u a l ' s achievement. The researcher took an educational h i s t o r y of the inmate p r i o r to adm i n i s t e r i n g the t e s t s . This educational h i s t o r y e l i c i t e d the f o l l o w i n g : 1. highest grade a t t a i n e d i n the r e g u l a r school system, 2 . highest academic achievement received as an a d u l t , 3. p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n educational a c t i v i t i e s since l e a v i n g the r e g u l a r school system ( t h i s included p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n correspondence courses, upgrading, v o c a t i o n a l , u n i v e r s i t y or general i n t e r e s t courses). Other data, the r e s u l t of i n t e r v i e w i n g and t e s t i n g performed by such p e n i t e n t i a r y s t a f f as p s y c h o l o g i s t s and c l a s s i f i c a t i o n o f f i c e r s , used i n the study was obtained from the inmates' i n s t i t u t i o n a l f i l e s . Educational data i n the inmates 1 f i l e s was c o n s i s t e n t w i t h the information given to the researcher. A note of cau t i o n i s i n order here, p r i o r to l i s t i n g a l l the v a r -i a b l e s used i n the study. The researcher came across v a r y i n g p r a c t i c e s 36 i n f i l e keeping standards, thus, there are o c c a s i o n a l cases of incomplete or missing data. In a d d i t i o n , data on the f a m i l y h i s t o r y of inmates was o f t e n scant, probably because t h i s was not thought to be p a r t i c u l a r l y r e -levant f o r an a d u l t p o p u l a t i o n . Data was obtained from the inmates' f i l e s as f o l l o w s : 1. Biographic_Data Personal Data: age, place of b i r t h , e t h n ic o r i g i n , m a r i t a l s t a t u s , num-ber of c h i l d r e n , r e l i g i o n , Revised Beta IQ Family H i s t o r y : home s t a t u s , that i s , the person r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the care of the inmate as a c h i l d , employment status of parents, number of s i b l i n g s , f a m i l y c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y Medical H i s t o r y : apparent major ailment or d e f e c t , a l c o h o l usage, drug usage 2. Emplo_yment_Dat£: employment status at the time of the offence, occup-a t i o n , longest period of employment i n any one job, number of jobs held 3. Criminal_D£ta: aggregate sentence, number of sentences ( t o t a l charges), major offence, that i s , the offence r e s u l t i n g i n the present i n c a r c e r -a t i o n f o r which the longest sentence was given, l i f e t i m e major offence, that i s , the offence f o r which the longest sentence ever was given, age at f i r s t c o n v i c t i o n , number of previous f e d e r a l commitments, t o t a l length of sentence served i n f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r i e s , number of previous p r o v i n c i a l commitments, t o t a l length of time served i n p r o v i n c i a l i n -s t i t u t i o n s . The major offence and the l i f e t i m e major offence were considered aggressive or impulsive as f o l l o w s : ( i ) An aggressive crime was one which r e s u l t e d i n the i n j u r y , or attempted i n j u r y , of an i n d i v i d u a l . These included such offences as murder, man-slau g h t e r , rape and a s s a u l t . Non-aggressive offences included such o f f -37 ences as fraud and v i o l a t i o n s of the N a r c o t i c s C o n t r o l Act. ( i i ) An impulsive crime was defined as one which involved a minimal amount of time from the planning of the offence to i t s execution. These included such crimes as breaking and e n t e r i n g and simple t h e f t . Non-impulsive crimes included such crimes as conspiracy and embezzling. Procedure The researcher was contracted by the Education and T r a i n i n g D i v i s i o n of the C o r r e c t i o n s Service of Canada to set up an academic t e s t i n g program This academic t e s t i n g program was to become a r e g u l a r part of the recep-t i o n process i n the f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r i e s of the P a c i f i c Region, that i s , B r i t i s h Columbia and the Yukon. Results from t h i s t e s t i n g program are used i n t h i s study. The researcher took an e d u c a t i o n a l h i s t o r y of each inmate and then administered the t e s t s i n t h i s order: 1. Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT) by Jastak, B i j o u and Jastak, 1978 e d i t i o n . ' Subtests were given i n the f o l l o w i n g order; s p e l l i n g , reading a r i t h m e t i c . 2. School and College A b i l i t y Test, SCAT - Series I I , 1971 e d i t i o n by Ed-u c a t i o n a l T e s t i n g S e r v i c e . Testing circumstances v a r i e d from i n s t i t u t i o n to i n s t i t u t i o n and depended on the s e c u r i t y c l a s s i f i c a t i o n of the i n s t i t u t i o n and the a v a i l a b l e f a c i l i t i e s . The researcher administered the WRAT on a one-to-one b a s i s to a l l but 21 of the p a r t i c i p a t i n g inmates. Of these 21 inmates 2 had already taken t h i s t e s t p r i o r to the i n i t i a t i o n of the t e s t i n g pro-gram, and 19 had been tested i n small groups by a teaching a s s i s t a n t i n one of the medium s e c u r i t y i n s t i t u t i o n s . The SCAT was administered to a l l inmates by the researcher. Although 38 t h i s test was meant to be given to groups of i n d i v i d u a l s , i t was found that group te s t taking was not always p r a c t i c a l as the number of inmates seen i n one day would vary considerably. In addition, the classroom type te s t i n g appeared to embarass some of the i n d i v i d u a l s . Group test taking was also not allowed for s e c u r i t y reasons i n the maximum security i n s t i t -u t ions. Consequently, i n d i v i d u a l s were shown what they were expected to do and were sent into an adjacent area to write the t e s t . Of the 242 inmates interviewed only 192, or 79 percent, completed both t e s t s . Of the remaining 50, 19 completed one t e s t and 31 refused to undergo t e s t i n g . Reasons for incompletion and r e f u s a l are given i n Table 2. TABLE 2 Reasons for not Completing Both Tests or Refusing Testing Reason Incompletion Refusal Had Already Undergone Testing Too Old English was a Second Language Not Interested Already in School I l l i t e r a t e Other Unknown Total 19 31 Except for the unknown category, where those who had written one test simply handed i n a blank SCAT t e s t , and the refusers who would not give a reason, a l l the other reasons were, to the researcher, appropriate. The i n d i v i d u a l s who were i l l i t e r a t e or who had learnt English as a second 1 4 3 2 3 6 9 4 3 8 2 1 2 2 39 language could do parts of the WRAT, but did not have the reading s k i l l s needed for the SCAT. A l l three i n d i v i d u a l s who were i l l i t e r a t e had never gone to school. The two who t r i e d the WRAT had taught themselves to read and write a few words. The in d i v i d u a l s who stated that they were i n school had been attending classes i n one of the i n s t i t u t i o n s , and could see no point i n taking achievement t e s t s . Data Analysis Raw data for the 242 subjects were typed, using the University of B r i t i s h Columbia computer f a c i l i t i e s , into a f i l e . The f i l e contents were v a l i d a t e d for accuracy. Data were analyzed using the University of B r i t i s h Columbia's adaptation of SPSS ( S t a t i s t i c a l Package for the Soci a l Sciences). This study was concerned with the d e s c r i p t i o n of the educational background of inmates, the incidence of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s and the determination of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between learning d i s a b i l i t i e s and socio-economic and cri m i n a l v a r i a b l e s . For the d e s c r i p t i o n of the educational background of inmates, frequency counts of the variables for 242 inmates were obtained. Histograms for educational attainment were produced. A t- t e s t for the differences i n the mean le v e l s of educational attainment between the inmate and general population was done by hand. Data for the l e v e l s of attainment for the general population were obtained from the S t a t i s t i c s Canada 1976 census. In determining the incidence of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s only data for the 192 inmates who had completed both tests were analyzed. Difference scores were computed and the d i s t r i b u t i o n s p l o t t e d . Incidence of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s was determined and analysis of the departures from the i n -cidence figures c i t e d for the general population was performed by hand. 40 F i n a l l y , hypothesized r e l a t i o n s h i p s between l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and socio-economic s t a t u s , employment h i s t o r y and c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y were analyzed. T-tests f o r the d i f f e r e n c e s of the means f o r the i n t e r v a l v a r -i a b l e s , such as socio-economic index, were performed and a Mann-Whitney U t e s t f o r the d i f f e r e n c e s on the o r d i n a l v a r i a b l e s , that i s , the agg-r e s s i v e / i m p u l s i v e nature of the offence, was performed. Discriminant a n a l y s i s was performed to determine which v a r i a b l e s accounted f o r most of the variance between the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal l e a r n i n g groups. 41 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS This chapter i s d i v i d e d i n t o three p a r t s . Part I presents the char-a c t e r i s t i c s of the e n t i r e sample (n=242). In part I I the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , based on the data f o r the 192 inmates who wrote both t e s t s , i s determined. In p a r t I I I the hypotheses associated w i t h l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and socio-economic and c r i m i n a l v a r i a b l e s are t e s t e d . D i s c u s s i o n of the f i n d i n g s occur i n each p a r t . I CHARACTERISTICS OF THE SAMPLE These r e s u l t s w i l l be presented i n four s e c t i o n s : Biographic Data, Employment Data, C r i m i n a l Data, and Educational Data. The t o t a l number of v a l i d cases w i l l be denoted by n . v Biographic Data 1. Personal_Data The e n t i r e sample was male with a mean age of 29.9 years and a range of 17 to 61 years (S.D.=8.7, n v=239). S l i g h t l y more than h a l f the p o p u l a t i o n , 55.6 percent, were between 17 and 29 years o l d . Ninety percent (214) of the subjects were born i n Canada, 1.6 percent (4) were born i n the B r i t i s h I s l e s or the United States and the remaining 8.4 per-cent (20) were born i n non-English speaking c o u n t r i e s (n v=238). More than h a l f of the inmates, 55.8 percent (135) , were so c a l l e d 'Canadian' i n e t h -n i c o r i g i n , that i s , they were of B r i t i s h Isles.descendancy or had f a m i l i e s of other European o r i g i n who had l i v e d i n Canada at l e a s t one generation. Ethnic o r i g i n s were f a i r l y evenly d i v i d e d among the remaining p o p u l a t i o n w i t h 10.3 percent (25) being French, 16.1 percent (39) being European, 12.4 percent (30) being Native Indian and 5.4 percent (13) being i n the 42 'other' category, that i s , A s i a t i c , Negro, East Indian e t c . (n^=242). R e l i g i o u s a f f i l i a t i o n was dominated by the United and Roman C a t h o l i c groups, each c l a i m i n g 34.8 percent (78) of the po p u l a t i o n (n^=224). The next l a r g e s t group was the a t h e i s t s / a g n o s t i c s w i t h 42 i n d i v i d u a l s (18.8 perc e n t ) . Other common r e l i g i o n s , such as the Anglican and B a p t i s t groups, accounted f o r the remaining p o p u l a t i o n , and only 10 i n d i v i d u a l s (4.5 percent) claimed to belong to r e l i g i o u s sects l e s s common i n Canada, such as Buddhism. Si n g l e men made up the l a r g e s t p r o p o r t i o n of the popul a t i o n . The r e -maining p o p u l a t i o n was f a i r l y evenly s p l i t among those married, l i v i n g . common law, and separated or divorced (see Table 3). S i x t y percent (120) of the sample had no c h i l d r e n , 33 percent (66) had one or two c h i l d r e n , and the remaining 6 percent (14) had three or more c h i l d r e n (n v=190). TABLE 3 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by M a r i t a l Status Status n Percent Singl e 94 39.5 Married 49 20.6 Common Law 57 23.9 Separated/ Divorced 36 15.1 Widowed 2 0.8 T o t a l n =238 v 100.0 2. F a m i l y ^ ^ s t o r y As mentioned e a r l i e r data i n t h i s s e c t i o n were not always a v a i l a b l e , consequently the number of v a l i d cases i s f a i r l y s m a l l . More than h a l f of the inmates were r a i s e d by t h e i r n a t u r a l parents, 18.7 percent l i v e d w i t h one n a t u r a l parent, and the remainder l i v e d i n 43 other circumstances as shown i n Table 4. The average number of s i b l i n g s was 4.1 (S.D.=2.96, n v=193). Seventy-one percent (125) of the subjects had f a m i l i e s w i t h no c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y , 21.6 percent (38) had brothers who had a c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y , and the remaining 7.4 percent (13) had parents, or s i s t e r s , or a combination of parents and s i b l i n g s w i t h a c r i m i n a l h i s -t o r y (n =176). TABLE 4 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Childhood Home Status Status n Percent L i v e d w i t h both n a t u r a l parents 73 59.3 Lived w i t h one n a t u r a l parent 23 18.7 Lived w i t h other r e l a t i v e s 4 3.3 Adopted 6 4.9 Ward of the State 17 13.8 T o t a l n =123 V 100.0 3. Medical^ H i s t o r y Most of the subjects were i n good medical c o n d i t i o n with 84.8 percent (173) having no medical problems, and 15.2 percent (31) having a major medical problem, such as diabetes or chronic back problems (n v=204). A l c o h o l i c s accounted f o r 15.4 percent (31) of the p o p u l a t i o n . Heavy d r i n k e r s , o c c a s i o n a l d r i n k e r s and non-drinkers ac-counted f o r r e s p e c t i v e l y 40.8 percent (82), 30.3 percent (61), and 13.4 percent (27) of the p o p u l a t i o n (n v=201). Twenty-eight percent (56) of the p o p u l a t i o n claimed they d i d not use drugs, 28 percent (55) used s o f t drugs, such as marijuana, 29 percent (57) used hard drugs, such as h e r o i n , and 15 percent (30) were addicted to a drug, such as h e r o i n (n =198). 44 Employment Data F o r t y - s i x percent (53) of the subjects were employed at the time the the offence was committed, 43 percent (49) were unemployed, 9 percent (10) were on welfare and 3 percent (3) were c o l l e c t i n g unemployment i n -surance premiums. The average socio-economic index, using the B l i s h e n and McRoberts (1976) s c a l e , was 30.908 (S.D.=7.905, n v=232) which placed the inmates i n the second lowest socio-economic c l a s s . (Note: the lowest socio-economic c l a s s i s made up of scores below 30.000). A l i s t i n g of the occupations given by the subjects i s shown i n Table 5. TABLE 5 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Occupation Occupation T i t l e n Percent General Labourer 75 31.6 Con s t r u c t i o n Occupations 25 10.5 Logger 24 10.1 Truck D r i v e r / Mechanic 22 9.3 Licensed Tradesman 14 5.9 Food and Liquor Service Occupations 14 5.9 Manager/ Semi-Professional Occup. 12 5.1 Cl e r k 9 3.8 Self-Employed 8 3.4 Industry/Mining Occupations 7 3.0 Other Occupations 25 10.5 Claimed 'No Occupation' 2 0.8 T o t a l n =237 V 100.0 Although occupational t i t l e s were a v a i l a b l e f o r most of the inmates, data on the a c t u a l work h i s t o r y were not. Information on the t o t a l num-of jobs held was not a v a i l a b l e f o r 32 (13.2 percent) of the inmates. Of 45 the remaining 210 cases, 2.4 percent (5) had never h e l d a job, 10.5 per-cent (22) had many short term jobs, 7.1 percent (15) had v i r t u a l l y no work h i s t o r y , having spent most of t h e i r working l i f e i n c a r c e r a t e d , 68.6 percent (144) had he l d from 1 to 3 jobs, and 11.4 percent (24) had changed jobs from 4 to 7 times. The average of the longest time spent i n any one job was 26.98 months (S.D.=29.22, n v=153), and the median of the longest held job was 12.03 months. C r i m i n a l Data Inmates were serving an average of 6.2 years (S.D.=6.3, n^=242) f o r the present term of imprisonment.(Note: a l i f e sentence was coded to be equivalent to 25 y e a r s ) . They were serving sentences f o r an average of 3.7 charges (S.D.=7.5, n v=240), and the average longest sentence f o r any one charge was 5.7 years (S.D.=6.4, n v=242). D i s t r i b u t i o n of subjects on the major offence, that i s , the offence r e s u l t i n g i n the present i n -c a r c e r a t i o n f o r which the longest sentence was given, i s shown i n Table 6 on page 45. The average age at which the f i r s t a d u l t c o n v i c t i o n was received was 20.1 years (S.D.=5.6, n v=200). Inmates had an average of 0.8 previous f e d e r a l terms (S.D.=1.4, n^=229) and had served an average of 2.6 years (S.D.=5.1, n v=218) f e d e r a l l y . Most of the subjects had not p r e v i o u s l y served a f e d e r a l term (58.5 percent, n=134), 24.0 percent (55) had served one f e d e r a l term, 8.7 percent (20) had served two f e d e r a l terms and the remaining 8.7 percent (20) had served three or more f e d e r a l terms (n = 229). The l i f e t i m e major offence, that i s , the offence which r e s u l t e d i n the longest sentence ever i s shown i n Table 6. These inmates had an average of 2.1 previous p r o v i n c i a l terms (S.D.= 2.5, n v=208), with an average of 1.7 years served (S.D.=1.9, n v=198). In t h i s sample 28.1 percent (68) had not served a p r o v i n c i a l term and 46 TABLE 6 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Major Offence and L i f e t i m e Major Offence Major Offence L i f e t i m e Major Offence Offence n Percent n Percent (of 242) Murder 17 7.0 17 7.0 Attempted Murder 5 2.1 5 2.1 Manslaughter 8 3.3 8 3.3 As s au11 s/Wound ing 11 4.5 13 5.4 Rape/Other Sexual Offences 24 9.9 24 9.9 Armed Robbery 11 4.5 14 5.8 Robbery 35 14.5 36 14.9 Breaking and En t e r i n g 31 12.8 30 12.4 Theft/Possession of Stolen Property 16 6.6 12 5.0 Frauds 8 3.3 8 3.3 Arson 9 3.7 9 3.7 T r a f f i c i n a N a r c o t i c ( i n c l u d e s conspiracy) 21 8.7 22 9.1 Possession f o r the Purpose (of t r a f f i c k i n g ) 16 6.6 19 7.9 Other N a r c o t i c C o n t r o l Act 6 2.5 8 3.3 P a r o l e / P r i s o n Breach 15 6.2 - -Other C r i m i n a l Code 9 3.7 6 2.4 T o t a l n =242 V 100.0 n =231 V 95.5 12.0 percent (29) had been p r e v i o u s l y convicted of offences but had not served a sentence i n a p r o v i n i c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n . E d u c a tional Data Inmates completed an average of 8.89 grades (S.D.=2.2, n v=240) i n 47 the r e g u l a r school system. This i s s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from the mean 11.95 grades (S.D.=3.0) completed by the general male pop u l a t i o n f o r B.C. (t=21.55, df=239, p«<.001). The mean grade completed by the B.C. male population was determined from data i n the S t a t i s t i c s Canada 1976 census. S i g n i f i c a n c e t e s t i n g was performed using the standard t -t e s t f o r the case of separate variance estimates (see B l a l o c k , 1970, pp. 175-176). Figure 1 shows the d i s t r i b u t i o n of the highest grade com-pl e t e d i n the r e g u l a r school system by the inmates, and the d i s t r i b u t i o n of the highest grade completed by the general male p o p u l a t i o n i n B.C. In t h i s graph, u n i v e r s i t y years are recoded so t h a t , f o r example, com-p l e t i o n of second year u n i v e r s i t y i s equivalent to grade 14. Data f o r IQ was not a v a i l a b l e f o r 206 i n d i v i d u a l s . For the r e -maining 36 s u b j e c t s , the mean IQ was 99.86 (S.D.=15.2). Notations, how-ever, were made i n inmate's f i l e s i f an i n d i v i d u a l was below average i n i n t e l l i g e n c e . Four i n d i v i d u a l s were below average and one of these four was thought to be s l i g h t l y retarded although IQ t e s t i n g had not been per-formed . Over 90 percent of the subjects had been educated i n Canada. Of these 49.4 percent (118) had attended schools i n B r i t i s h Columbia, 36.1 percent (86) i n other E n g l i s h speaking provinces, 6.2 percent (15) i n Quebec, 2.5 percent (6) i n the United States and the remaining 5.7 percent (14) had attended schools i n non-English speaking c o u n t r i e s (n v=239). Considering the highest grade completed as an a d u l t , inmates educ-a t i o n a l l e v e l increased to a mean 9.98 grades (S.D.=2.5. n =240). How-v ever, t h i s i s s t i l l s i g n i f i c a n t l y lower than the highest grade a t t a i n e d by the B.C. male p o p u l a t i o n (t=12.27, df=239, p ^ . 0 0 1 ) . S i g n i f i c a n c e t e s t i n g , using separate v a r i a n c e estimates, was performed i n the same 48 FIGURE 1 Per Cent 40, 35 30 25 20 _L 15 10 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Highest Grade A t t a i n e d i n Regular School B.C. Male Population | ) Inmate Pop u l a t i o n ^ 5 5-8 9-10 11-13 1 14 1 15 1.16-17 I 18-20 21 Highest Grade A t t a i n e d 49 FIGURE 2 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Highest Grade A t t a i n e d as an Adult B.C. Male Pop u l a t i o n \ | Inmate P o p u l a t i o n < 5 5-8 9-10 11-13 14 15 16-17 18-20 21 Highest Grade A t t a i n e d 50 fashion as for the highest grade completed i n the regular school system. The d i s t r i b u t i o n of the highest grade completed by the inmate as an adult i s shown i n Figure 2 on page 48. As can be seen from Figure 1, over 80 percent of the inmates had attained a grade 10 or lower when they f i r s t l e f t school, and over 50 per-cent had attained grade 8 or lower. Although there has been some move-ment i n terms of increasing educational attainment i n adult l i f e , over 56 percent of the i n d i v i d u a l s are s t i l l at a grade 10 or lower (see F i g -ure 2). The greatest movement has been in upgrading inmates to a grade 10 or 12 l e v e l , and very l i t t l e change i s observed i n the numbers taking u n i v e r s i t y programs or advanced degrees. S l i g h t l y under h a l f the population had not p a r t i c i p a t e d i n any adult education program since leaving regular school (see Table 7). TABLE 7 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Adult Education P a r t i c i p a t i o n Adult Education n Percent None 102 42.3 Upgrading to Grade 10 32 13.3 Upgrading to Grade 12 (GED) 27 11.2 Trade/Technincal Training 43 17.8 University/College ^ (includes UVic program) 30 12.4 General Interest/ Correspondence 7 2.9 To t a l n = v =241 100.0 1. The UVic program (University of V i c t o r i a ) i s an o f f campus program, leading to a B.A. i n the humanities and s o c i a l sciences, and i s presently operating i n two of the federal p e n i t e n t i a r i e s . 51 This non-participation i s f a i r l y constant among groupings of educ-a t i o n a l l e v e l s where 42.9 percent of those a t t a i n i n g between 0 and 8 grades; 43.3 percent of those a t t a i n i n g between 9 and 10 grades; and 40.0 percent of those a t t a i n i n g 11 or more grades had not p a r t i c i p a t e d i n any adult education programs (see Table 8). Other figures l i s t e d i n Table 8 are consistent with p r e r e q u i s i t e entrance demands for trade/tech-n i c a l , upgrading and u n i v e r s i t y programs. The only p e c u l i a r i t y i s the r e l a t i v e l y high precentage of i n d i v i d u a l s (4.8 percent, n=5) who attained from 0 to 8 grades taking general i n t e r e s t or correspondence courses. TABLE 8 P a r t i c i p a t i o n i n Adult Education by Highest Grade Completed i n Regular School Highest Grade Range 0 to 8 (n=105) 9 to 10 (n=90) 11 and up (n=45) Adult Education n Percent n Percent n Percent None 45 42.9 39 43.3 18 40.0 Upgrading to Grade 10 24 22.9 8 8.9 - -Upgrading to Grade 12 12 11.4 12 13.3 3 6.7 Trade/Technical 10 9.5 19 21.1 14 31.1 University/College 9 8.6 11 12.2 9 20.0 General Interest/ Correspondence 5 4.8 1 1.1 1 2.2 Total 105 100.0 90 100.0 45 100.0 It was not known where 67 of the 139 p a r t i c i p a n t s i n adult education had attended these adult education programs. Of the remaining 72 cases, 52 62.5 percent (45) had taken part i n educational programs o f f e r e d by the p e n i t e n t i a r i e s and 37.5 percent (27) had p a r t i c i p a t e d i n adult education programs outside the f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r i e s . As such a high percentage . 2 of the inmates had p a r t i c i p a t e d i n p r i s o n educational programs, a/C a n a l y s i s was performed to see i f previous f e d e r a l commitments c o r r e s -ponded to adul t education p a r t i c i p a t i o n . Although a trend of increased p a r t i c i p a t i o n w i t h previous f e d e r a l commitments was suggested by the data, no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s were observed i n the d i s t r i b u t i o n of adult education p a r t i c i p a t i o n (^^=1.2, d f = l , p=.2). D i s c u s s i o n Even though more than h a l f the inmate pop u l a t i o n had p a r t i c i p a t e d i n some form of adult education, the d i s t r i b u t i o n of educational attainment l e v e l s i s s t i l l skewed to the lower end when compared to the general p o p u l a t i o n . As most p e n i t e n t i a r y educational programs are of an up-grading, or v o c a t i o n a l t r a i n i n g nature, o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r higher educ-a t i o n , at both the undergraduate and graduate u n i v e r s i t y l e v e l s , should be made a v a i l a b l e i f the inmates' p r o f i l e of educational attainment i s to more c l o s e l y p a r a l l e l that of the general p o p u l a t i o n . The researcher suspects that the upgrading, r e t r a i n i n g nature of most p e n i t e n t i a r y programs may be r e l a t e d to n o n - p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n adult education. Furthermore, i t i s not known whether the p a r t i c i p a t i o n of inmates i n p r i s o n educational programs r e f l e c t s genuine i n t e r e s t , or the e f f e c t s of r e h a b i l i t a t i o n and parole program requirements, or the lack of any other meaningful work i n the i n s t i t u t i o n s . Future research should be d i r e c t e d to determining the motivations of both the p a r t i c -i c i p a n t s and n o n - p a r t i c i p a n t s i n p e n i t e n t i a r y educational programs. Such 53 research would help a l l e v i a t e , or confirm,, the suspicion that the programs of i n t e r e s t to the inmates are not compatible with the programs offered by the i n s t i t u t i o n s . II INCIDENCE OF LEARNING DISABILITIES As i t was suggested by G r i f f i n (1978) that those who were i l l i t e r a t e would refuse to take academic tests i t was necessary, p r i o r to performing the incidence a n a l y s i s , to see i f the two groups, that i s , those who took both tests and those who refused or completed only one test d i f f e r e d . A t - t e s t was performed on the i n t e r v a l variables and a % analysis was per-formed on the nominal v a r i a b l e s to examine d i f f e r e n c e s . There were s i g n i f i c a n t differences between the two groups on three i n t e r v a l v a r i a b l e s , namely; age, previous commitments to a federal pen-i t e n t i a r y and the length of time served i n a f e d e r a l penitentiary as shown i n Table 9 on page 5 4. The two highest grade scores are also noted i n t h i s table as i t was expected that the refusers group (including those who completed only one t e s t ) might have completed s i g n i f i c a n t l y fewer grades. As age was one of the reasons given for refusing to write the tests i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g that the mean age of the refusers group was s i g n i f -i c a n t l y higher than the group taking both t e s t s . This age d i f f e r e n c e would also explain the greater number of federal commitments and the longer time served i n the f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r i e s . Furthermore, on the basis of comments made by the i n d i v i d u a l s refusing t e s t i n g , i t became obvious that those who had been through the federal system before had been 'tested to death', as t e s t i n g programs came and went. The researcher expected that there might be a d i f f e r e n c e in educational attainment as the refusers group had three i n d i v i d u a l s who had not attended school. Although the 54 TABLE 9 Refusers and Accepters: Mean Age, Federal Commitments, Length of Federal Time Served, Highest Grade, Highest Grade as an Adult Refusers n=50 Accepters n=192 X S.D. 1 n V X S.D. n V df t-value prob. Age 34.15 10.46 47 28.9 7.85 192 59.3 -3.2 p^.002 Federal Commit. 1.42 1.80 45 0.64 1.17 184 53.4 -2.8 p<.01 Federal Time ( y r ) 4.33 5.86 43 2.18 4.78 175 216 -2.5 p < 0 1 Highest Grade 8.31 2.93 48 9.04 1.95 192 57.8 1.6 n. s. Highest Adult Grade 9.35 3.37 48 10.13 2.20 192 57.4 1.5 n. s. 1. n represents V the number of cases ' with v a l i d observations highest grades claimed were lower f o r the group r e f u s i n g t e s t i n g , they were not s i g n i f i c a n t l y lower. A n a l y s i s of nominal v a r i a b l e s showed s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the two groups on the f o l l o w i n g : i n s t i t u t i o n i n which t e s t i n g took p l a c e , type of r e c e p t i o n , language of i n s t r u c t i o n i n the r e g u l a r school system, and m a r i t a l status (see Table 10, p.55). D i f f e r e n c e s i n the language of i n s t r u c t i o n were expected as the group r e f u s i n g t e s t i n g contained i n -d i v i d u a l s who were not p r o f i c i e n t i n E n g l i s h , having learned E n g l i s h as a second language. M a r i t a l status i s c l o s e l y t i e d to age and so the higher p r o p o r t i o n of married men i n the r e f u s e r s group i s not unusual. TABLE 10 Refusers and Accepters: Differences on Nominal Variables Refusers (n=50) Accepters (n=192) n Percent n Percent 1. Testing I n s t i t u t i o n Maximum 6 12.0 20 10.4 Medium 17 34.0 127 66.1 Medium-minimun 27 54.0 45 23.4 Total 50 100.0 192 100.0 yj- = 19.4, df=2, p -C.0001 2. Type of Reception Warrant of Committal 11 Transfer Within Region 31 Parole Revocation 6 Transfer Other Region -Transfer from Prov. -School Testing Other 1 22.0 93 48.4 62.0 44 22.9 12.0 19 9.9 5 2.6 5 2.6 21 10.9 Total 50 100 .0 192 100 .0 Jj1 =33.1, df-6, p <..0001 Language of Instruction English 35 72, .9 171 89, .1 French 7 14, .6 12 6, .3 Other 6 12. .5 9 4, .7 Total 48 100. ,0 192 100. .0 J.2 = 7.5, df=2, p <£-.02 Marital Status Single 16 32. .0 78 41. .5 Married 15 30. ,0 34 18. .1 Divorced/Separated 6 12. .0 30 15. .9 Common Law 11 22. ,0 46 24. .5 Widowed 2 4. ,0 -Total 50 100.0 188 100.0 "jfj = 11.7, df=4, p-C.02 56 The type of reception and the i n s t i t u t i o n i n which t e s t i n g took place are c l o s e l y i n t e r r e l a t e d v a r i a b l e s . As Table 10 in d i c a t e s , 62.0 percent of the i n d i v i d u a l s who refused t e s t i n g were t r a n s f e r r i n g from one penitentiary i n B.C. to another. Of these within region transfers 58.0 percent were t r a n s f e r r i n g from a higher s e c u r i t y i n s t i t u t i o n to a lower se c u r i t y i n s t i t u t i o n , usually from a med-ium to a medium-minimum. This i s r e f l e c t e d i n the high proportion of refusers who were interviewed i n a medium-minimum i n s t i t u t i o n . Indiv-iduals who had spent time i n a maximum, or medium i n s t i t u t i o n were not i n c l i n e d to accept t e s t i n g for two reasons. F i r s t , many of them had already been involved i n educational or t r a i n i n g programs of some kind. Second, most of t h i s group had undergone interviewing and some form of te s t i n g i n the f i r s t i n s t i t u t i o n to which they had been committed. From t h i s i t can be seen that the group who refused or did not com-plete t e s t i n g and the group who accepted t e s t i n g were s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f -ferent i n a number of ways. These d i f f e r e n c e s , however, were d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d to the reasons given by inmates for refusing to undergo t e s t i n g . Consequently, i l l i t e r a c y was not suspected as the prime motivation for r e f u s a l . Only the 192 i n d i v i d u a l s who completed both the WRAT and SCAT tests are considered i n the incidence a n a l y s i s . The operational d e f i n i t i o n of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s , as developed i n Chapter 2, required that: 1. the di f f e r e n c e score, A ^ -1/3, where A = (x ^ - x p/x^ and x^=achievement grade as given by the test r e s u l t s , X2 =highest grade completed, and x 2=expected achievement determined from x^x^ClQ/lOO) ; 2. i n d i v i d u a l s have sensory intactment, and 57 3. the language of i n s t r u c t i o n i n regular schooling was English. imposing the t h i r d requirement narrowed the sample to 169 cases. Imposing the second condition did not exclude any of these 169 cases as hearing loss or v i s u a l defects were not mentioned on any of the inmates' f i l e s . V a l i d test scores were a v a i l a b l e for a l l 169 inmates. Test Scores These 169 inmates had completed an average of 9.0 grades (S.D.=1.9) i n the regular school system and an average of 10.3 grades (S.D.=2.2) since leaving the regular school system. Table 11 i l l u s t r a t e s the d i s -t r i b u t i o n of the highest grade attained i n regular schooling and the highest grade attained as an adult. TABLE 11 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Highest Grade Attained Regular Schooling As an Adult Grade n Percent n Percent 4 1 0.6 1 0.6 5 2 1.2 - -6 12 7.1 7 4.1 7 17 10.1 11 6.5 8 40 23.7 20 11.8 9 26 15.4 17 10.1 10 39 23.1 40 23.7 11 13 7.7 9 5.3 12 16 9.5 41 24.3 13 - - 18 10.7 14 2 1.2 3 1.8 15 - - 1 0.6 16 1 0.6 1 0.6 Tot a l 169 100.0 169 100.0 58 The d i s t r i b u t i o n of subjects by achievement grade scores i s shown i n Table 12 on page 59 . The average achieved grade i s very close to the highest grade attained i n the regular school system on a l l but the WRAT reading and arithmetic subtests. As can be seen from an inspection of the achievement grade scores, the d i s t r i b u t i o n of in d i v i d u a l s across grade l e v e l s i s inconsistent. Due to the c e i l i n g of the SCAT, the l i m i t i n the norms tables i s grade 14, there i s a disproportionate number of in d i v i d u a l s achieving at the upper l i m i t of the t e s t . There i s , however, a f a i r l y even spread of i n d i v -iduals through the' other grade ranges of the SCAT subtests. The WRAT tes t , on the other hand, has a f a i r l y narrow range of grades, grades 9 to 12 for reading, grades 8 to 11 for s p e l l i n g and grades 6 to 9 for a r i t h -metic, which contains the bulk of the population. Per c e n t i l e s are more us e f u l than achievement grade scores for com-paring inmates to the general population. P e r c e n t i l e scores for the SCAT test were found for the highest grade completed by the inmate i n the reg-u l a r school system. In Table 13, on page 60, the per c e n t i l e scores have been converted to standard scores, so that the d i s t r i b u t i o n of achievement scores can be compared to the d i s t r i b u t i o n i n the general population. S i g -n i f i c a n c e t e s t i n g was done by hand using the Z-test f or equivalence of pro-portions (see Blalock, 1970, pp.149-152). The d i s t r i b u t i o n of pe r c e n t i l e scores for the inmates i s s i g n i f -i c a n t l y higher i n the lower end of achievement, when compared to the nor-mal d i s t r i b u t i o n , for a l l tests except the WRAT reading and SCAT verbal scores which show c l u s t e r i n g toward the higher end. Skewness scores show that the WRAT reading p e r c e n t i l e scores have the largest c l u s t e r i n g to the r i g h t when compared to the normal d i s t r i b u t i o n (see Table 14). Most of the p e r c e n t i l e d i s t r i b u t i o n s are f l a t t e r than the normal curve as i n -TABLE 12 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Subjects by Achievement Grades on WRAT and SCAT WRAT SCAT Reading S p e l l i n g A r i t h m e t i c Verbal Q u a n t i t a t i v e T o t a l Grade n Percent n Percent n Percent n Percent n Percent n Percent 2 1 0.6 3 6 3. 6 13 7. 7 10 5. 9 8 4.7 4 8 4. 7 17 10.10 11 6. 5 10 5. ,9 10 5.9 5 4 2. 4 15 8. ,9 15 8.9 7 4. 1 10 5, ,9 14 8.3 6 3 1. ,7 17 10. ,0 33 19.6 9 5. 3 17 10. .1 10 5.9 7 5 3. •P 14 8. ,3 35 20.7 15 8. 9 16 9. ,5 15 8.9 8 14 8. .3 24 14. .2 31 18.3 18 10. ,7 12 7, .1 15 8.9 9 17 10. .0 27 16. ,0 18 10.7 12 7. ,1 15 8. ,9 16 9.5 10 30 17. .8 27 16, .0 10 5.9 15 8. ,9 15 8, .9 15 8.9 11 46 27, .2 26 15, ,3 3 1.7 13 7, ,7 8 4 .7 11 6.5 12 32 18, .9 4 2, .4 2 1.2 18 10, .7 4 2 .4 12 7.1 13 14 8. .3 1 0 .6 2 1.2 15 8, .9 7 4 .1 14 8.3 14 4 2 .4 2 1.2 23 13, .6 45 26 .6 29 17.2 T o t a l 169 100 .0 169 100 .0 169 100.0 169 100 .0 169 100 .0 169 100.0 x=10 .4 x=8. 1, "x=7. • 1, x=9. • 2, x=9. .3 "x=9, .3, S.D.: =1 .9 S.D. =2.4 S.D. .=2.2 S.D. ,=3.5 S.D, .=3.7 S.D, .=3.5 TABLE 13 D i s t r i b u t i o n of P e r c e n t i l e Scores on WRAT and SCAT Normal D i s t r i b u t i o n Percent of Normal Po p u l a t i o n -3 S.D. . to -2 S.D. -2 S.D. to -1 S.D. -1 S.D. , to +1 S.D. +1 S.D. to +2 S.D. +2S.D. to +3 S.D. 2.28 13.59 68.26 13.59 2.28 Subtests n Percent n Percent n Percent n Percent n Percent WRAT Reading S p e l l i n g 2 5 1.2 3.0 6 37 ** 3.6 *** 21.9 85 108 ** 50.3 63.9 67 19 39. 11. ** 6 2 9 ** 5.3 A r i t h m e t i c - - 32 * 18.9 120 71.0 14 8. 3 3 1.8 SCAT Verbal 6 3.6 24 14.2 100 ** 59.2 35. 20. ** 7 4 2.4 Q u a n t i t a t i v e T o t a l 9 7 ** 5.3 4.1 23 26 13.6 15.4 105 101 * 62.1 *** 59.8 27 29 16. 17. 0 2 5 6 3.0 3.6 * = p < .05 ** = p < .005 *** = p <. .001 (one t a i l e d t e s t ) TABLE 14 Means, S.D.'s, Skewness and Kurtosis of Pe r c e n t i l e Scores Subtest Mean S.D. Skewness Kurtosis Reading 73.94 25.5 -1.29 " 0.77 S p e l l i n g 45.4 29.8 0.03 -1.43 Arithmetic 47.1 28.1 0.17 -1.17 Verbal 53.0 31.2 -0.22 -1.27 Quantitative 51.6 31.8 -0.13 -1.31 T o t a l 52.9 31.3 -0.24 -1.24 dicated by k u r t o s i s , except for the WRAT which i s narrower (see Table 14) The mean p e r c e n t i l e score for a l l subtests i s close to the mean of 50 ex-pected for the general population, except for the WRAT reading subtest which has a much higher mean. The WRAT reading test did not discriminate well i n the lower end of the achievement range. Only 12 i n d i v i d u a l s read below a grade 8 l e v e l on the WRAT, whereas 55 i n d i v i d u a l s read below a grade 8 according to the SCAT verbal r e s u l t s . In addition the p e r c e n t i l e scores for the WRAT reading test were skewed s i g n i f i c a n t l y to the r i g h t . This problem with the WRAT reading subtest may be due to the nature of the subtest which assigns a reading score s o l e l y on the a b i l i t y to read words o r a l l y As t h i s study i s concerned with the lower end of achievement, and the WRAT reading subtest did not discriminate well i n the lower end of the d i s t r i b u t i o n , on e i t h e r grade or pe r c e n t i l e scores, i t was not used i n the determination of differe n c e scores. The SCAT t o t a l score was also not used to determine difference scores as i t was a sum of the two SCAT subtest scores, and consequently did not contain more information than could be obtained from the two subtests i n d i v i d u a l l y . 62 Hypothesis Testing WRAT s p e l l i n g and arithmetic, and SCAT verbal and quantitative scores were used to t e s t hypotheses concerning the incidence and d i s t r i b u t i o n of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s . Hypothesis One Hypothesis one stated that the incidence of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s i n the inmate population would be s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher than the maximum rate of 16 percent c i t e d f o r the general population. To determine the incidence of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s , the highest grade completed i n the regular school system was used to designate the highest grade attained i n the d i f f e r e n c e expression. The highest grade completed as an adult was not used as i t was f e l t that t h i s might lead to an overestimation of the incidence. Overestimation was considered to be l i k e l y as most of the i n d i v i d u a l s who had improved t h e i r educational l e v e l as an adult, had done so i n upgrading programs. Although upgrading programs purport to upgrade academic s k i l l s , the focus of these programs i s the preparation of i n d i v i d u a l s for vocational t r a i n i n g . As such, i t was decided that f o r a measure of academic attainment the highest grade completed i n the regular school system would be used, as the regular school system more uniformly focuses on teaching academic s k i l l s . Determining expected achievement required the use of the i n d i v i d -ual's IQ score. Unfortunately IQ scores were av a i l a b l e for only 23 of the 169 inmates (mean IQ=97.7, S.D.=15.5). To determine which value of IQ should be used i n the expression for expected achievement, values of IQ at +1 S.D., 0 and -1 S.D. were tested. Difference scores were computed and a t - t e s t performed on the mean differ e n c e scores of the group whose IQ was known and the group for TABLE 15 Mean Di f f e r e n c e Scores for IQ Known Group and T r i a l IQ's Group IQ Known (23) IQ=85 (n=146) IQ=100 (n=146) IQ=115 (n=146) t t t t t t Di f f e r e n c e Score Mean S.D. Mean S.D. value prob. Mean S.D. value prob. Mean S.D. value prob. S p e l l i n g -0. 13 0. .197 -0. .01 0. ,27 -2, .04 .04 -0.09 0. ,27 -0.71 .48 -0. .16 0. .27 0.54 .59 A r i t h m e t i c -0. 17 0. .22 -0. ,11 0. ,25 -1. .02 .31 -0.19 0. .25 0.39 .69 -0. .27 0, .25 1.69 .09 Verbal -0. 03 0. .4 0. ,12 0. .37 -1. .79 .08 0.04 0. .37 -0.87 .40 -0. .03 0, .37 -0.02 .98 Q u a n t i t a t i v e -0. 08 0. ,25 0. ,13 0. ,39 -2. .40 .02 0.05 0. .39 -1.5 .14 -0. .02 0. .39 -0.67 .50 O N 64 which values of IQ were s u b s t i t u t e d i n t o the d i f f e r e n c e expression. There were s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s f o r the IQ known group and the others when the t r i a l value of IQ used was 85 (see Table 15). Although the t r i a l value of IQ=115 showed no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s , the t p r o b a b i l i t y f o r the d i f f e r e n c e score on a r i t h m e t i c was c l o s e r to being s i g n i f i c a n t than any of the d i f f e r e n c e scores f o r IQ=100 (Table 15). I t was decided to use the value of IQ=100 as the mean d i f f e r e n c e scores d i d not vary s i g n i f i c a n t l y from the IQ known group, and as the a r b i t r a r y use of an IQ could not be j u s t i f i e d . Consequently the d i f -ference expression no longer contained the concept of expected achieve-ment. The incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s determined i n t h i s way would, then, represent a maximum value as i t was based s t r i c t l y on the d i f f e r e n c e between highest grade a t t a i n e d and t e s t derived achievement l e v e l s , or ^ =(,-x.^-x^)/K^. Incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , using the c r i t e r i a that A—-1/3, f o r the v a r i o u s subtests i s shown i n Table 16. TABLE 16 Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s D i f f e r e n c e Score ( ^ -.33) n Percent S p e l l i n g 36 21.3 Verbal 35 20.7 A r i t h m e t i c 51 30.2 Q u a n t i t a t i v e 35 20.7 Average 32 18.9 Performing a hand check of the i n d i v i d u a l s designated l e a r n i n g d i s -abled on the basis of a d i f f e r e n c e score below the c u t o f f score on a s p e c i f i c subtest, showed that there e x i s t e d i n d i v i d u a l s whose score on 65 one subtest would be p a r t i c u l a r l y low, while the other three scores were not. This was e s p e c i a l l y true of the WRAT a r i t h m e t i c t e s t which presented anomalous r e s u l t s . Consequently, an average of the four d i f f e r e n c e scores was taken so that those i n d i v i d u a l s who scored c o n s i s t e n t l y below t h e i r highest a t t a i n e d grade would be picked out. This lowered the number of i n d i v i d u a l s considered l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d as i n d i c a t e d i n Table 16. P r i o r to t e s t i n g hypothesis one, i t was necessary to ensure that the 32 l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l s were not so designated simply on the ba s i s of undereducation. Although the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group a t t a i n e d a mean highest grade (8.63, S.D.=1.7) which was lower than the mean highest grade (9.14, S.D.=1.9) a t t a i n e d by the normal l e a r n e r s , i t was not s i g n i f i c a n t l y lower (t=-1.38, df=167, p=0.169). The average of the four d i f f e r e n c e scores gives a maximum incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n t h i s inmate pop u l a t i o n of 18.9 percent (32 i n -d i v i d u a l s ) . To compare t h i s to the general population r a t e of 16 percent, the t e s t of proportions o u t l i n e d by B l a l o c k (1970, pp.149-152) was used as f o l l o w s : P u= p r o b a b i l i t y of being l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n the general p o p u l a t i o n = .16 q^= p r o b a b i l i t y of not being l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n the general population = .84 p g= p r o b a b i l i t y of being l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n t h i s sample=.189 N= number of cases i n the sample=169. Then, Z= (p -p )/(p q /N) 2 = 1.028 and p£.08 (one t a i l e d t e s t ) , s u u u On the ba s i s of t h i s , hypothesis one was r e j e c t e d . There i s no s i g -n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e between the inmate population and the general popul-a t i o n w i t h respect to the maximum incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . Hypothesis Two Hypothesis two contended that the d i s t r i b u t i o n of d i f f e r e n c e scores 66 for the inmate population would be s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from that of the general population. The d i s t r i b u t i o n for the general population, as given by Yule et a l . (1974), indicated a generally normal d i s t r i b u t i o n with a s i g n i f i c a n t departure from normality at the lower end. Table 17 shows the means, S.D.'s, skewness and kurtosi s values for the f i v e d i f f e r e n c e scores. TABLE 17 Means, S.D.'s, Skewness and Kurtosis of Five Difference Scores Difference Score Mean S.D. Skewness Kurtosis S p e l l i n g -.09 .26 0.28 -0.192 Verbal .03 .38 0.24 -0.03 Arithmetic -.19 .24 1.67 6.47 Quantitative .03 .39 0.595 0.762 Average -.06 .27 0.54 0.55 The d i s t r i b u t i o n s of the d i f f e r e n c e scores are shown i n Figures 3 to. 7. Both subtests of the WRAT give f a i r l y continuous looking histograms, where-as the SCAT subtests show di s c r e t e peaks. This i s due to the dif f e r e n c e i n the nature of the achievement grade scores given by the te s t s . WRAT grade equivalents were given to one decimal place, while SCAT grade equiv-alents took integer values. The average of the dif f e r e n c e scores (Figure 7) smoothed out the d i s t r i b u t i o n s , except for one peak at -0.35 to -0.40. Table 17 in d i c a t e s , as does inspection of the histograms, that the d i s t r i b u t i o n of the dif f e r e n c e scores i s to the l e f t of the general pop-u l a t i o n mean of 0.00, where a score of 0.00 indicates no dif f e r e n c e be-tween the highest grade attained and achievement. A l l the d i s t r i b u t i o n s FIGURE 3 D i s t r ibut ion of Difference Scores: Spel l ing -.40 -.30 -.20 -.10 .00 +.10 Difference Score .20 +.30 +.40 +.50 K60 FIGURE 4 D i s t r ibut ion of Difference Scores: Verbal 7^35 -?40 -.30 -.20 -.10 .00 +.10 +.20 +.30 +.40 +.50 +.'60 Difference Score 68 Df cases 24 22 20 . 18 16 -14 _ 12 -10 • 8 . 6 4 2 FIGURE 5 D i s t r ibut ion of Difference Scores: Arithmetic *^?55 TiO -.'20 -7l0 .00 +.10 +.20 +.30 +.40 +.50 +.60 Difference Score of cases 2^ . 22 • 20 18 . 16 14 12 _| 10 8 -6 -4 ^ 5 FIGURE 6 D i s t r ibut ion of Difference Scores: Quantitative 40 -.30 -.20 -.10 .00 +.10 +.20 +.30 +.40 +.50 +.60 Difference Score 69 of cases 24 22 20 18 16 i4 4 12 10 6 4 4 2 <-.55 FIGURE 7 Di s t r ibut ion of the Average Difference Scores 1 ' »— 40 -.30 EJZL -.10 .00 +.10 Difference Score + .20 +.30 +.40 +.50 +.60 are g e n e r a l l y normal with scores c l u s t e r i n g s l i g h t l y to the l e f t of the mean, w i t h the exception of the WRAT a r i t h m e t i c which shows extreme skew-ness to the l e f t . None of the histograms i s d i s t i n c t l y bimodal or t r i -modal on the ba s i s of v i s u a l i n s p e c t i o n . A l l of these d i s t r i b u t i o n s i n d i c a t e a high degree of underachievement, that i s , a large p r o p o r t i o n of i n d i v i d u a l s are achieving below the highest grade completed. Not a l l of these i n d i v i d u a l s are l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d , how-ever, as some underachivement i s expected on the ba s i s of a normal d i s -t r i b u t i o n . Yule et a l . (1974) suggested that only those i n d i v i d u a l s who are at the extreme end of the d i s t r i b u t i o n , that i s , s c o r i n g below two standard d e v i a t i o n s from the mean, are l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . They found that the d i s t r i b u t i o n of achievement was g e n e r a l l y normal and that "... severe degrees of s p e c i f i c reading r e t a r d a t i o n occur at a r a t e above that pre-70 d i e t e d on a s t a t i s t i c a l b a s i s , suggesting a 'hump' at the lower end" (1974, p.195). The d i s t r i b u t i o n of inmate d i f f e r e n c e scores i s not comparable to the d i s t r i b u t i o n given by Yule et a l . (^974), as there i s no method f o r transforming the inmates' scores to those of the general p o p u l a t i o n . S t a n d a r d i z i n g the inmates' d i f f e r e n c e scores, as suggested by E r i c k s o n (1975^, i s not an appropriate procedure as these standard scores would r e s u l t i n comparisons w i t h i n t h i s inmate group ra t h e r than a comparison w i t h the general p o p u l a t i o n . In order to determine the number of i n d i v i d u a l s i n the extreme end of the d i s t r i b u t i o n a m o d i f i c a t i o n to the c r i t e r i a f o r l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s was made. In a d d i t i o n to the c o n d i t i o n that the average d i f f e r e n c e score must be l e s s than, or equal t o , -1/3, a second c o n d i t i o n was imposed based on the p e r c e n t i l e scores of the standardized t e s t s . To ensure that only those who were at the extreme end of the d i s t r i b u t i o n were designated l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d , the second c o n d i t i o n required that the i n d i v i d u a l score below -2 S.D. on one of the subtests. Imposing both requirements, that an i n d i v i d u a l o b t a i n an average d i f -ference score — -0.33 and score below -2 S.D.'s on one of the p e r c e n t i l e scores f o r any one of the su b t e s t s , gave an incidence of 7.69 percent (13 i n d i v i d u a l s ) . I t i s important to note that not a l l i n d i v i d u a l s s c o r i n g 2 S.D.'s below the mean on a p e r c e n t i l e score had an average d i f f e r e n c e score ^ - 0 . 3 3 . Although there were very few i n d i v i d u a l s s c o r i n g i n the extremes of the p e r c e n t i l e scores,, the f i r s t c o n d i t i o n picked 4 out of 5 i n d i v i d u a l s s c o r i n g below 2 S.D.'s on the s p e l l i n g subtest, 4 out of 6 sco r i n g below 2 S.D.'s on the v e r b a l subtest, and a l l the i n d i v i d u a l s s c o r i n g below 2 S.D.'s on the q u a n t i t a t i v e (n=8) and reading (n=2) sub-t e s t s . 71 This incidence f i g u r e of 7.69 percent (n=13) w i l l be taken as the lower bound f o r the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n t h i s inmate p o p u l a t i o n . This f i g u r e i s then comparable to the incidence f i g u r e s of 4 to 6 percent c i t e d by Yule et a l . (1974), where these f i g u r e s represent the p r o p o r t i o n of i n d i v i d u a l s i n the extreme of the general population d i s t r i b u t i o n of achievement. Using the 6 percent r a t e and the t e s t of p r o p o r t i o n s , i t was determined that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n the inmate population d i d not d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y from that found i n the general p o p u l a t i o n (Z=0.9251, p=.18, one t a i l e d t e s t ) . Conse-quently, the second hypothesis was r e j e c t e d . Learning Disabled Inmates A hand check of the 32 i n d i v i d u a l s designated as l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d by the average of the d i f f e r e n c e scores i n d i c a t e d that t h i s was an overes-timate, and d i d indeed represent the maximum value of incidence. The same hand search of the 13 i n d i v i d u a l s picked out using two c o n d i t i o n s i n d i c a t e d that these i n d i v i d u a l s e x h i b i t e d l e a r n i n g problems, even though they were of average, or s l i g h t l y below average i n t e l l i g e n c e . Although one could s a f e l y say that these 13 inmates had l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , the l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s were not severe. S p e l l i n g i s commonly used to i l l u s t r a t e the s e v e r i t y of a l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y , and diagnosis on the b a s i s of s p e l l i n g patterns has been sug-gested by Boder (1973). Frauenheim i n a follow-up study of l e a r n i n g d i s -abled i n d i v i d u a l s found that "... s p e l l i n g remained the most serious im-pairment" (1978, p.482) and that the word r e v e r s a l s and l e t t e r i n v e r s i o n s of childhood p e r s i s t e d i n t o adulthood. In the present study there were no examples of the c l a s s i c d y s l e x i c syndromes such as l e t t e r r e v e r s a l s or other obvious problems i n sequencing or i n the spacing of l e t t e r s . 72 In a d d i t i o n , l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l s o f t e n m i s p e l l unknown words i n a b i z a r r e f a s h i o n . Attempts at s p e l l i n g unknown words lack appropriate phonetic components (Frauenheim, 1978). Normal readers w i l l make good phonetic guesses to unknown words as shown i n the study by Whiting and J a r r i c o who found that the "... normal reader tends to make s p e l l i n g e r r o r s that are readable, good phonetic equivalents of the d i c -tated word" (1980, p.47). Almost a l l of the inmates made good phonetic guesses when s p e l l i n g unknown words. The 13 i n d i v i d u a l s who were designated l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d a l s o attempted to s p e l l p h o n e t i c a l l y , but t h e i r attempts were more un-u s u a l . Examples of the attempts of these 13 i n d i v i d u a l s are as f o l l o w s : D i c t a t e d Word Responses t r a i n t r i n e , t r i a n c o r r e c t kreck, creak c i r c l e s r c o l , c i r c i l , c i r u l e , c i r c i l e , c r c o l educate agukeat, endcation r u i n rown, r u i n n , roun, ruen. As these attempts are not b i z a r r e , the l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s of these 13 i n d i v i d u a l s are f e l t not to be severe. Rather, i t i s f e l t that these i n -d i v i d u a l s e x h i b i t more m i l d l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s than that manifested by a c l a s s i c d y s l e x i c . As incidence.estimates may be confounded by age, ethnic o r i g i n , and geographic area of school attendance i t was imperative that d i f f e r e n c e s on these three v a r i a b l e s be examined. In t h i s a n a l y s i s the 32 i n d i v i d u a l s who obtained an average d i f f e r e n c e score — -0.33 were designated l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d as t h i s would give more s t a t i s t i c a l l y meaningful comparisons i n terms of the s i z e of the s i z e of t h i s group. A t - t e s t on the means of the ages of the two groups showed that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates, w i t h an average age of 25.8 years (S.D.=7.2, 73 n v=32), were s i g n i f i c a n t l y younger than the r e s t of the inmate population who were an average of 29.2 years o l d (S.D.=7.7, n v=137, t=-2.26, df=167, p=.012). In a d d i t i o n i t was found that age c o r r e l a t e d p o s i t i v e l y w i t h the average d i f f e r e n c e score (r=0.17, p=.015, n v=169). The r e s u l t s of the ")C^ a n a l y s i s f o r the two nominal v a r i a b l e s are shown i n Table 18. There were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group and the r e s t of the inmate sample f o r area of school attendance or ethnic o r i g i n . D i s c u s s i o n The incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s was not found to be s i g n i f -i c a n t l y greater i n the inmate population when compared to the general pop-u l a t i o n . This was true f o r the comparison between the maximum value of incidence obtained f o r inmates by the average of the d i f f e r e n c e scores and the maximum value i n the general p o p u l a t i o n ; and the comparison be-tween the minimum value of incidence f o r the inmates obtained by more s t r i n g e n t c r i t e r i a and the minimum value i n the general population c i t e d by Yule et a l . (1974). As a r e s u l t , both hypotheses one and two were r e j e c t e d . Further, i t was found that there were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s be-tween the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal l e a r n i n g inmate groups on ethnic o r i g i n and geographic area of school attendance. However, the two groups d i d d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y on age. The s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e between the two groups on age i s d i f f i c u l t to understand f o r two reasons. F i r s t l y , one would have expected that any d i f f e r e n c e s o c c u r r i n g i n the two groups would have been i n the opposite d i r e c t i o n . I t was f e l t that age may be a confounding v a r i a b l e as the younger i n d i v i d u a l would have had the most recent experience with schooling 74 TABLE 18 Learning Disabled and Normal Learners: Geographic Area of School Attendance and Ethnic O r i g i n Learning (n= Disabled 32) Normal Learners =137) n Percent n Percent Geographic Area of School Attendance Newfoundland - - 3 2.2 Nova S c o t i a 2 6.3 1 0.7 New Brunswick - - 1 0.7 Ontario 5 15.6 21 15.3 Manitoba 1 3.1 4 2.9 Sakatchewan 1 3.1 6 4.4 A l b e r t a 5 15.6 11 8.0 B r i t i s h Columbia 17 53.1 79 57.7 Yukon 1 3.1 5 3.6 U.S.A. - - 6 4.4 T o t a l 32 100.0 137 100.0 % 2=3.63, df=7, p=0.8 (Note Newfoundland, Nova represented one category S c o t i a , aiu^New Brunswicl i n the *X a n a l y s i s . ) E t h n i c O r i g i n Canadian 22 68.8 86 62.8 French 1 3.1 3 2.2 Other European - - 26 19.0 North American Indian 8 25.0 18 13.1 Other ( a s i a t i c , ( A s i a t i c , East Indian) 1 3.1 4 2.9 T o t a l 32 % 1 = 8 . 6 9 5 df=4, p=.069 100.0 137 100.0 75 and would have an advantage over the older inmate i n academic t e s t i n g s i t -u a t i o n s . That- :this was not the case e l i m i n a t e s the fear that p r a c t i c e i n t e s t - t a k i n g would give the younger inmates higher scores. Secondly, one would have expected l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s to be e q u a l l y present i n a l l age groups as i s suggested by follow-up s t u d i e s . Subjects of these follow-up s t u d i e s , however, have g e n e r a l l y been between 18 and 30 years of age. (Frauenheim, 1978; He r j a n i c and Penick, 1972). I t may be, as suggested by some t h e o r i s t s , that l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s are a developmental phen-omena which disappears w i t h age. Further research on the patterns and i n -cidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n a l l age groups would help : c l a r i f y t h i s problem. One f u r t h e r comment must be made wi t h regard to ethnic o r i g i n as i t has been suggested that Native Indians do poorer on t e s t s of E n g l i s h v e r b a l achievement p r i m a r i l y because they use a non-standard E n g l i s d i a -l e c t (Barth, 1979). The Native Indians i n t h i s study d i d not d i f f e r s i g -n i f i c a n t l y from any other e t h n i c o r i g i n group as shown by both a one way a n a l y s i s of v a r i a n c e , u s i n g the average d i f f e r e n c e score as the dependent v a r i a b l e and ethnic o r i g i n as the independent var i a b l e . ( F = l . 9 0 6 , p=.112), and a Scheffe t e s t which determined that no two groups d i f f e r e d s i g n i f -i c a n t l y at the p=.05 l e v e l . I l l LEARNING DISABILITIES AND ITS CORRELATES This s e c t i o n d e a l t w i t h the t e s t i n g of hypotheses r e l a t i n g l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s to socio-economic and c r i m i n a l v a r i a b l e s . In t h i s a n a l y s i s those i n d i v i d u a l s who had an average d i f f e r e n c e score ^ - 0 . 3 3 were des-ignated l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and the remaining 137 inmates were designated normal l e a r n e r s . 76 Hypothesis One Hypothesis one stated that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates would have parents who were of a s i g n i f i c a n t l y lower socio-economic c l a s s than the parents of the normal l e a r n i n g inmates. Socio-economic status was coded using the B l i s h e n and McRoberts (1976) s c a l e to give both a socio-economic index and rank. In t h i s scale i n c r e a s i n g values of index correspond to a higher socio-economic s t a t u s , and i n c r e a s i n g values of rank correspond to a lower socio-economic s t a t u s . As mentioned e a r l i e r , there were many cases where data on the inmate's f a m i l y was missing. Consequently the r e s u l t s of the t e s t i n g of t h i s hyp-o t h e s i s are tenuous. A t - t e s t f o r socio-economic index and a Mann Whitney U t e s t f o r socio-economic rank revealed no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s be-tween the two groups (Table 19). Hypothesis one was r e j e c t e d . TABLE 19 Socio-economic Status of the F a m i l i e s of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners Learning Disabled (n=32) Normal Learners (n=137) Mean S.D. n V Mean S.D. n V df t t value prob Socio-economic Index 34.3 11.7 8 40.8 13.9 60 66 -1.26 p=.10 H Ranks n V £ Ranks n U V Z prob. Socio-economic Rank 43.94 8 33.24 60 164. 5 • -1.44 p=.075 77 Hypothesis Two Hypothesis two stat e d that l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates would have s i g -n i f i c a n t l y poorer employment h i s t o r i e s than the r e s t of the inmate pop-u l a t i o n i n terms of lower socio-economic s t a t u s , a greater number of job changes, and a shorter length of time spent i n any one job. The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates had occupations that were s i g n i f i c a n t l y lower i n terms of socio-economic index and rank than the normal l e a r n i n g p o p u l a t i o n (Table .20). T-tests f o r s i g n i f i c a n c e were performed f o r the number of job changes and the longest p e r i o d employed i n any one job. I t was found that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates d i f f e r e d s i g n i f i c a n t l y from the normal learners (Table 20). TABLE 20 Learning Disabled and Normal Learners: Mean Socio-econmic Status, Number of Jobs, and Length of Job Learning Disabled Normal Learners (n=32) (n=137) Mean S.D. n V Mean S.D. n V df t value prob. Socio-econ. Index 28.3 3.68 31 30.9 8.3 131 109.2 -2.66 p=.005 Number of Jobs 2.4 1.98 25 2.6 1.5 118 29.8 -0.38 p=.035 Length of Longest Job (months) 14.4 17.0 18 28.5 30.1 86 42.8 -2.74 p=.005 1. one t a i l e d t e s t £ Ranks n V £ Ranks n V U Z prob. Socio-econ. Rank 94.32 31 78.47 131 1633.0 -1.73 p=.04 78 Although s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s e x i s t e d , the d i r e c t i o n of the d i f f e r e n c e f o r the number of job changes i s opposite that proposed i n the hypothesis. I t was found that the normal learners had changed jobs more f r e q u e n t l y ; the d i f f e r e n c e between the two groups was not t h e r e f o r e , ex-p l i c a b l e i n terms of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . As the normal l e a r n e r s were o l d e r than the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates, i t was suspected that t h i s would e x p l a i n the d i f f e r e n c e i n the number of job changes and the d u r a t i o n of employment. A n a l y s i s of covariance was performed to t e s t t h i s , using the length of the longest held job as the dependent v a r i a b l e , the presence or absence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s as the f a c t o r , and age and the number of job changes as the c o v a r i a t e s . Only age was s i g n i f i c a n t l y a s s ociated w i t h the length of time spent i n the longest h e l d job (F=84.589, d f = l , p=.0001). The l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s f a c t o r explained only about 3.6 percent of the variance i n the longest held job, whereas, when both the c o v a r i a t e s and the f a c t o r were considered, 46.5 percent of the variance was explained. In a d d i t i o n , socio-economic index was a l s o f e l t to be d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d to age. A Pearson c o r r e l a t i o n of age w i t h socio-economic status confirmed t h i s (r=.27, p=.0001, n =162). The d i f f e r e n c e s between the two groups i n socio-economic status and the length of the longest h e l d job, though s i g n i f i c a n t , are confounded by age. The d i f f e r e n c e between the two groups i n the number of job changes was i n a d i r e c t i o n opposite that p r e d i c t e d . On the b a s i s of these r e s u l t s , hypothesis two was r e j e c t e d . Hypotheses Three and Four Hypothesis three claimed that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates would have committed crimes that were s i g n i f i c a n t l y more aggressive than the nor-79 mal l e a r n i n g inmates and hypothesis four claimed that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d would commit more impulsive crimes. Based on the d e f i n i t i o n given i n Chapter 3, offences were grouped i n -to f i v e ranks going from the most to l e a s t aggressive as f o l l o w s : Rank Offences 1 Murder, Attempted Murder, Manslaughter, Wounding, As s a u l t 2 Rape, Other Sexual Offences 3 Robberies, Breaking and E n t e r i n g , Theft 4 N a r c o t i c C o n t r o l Act Offences 5 P r i s o n Breach/ Parole V i o l a t i o n s . A Mann Whitney U t e s t of both the major offence, the offence r e s u l t i n g i n the present i n c a r c e r a t i o n , and the l i f e t i m e major offence showed s i g -n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the two groups (Table 21). The l e a r n i n g d i s -abled committed s i g n i f i c a n t l y more aggressive crimes than the normal l e a r n e r s , as shown by the lower sum of ranks of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group. TABLE 21 Mann Whitney U Test of Aggressiveness of Offences of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners Learning Disabled (n=32) Normal Learners (n=137) y Ranks n V r Ranks n V U z prob.^ Major Offence 65.5 32 89.6 137 1568.5 -2.7 p=.003 L i f e t i m e Major Offence 61.0 31 88.7 135 1395.5 -3.2 p=.0008 1. one t a i l e d t e s t The d i s t r i b u t i o n of the two groups and a ^jC^ t e s t f o r d i f f e r e n c e s i n 80 the d i s t r i b u t i o n by offence category f o r both the major offence and the l i f e t i m e major offence i s shown i n Table 22. TABLE 22 D i s t r i b u t i o n of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners by Offence Category Learning Disabled Normal Learners (n=32) (n=137) . Major Offence L i f e t i m e Major Major Offence L i f e t i m e Major Offence Offence n Percent n Percent n Percent n Percent Rank 1 8 25. 0 8 25.8 20 14 .6 20 14.6 Rank 2 5 15. 6 6 19.4 10 7 .3 10 7.4 Rank 3 17 53. 1 16 51.6 69 50 .4 71 52.6 Rank 4 0 0. 0 0 0.0 31 22 .6 33 24.4 Rank 5 2 6. 3 n. a. n. a. 7 5 .1 n.a. n.a. T o t a l 32 100. 0 31 100.0 137 100 .0 136 100.0 Major O f f e n c e : % 2 = l l . l , df=4, p=.03 L i f e t i m e Major O f f e n c e : ^ =13.2, df=3, p=.01 As can be seen from Table 22, about 40 percent of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d have committed aggressive crimes, such as murder or rape, compared to about 22 percent of the normal l e a r n e r s f o r both the major offence and the l i f e -time major offence. The only other s t r i k i n g d i f f e r e n c e between the two groups i s the non-existence of N a r c o t i c C o n t r o l Act (Rank 4) offences i n the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group. In the normal l e a r n e r s , N a r c o t i c C o n t r o l Act offences accounted f o r o n e - f i f t h of a l l the offences committed by t h i s group. 81 To t e s t f o r d i f f e r e n c e s i n the impulsiveness of the offences between the two groups, offences were dichotomized i n t o impulsive and non-im-p u l s i v e c a t e g o r i e s f o l l o w i n g the d e f i n i t i o n given i n Chapter 3. Im-p u l s i v e offences included robberies (not armed r o b b e r i e s ) , breaking and e n t e r i n g , t h e f t , possession of s t o l e n property and p r i s o n and parole v i o l -a t i o n s . k%>^ a n a l y s i s i n d i c a t e d no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal learners groups f o r the d i s t r i b u t i o n of the major offence (X = .23, d f = l , p=.31) and the l i f e t i m e major offence 96 2=.02, d f = l , p=.87). On the b a s i s of these r e s u l t s , the hypothesized r e l a t i o n s h i p between aggressiveness of the offence and l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s was accepted, and the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the impulsiveness of the offence and l e a r n i n g d i s -a b i l i t i e s was r e j e c t e d . Hypothesis F i v e Hypothesis f i v e proposed that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group would have been convicted of offences s i g n i f i c a n t l y more oft e n than the normal l e a r n e r s . The means of the two groups were tested f o r s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s on the f o l l o w i n g : previous number of f e d e r a l commitments, previous number of p r o v i n c i a l commitments, and the length of time served both i n the fed-e r a l and p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . This t e s t i n g revealed no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the two groups as shown i n Table 23 on page 82. On the b a s i s of these r e s u l t s hypothesis f i v e was r e j e c t e d . D i s c u s s i o n I t was found that there were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n the s o c i o -economic status of the f a m i l i e s of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal l e a r n e r s . F a m i l i e s of both groups were low i n socio-economic s t a t u s , a r e s u l t o f t e n noted i n c r i m i n a l research. 82 TABLE 23 Means of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners on Number of Commitments and Length of Time Served Learning Disabled Normal Learners (n=32) (n=137) Mean S. ,D. n V Mean S. .D. n V df va! tue K 1 prob. Previous Fed. Commitments 0, .58 0. .85 31 0.58 1. .1 132 161 -0. .01 p=.99 Previous Prov. Commitments 2. .1 1. .8 29 2.2 2, .4 119 146 -0, .23 p=.82 Length of Time Served Fed.(yr) 1, .7 2, .9 28 2.0 4, .8 127 64.2 -0. .40 p=.69 Length of Time Served Prov. (yr) 1, .3 1, .2 27 1.4 1, .8 114 52.2 -0. .47 p=.64 1. one t a i l e d t e s t Hypothesis two was r e j e c t e d as age confounded the r e l a t i o n s h i p be-tween poor employment h i s t o r i e s and l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . . I t was o r i g -i n a l l y suspected that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group would have more d i f -f i c u l t y f i n d i n g and keeping a job. I t was found, i n s t e a d , that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group had poorer employment h i s t o r i e s because they were younger and had not been i n the labour force as long as the normal l e a r n e r s . Even though the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group was younger, the num-ber of jobs they had held was very c l o s e to.the number of jobs held by the normal l e a r n e r s , that i s , the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d had held 2.4 compared to 2.56 jobs. This suggests that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate i s , i n f a c t , prone to i n s t a b i l i t y i n employment. The hypothesized r e l a t i o n s h i p between the aggressiveness of an offence and l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s was accepted. The r e l a t i o n s h i p between the im-83 pulsiveness of an offence and l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s was r e j e c t e d . The r e s u l t w i t h respect to i m p u l s i v i t y , however, i s not c o n c l u s i v e f o r two reasons. F i r s t l y , the l a b e l l i n g of an offence as impulsive i n t h i s study was a r b i t r a r y as p o l i c e r e p o r t s . o f the offence were not st u d i e d . Thus, i t may be that the aggressive crimes were committed i m p u l s i v e l y as a r e a c t i o n to f r u s t r a t i o n or other s t r e s s f u l s i t u a t i o n . Impulsiveness may not, then, be separable from the aggressiveness of the offence. Secondly, l e s s serious crimes, such as s h o p l i f t i n g or j o y r i d i n g , which would be con-sid e r e d impulsive would not l e a d , n e c e s s a r i l y , to a f e d e r a l p e n i t e n t i a r y term. Such crimes would be d e a l t w i t h by the p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . Future research on the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s would help i n the c l a r i f i c a t i o n of t h i s problem, and would a l s o allow f o r a com-pa r i s o n between the inmates of f e d e r a l and p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . The f i n a l hypothesis that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate would have been convicted of offences s i g n i f i c a n t l y more oft e n than the normal l e a r n i n g inmate was r e j e c t e d . Although the r e s u l t s d i d not d i r e c t l y sup-port the hypothesis, the f i n d i n g that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates d i d not d i f f e r from the normal le a r n e r s on the number of commitments or the length of time served i s s u r p r i s i n g as the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group i s much younger than the normal l e a r n e r s . A t e s t of s i g n i f i c a n c e on the means of the ages of the f i r s t a dult c o n v i c t i o n showed that the two groups d i f f e r e d s i g n i f i c a n t l y ( t=-4.05, df=134.65, p=.0001) The l e a r n i n g d i s -abled group was f i r s t convicted as an adult at an average age of 17.6 years (S.D.-1.5, n v=27). The normal le a r n e r s were convicted at an average age of 20.0 years (S.D.=5.5, n v=112). As the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group has been convicted the same number of times and served the same sentences as the o l d e r , normal l e a r n i n g group, the o r i g i n a l hypothesis i s i n d i r e c t l y confirmed. 84 OTHER FINDINGS As t h i s study attempted to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between two groups d i s c r i m -inant analysis was performed rather than c o r r e l a t i o n a l or regression an-a l y s i s . To determine which v a r i a b l e s should be used i n t h i s analysis a % ^ analysis of a l l nominal variables and t - t e s t s of s i g n i f i c a n c e for a l l i n t e r v a l variables were performed to see i f the learning disabled and normal learners d i f f e r e d on v a r i a b l e s other than those hypothesized. Analysis of nominal v a r i a b l e s indicated s i g n i f i c a n t differences be-tween the two groups only on the c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y (dichotomized into the presence or absence of criminal h i s t o r y ) of the family ('X' =6.18, df=l, p=.02). Over h a l f the learning disabled inmates had at least one member of t h e i r immediate fa m i l i e s who had c r i m i n a l h i s t o r i e s compared to only about 30 percent of the normal learners (Table 24). TABLE 24 Differences i n Family Criminal History of Learning Disabled and Normal Learners Learning (n= Disabled 32) Normal (n= Learners 137) Family Criminal n Percent n Percent History Father 2 8.7 1 1.0 Brother(s) 8 34.8 23 23.2 S i s t e r ( s ) - - 1 1.0 Combination of the Above 3 13.0 4 4.0 None 10 43.5 70 70.7 Total 23 100.0 99 100.0 85 For the i n t e r v a l v a r i a b l e s , s i g n i f i c a n t differences were revealed for the highest grade completed as an adult, the number of s i b l i n g s and the number of c h i l d r e n (Table 25). TABLE 25 Means of Other S i g n i f i c a n t Interval Variables for Learning Disabled and Normal Learners Learning Disabled Normal Learners (n=32) (n=137) Mean S. ,D. n v Mean S. D. n V df value prob. Highest Grade As an Adult 9.22 1 .98 32 10.5 2, .1 137 167 -3.12 p=.002 Number of S i b l i n g s 6.1 3 .6 27 3.9 3 .0 106 131 3.28 p=.001 Number of Children 0.3 0 .64 23 0.84 1 .3 116 66.9 -2.94 p=.004 As the highest grade completed as an adult was s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t for the two groups, a Kj 2 analysis of p a r t i c i p a t i o n and non-participation i n adult education was performed. There were no s i g n i f i c a n t d ifferences between the groups, although a higher proportion of learning disabled i n -mates had not p a r t i c i p a t e d an any adult education programs when compared to the normal learners (Table 26). TABLE 26 P a r t i c i p a t i o n i n Adult Education by Learning Disabled and Normal Learners Learning Disabled Normal Learners P a r t i c i p a t i o n n Percent n Percent P a r t i c i p a t e d 15 46.9 88 64.2 No P a r t i c i p a t i o n 17 53.1 49 35.8 T o t a l 32 100.0 137 100.0 7^ 2=3.28, df=l, p=.07 86 V a r i a b l e s which were thought to have p o t e n t i a l f o r d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g between the two groups and the r e s u l t s of t h i s chapter led to the use of the f o l l o w i n g v a r i a b l e s i n the d i s c r i m i n a n t a n a l y s i s : age, number of sen-tences ( t o t a l charges r e s u l t i n g i n the present i n c a r c e r a t i o n ) , length of t o t a l sentence, age at f i r s t a dult c o n v i c t i o n , number of s i b l i n g s , highest grade completed as an a d u l t , major offence and l i f e t i m e major offence (dichotomized i n t o aggressive and non-aggresive o f f e n c e s ) , a d u l t education p a r t i c i p a t i o n (dichotomized i n t o p a r t i c i p a t i o n and n o n - p a r t i c i a p t i o n ) , and e t h n i c o r i g i n (dichotomized i n t o white and non-white). Other pot-e n t i a l independent v a r i a b l e s were not used i n the a n a l y s i s because of missing values. Only 120 cases had non-missing values on these eleven., v a r i a b l e s , 24 (75 percent) from the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group and 96 (70 percent) from the normal l e a r n i n g group. Of these eleven v a r i a b l e s only f i v e s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i s c r i m i n a t e d the two groups (Table 27). TABLE 27 V a r i a b l e s D i s c r i m i n a t i n g the Learning Disabled and Normal Learners V a r i a b l e Step Entered Standardized Canonical D i s c r i m i n a n t C o e f f i c i e n t Highest Grade As an Adult 1 -0.42 Number of S i b l i n g s 2 0.43 Number of Sentences 3 0.47 L i f e t i m e Major Offence 4 -0.38 Age at F i r s t C o n v i c t i o n 5 -0.28 Canonical Correlation=0.44, Eigenvalue= 0.24 Care must be taken i n i n t e r p r e t i n g the d i s c r i m i n a n t f u n c t i o n c o e f f -87 i c i e n t s . The lower, or more negative, the score the more l i k e l y an i n d i -v i d u a l w i l l be a normal l e a r n e r ; the hig h e r , or more p o s i t i v e , the score the more l i k e l y an i n d i v i d u a l w i l l be l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . The d i s c r i m i n a n t f u n c t i o n , evaluated at the group c e n t r o i d , f o r the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group was 0.98, and f o r the normal le a r n e r s i t was -0.24. The d i s c r i m i n a n t fun-c t i o n i d e n t i f i e d 69 percent of the t o t a l sample (n=169) c o r r e c t l y as being e i t h e r l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d or normal l e a r n i n g . These f i v e v a r i a b l e s ex-pl a i n e d about 22 percent of the variance between the two groups. D i s c u s s i o n The d i f f e r e n c e s between the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal le a r n e r s on fa m i l y c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y i s unexpected, although i t i s compatible with one of the o r i g i n a l hypotheses concerning the socio-economic status of the fa m i l y of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate. This f i n d i n g c o n f l i c t s w i t h the Rutter et a l . (1975) study which showed that a higher incidence of fa m i l y c r i m i n a l i t y , e s p e c i a l l y deviance i n the f a t h e r , c o r r e l a t e d w i t h p s y c h i a t r i c d i s o r d e r i n c h i l d r e n . . These authors noted, however, that f a m i l y deviance had not been studied i n r e l a t i o n to i t s a s s o c i a t i o n w i t h l e a r n i n g d i s -a b i l i t i e s . Future research should be d i r e c t e d to c l a r i f y i n g t h i s problem. The f i n d i n g that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates had more s i b l i n g s than the normal le a r n e r s supported s i m i l a r research f i n d i n g s by Rutter et a l . (1975). Rutter et a l . (1975) contended that large f a m i l y s i z e may r e s u l t i n adverse home co n d i t i o n s which, i n t u r n , may be c a u s a l l y r e l a t e d to language impairment. However, much more research i n the e t i o l o g y of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s needs to be done i f t h i s conjecture i s to be v a l -idated . S i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the two groups on the number of c h i l -dren each has, i s f e l t to be a spurious r e s u l t as the number of c h i l d r e n i s s i g n i f i c a n t l y p o s i t i v e l y c o r r e l a t e d to age (r=.39, p=.0001). I t i s , 88 t h e r e f o r e , apparent that age had more of an impact on having c h i l d r e n , than d i d the absence or presence of a l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y . A n a l y s i s of d i f f e r e n c e s i n a d u l t education p a r t i c i p a t i o n by the two groups were almost at a s i g n i f i c a n t l e v e l . More than 50 percent of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l s had not p a r t i c i p a t e d i n any adult education programs compared to only 36 percent of the normal l e a r n e r s . This was r e -f l e c t e d i n the s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the two groups on the highest grade completed as an a d u l t . The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l s are not l i k e l y to v o l u n t a r i l y p a r t i c i p a t e i n educational programs i n l i g h t of t h e i r past h i s t o r y of l e a r n i n g f a i l u r e . D i s c r i m i n a n t a n a l y s i s picked out four of the v a r i a b l e s found to be s i g n i f i c a n t by other methods, namely; highest grade completed as an a d u l t , number of s i b l i n g s , aggressiveness of the l i f e t i m e major offence, and age at the f i r s t a d u l t c o n v i c t i o n . The only v a r i a b l e found to d i s c r i m i n a t e the two groups which was not found s i g n i f i c a n t p r e v i o u s l y was the number of sentences, that i s , charges on which the inmate was convicted. The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group rece i v e d an average of 5.1 charges (S.D.=8.7, n v=32). Although g r e a t e r , t h i s was not s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from the average 3.1 charges (S.D.=2.8, n v=135) received by the normal learners (t=1.24, df=32.6, p=0.22). As the t o t a l number of cases having non-missing values on a l l the v a r i a b l e s i n the d i s r i m i n a n t a n a l y s i s was 120, d i f f e r e n c e s may have increased s i g n i f i c a n t l y between the two groups. I t i s not c l e a r why the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate would have more charges l a i d against him. One p o s s i b l e explanation may r e l a t e to the p e r s o n a l i t y c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l . As men-tioned i n Chapter 2, the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l i s o v e r - r e a c t i v e , high strung and e a s i l y f r u s t r a t e d . These t r a i t s i n d i c a t e a lack of c o n t r o l so that when a l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l begins to commit an offence 89 he cannot stop, thus, i n c r e a s i n g the number of charges l a i d against him. Future research should determine more completely the p s y c h o l o g i c a l pro-f i l e of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate. This would help c l a r i f y the r e -l a t i o n s h i p between the number of sentences and l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . 90 CHAPTER 5 SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE SUMMARY This study sought to c l a r i f y problems associated w i t h c o n f l i c t i n g r e p o r t s concerning the educational c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of p e n i t e n t i a r y i n -mates. Various studies have revealed high r a t e s of i l l i t e r a c y ; others have suggested high r a t e s of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . T h e o r e t i c a l studies have attempted to e x p l a i n the r e l a t i o n s h i p between c r i m i n a l and s o c i a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of inmates and e i t h e r i l l i t e r a c y or l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . In response to these problems, t h i s study measured the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , as defined by a d i f f e r e n c e score between t e s t -measured achievement grades and the highest grade a t t a i n e d i n the re g u l a r school system. I n d i v i d u a l s s c o r i n g below the c u t o f f score were considered l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . These l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates were then compared to the normal l e a r n i n g p o p u l a t i o n to see i f the two groups d i f f e r e d s i g n i f -i c a n t l y on socio-economic and c r i m i n a l v a r i a b l e s . P o p u l a t i o n Two hundred and f o r t y two inmates i n c a r c e r a t e d i n the f e d e r a l pen-i t e n t i a r i e s i n B r i t i s h Columbia were interviewed and took academic t e s t i n g as part of the r e g u l a r i n d u c t i o n process i n s i x i n s t i t u t i o n s ; two maximum s e c u r i t y , two medium s e c u r i t y , and two medium-minimum s e c u r i t y . Inmates involved i n the i n d u c t i o n process included i n d i v i d u a l s who were t r a n s -f e r r i n g between f e d e r a l i n s t i t u t i o n s i n B.C., t r a n s f e r r i n g between f e d e r a l r e g i o n s , parole or mandatory s u p e r v i s i o n v i o l a t o r s , t r a n s f e r r i n g from a p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n , or ent e r i n g on a warrant of committal. 91 I C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the Sample Of the 242 inmates in t e r v i e w e d , 192 completed both academic t e s t s , 19 completed one t e s t , and 31 refused to take any t e s t s . Data was gathered from the inmates' f i l e s and from the educational i n t e r v i e w f o r a l l 242 inmates. Due to v a r i a b l e p r a c t i c e s i n i n s t i t u t i o n a l record keeping, com-p l e t e sets of data f o r each inmate were not always a v a i l a b l e . These 242 inmates were on the average 30 years o l d , and were i n the second lowest socio-economic c l a s s . About 40 percent of the population was s i n g l e , w h i le the remainder was married or had once been married. The offences r e s u l t i n g i n the present i n c a r c e r a t i o n ranged from Nar-c o t i c C o n t r o l Act offences, to robberies and t h e f t s , to a s s a u l t s and mur-ders. Inmates were s e r v i n g on the average a s i x year term f o r the present commitment. The sample had completed an average of 9 grades i n the re g u l a r school system, and had increased t h i s to an average of 10 grades as an a d u l t . About h a l f the sample had p a r t i c i p a t e d i n adult education programs. I I Incidence of Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s Of the 192 i n d i v i d u a l s who had w r i t t e n both t e s t s , 23 were excluded from the a n a l y s i s of the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s as E n g l i s h was not the language of i n s t r u c t i o n i n the schools they had attended. Two f i g u r e s f o r incidence were determined, a maximum and a minimum e s t -imate and three v a r i a b l e s which may have confounded the incidence r e s u l t s were t e s t e d . Hypotheses One and Two— Hypothesis one st a t e d that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n an inmate po p u l a t i o n would be higher than the maximum r a t e of 16 percent 92 c i t e d f o r the general p o p u l a t i o n . As IQ was not a v a i l a b l e f o r a l l of the 169 i n d i v i d u a l s who met the c r i t e r i a f o r a n a l y s i s , d i f f e r e n c e scores be-tween t e s t measured achievement and the highest grade a t t a i n e d i n the reg-u l a r school system gave the maximum incidence f i g u r e of 18.9 percent. This was found to not d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y from the maximum incidence i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . Thus, hypothesis one was r e j e c t e d . The second hypothesis d e a l t w i t h the d i s t r i b u t i o n of underachievement. This r e q u i r e d the i m p o s i t i o n of a second c o n d i t i o n to define l e a r n i n g d i s -a b i l i t i e s so that a comparison w i t h the Yule et a l . (1974) d i s t r i b u t i o n could be made. This more s t r i n g e n t c r i t e r i a r e q u i r e d both that the i n -d i v i d u a l score below the c u t o f f of the average d i f f e r e n c e score and score below two S.D.'s from the mean of the p e r c e n t i l e score on one of the sub-t e s t s . This gave a lower l i m i t of the incidence at 7.69 percent which was not s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from the Yule et a l . (1974) f i g u r e of 6 percent. Hypothesis two was r e j e c t e d . Further i t was found that the incidence estimates were not confounded by e t h n i c o r i g i n or geographic area of school attendance. However, age was found to be s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t f o r the two groups with the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate being on the average younger than the normal l e a r n i n g inmate. I l l Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s and I t s C o r r e l a t e s The group designated l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d by the average d i f f e r e n c e score method (n=32) were compared to the normal l e a r n e r s (n=137) to t e s t f o r d i f f e r e n c e s expected i n the socio-economic status of the inmate's f a m i l y , the socio-economic status of the inmate, the nature of the inmate's offence and the c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y of the inmate. 93 Hypotheses One and Two Hypothesis one claimed that the socio-economic status of the f a m i l i e s of the learning disabled group would be lower than the f a m i l i e s of the nor-mal learners. Hypothesis two claimed that the learning disabled group would have had occupations of a lower socio-economic status, changed jobs more often and spent less time i n the longest held job than the normal learners. As there were no s i g n i f i c a n t differences i n the socio-economic status of the f a m i l i e s of the two groups, and age confounded the second hypothesis, both hypotheses were rejected. Hypotheses Three and Four Hypothesis three stated that the learning disabled group would have committed more aggressive crimes than the normal learners; hypothesis four stated that t h e i r crimes would be more impulsive. Learning disabled inmates committed offences that were s i g n i f i c a n t l y more aggressive than the offences of the normal learners. The r e s u l t s for the impulsiveness showed no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s . Hypothesis three was accepted and hypothesis four was rejected. Hypothesis Five Hypothesis f i v e stated that the learning disabled inmates would have been convicted of offences s i g n i f i c a n t l y more often than the normal learners. Although t h i s hypothesis was rejected as there were no s i g n i f -icant d i f f e r e n c e s between the two groups on the number of previous fed-e r a l or p r o v i n c i a l commitments, or the length of sentences served i n fed-e r a l or p r o v i n c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s age confounded these r e s u l t s . Age was con-founding as the s i g n i f i c a n t l y younger learning disabled inmates had con-v i c t i o n records s i m i l a r to those of the older normal learning inmates. 94 Other Findings I t was found that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l s had t h e i r f i r s t a d u l t c o n v i c t i o n at a s i g n i f i c a n t l y younger age than the normal l e a r n e r s . D i s c r i m i n a n t a n a l y s i s i n d i c a t e d that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group had been convicted of more charges than the normal l e a r n e r s . The l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group came from l a r g e r f a m i l i e s than the normal l e a r n i n g group. In ad d i -t i o n , a higher p r o p o r t i o n of the f a m i l i e s of the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group had members w i t h a c r i m i n a l h i s t o r y . I t was a l s o found that the normal l e a r n e r s a t t a i n e d s i g n i f i c a n t y higher grades as an adul t when compared to the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d group. L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study There are two major l i m i t a t i o n s i n t h i s study as f o l l o w s : 1. The measurement of the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i s d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d to the performance expected on the b a s i s of IQ. As there were so many cases where data on IQ was mis s i n g , i t had to be dropped as a v a r i a b l e . However, great care was taken to ensure that the r e s u l t s would be v a l i d by measuring the maximum incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s -a b i l i t i e s . 2 . The i m p u l s i v i t y of the offences could not be pro p e r l y assessed as p o l i c e r e ports were not studied . This l e d to i n c o n c l u s i v e r e s u l t s with respect to t h i s v a r i a b l e and i t s a b i l i t y to d i f f e r e n t i a t e be-tween the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d and normal l e a r n e r s . CONCLUSIONS The r e s u l t s of t h i s study i n d i c a t e d that the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n an inmate pop u l a t i o n i s no d i f f e r e n t from the incidence present i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . These r e s u l t s g e n e r a l l y c o n t r a d i c t previous research concerning the incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n 95 inmate po p u l a t i o n s . Although, on the whole, inmates have a t t a i n e d educ-a t i o n a l l e v e l s which are lower than the general p o p u l a t i o n and a s i z e a b l e p r o p o r t i o n of the inmates are underachievers, the inference that inmates were l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d was not supported. I t i s f e l t that t h i s under-achievement may be due to sporadic school attendance, m o t i v a t i o n a l or other f a c t o r s and not to l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . Consequently, the causal r e l a t i o n s h i p between l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s and adult c r i m i n a l i t y cannot be a p p l i e d to most of the a d u l t inmate p o p u l a t i o n . For those inmates who were found to have l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s the existence of a causal r e l a t i o n s h i p has more v a l i d i t y . V a l i d i t y i s d i r e c t l y suggested by the c o n f i r m a t i o n of the hypothesized aggressiveness of the offences committed by the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d . I n d i r e c t l y , a causal l i n k i s i n d i c a t e d by two other f i n d i n g s . F i r s t , the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate was convicted as an adult at a younger age than the normal l e a r n i n g inmate suggesting a past h i s t o r y of delinquent and a n t i - s o c i a l behaviour. This supports the causal l i n k o u t l i n e d by the l i t e r a t u r e reviewed i n Chapter 1. Secondly, the f i n d i n g that the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate had more charges l a i d against him than the normal l e a r n i n g inmate i s compatible with the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n d i v i d u a l ' s lack of c o n t r o l and o v e r - r e a c t i v e character. These r e s u l t s imply that the c a u s a l r e l a t i o n s h i p between l e a r n i n g d i s a -b i l i t i e s and subsequent c r i m i n a l behaviour e x i s t s , however, f u r t h e r r e -search i s needed to s u b s t a n t i a t e t h i s i m p l i c a t i o n . SIGNIFICANCE This study has c o n t r i b u t e d i n the f o l l o w i n g ways: 1. I t has d i s p e l l e d the b e l i e f that there are p r o p o r t i o n a t e l y more i n d i v -i d u a l s who are l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d i n the p e n i t e n t i a r i e s than i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . Causal t h e o r i e s l i n k i n g adult c r i m i n a l i t y to l e a r n i n g d i s -96 a b i l i t i e s are f u r t h e r weakened. 2. The f i n d i n g that a small p r o p o r t i o n of inmates were l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d obviates c o r r e c t i o n s education programmers from making a major s h i f t t o -wards the p r o v i s i o n of s p e c i a l education programs. With respect to the educational background of inmates i n general, t h i s study found that even though more than h a l f the inmate pop u l a t i o n had p a r t i c i p a t e d i n adult ed-u c a t i o n programs, the d i s t r i b u t i o n of the educational l e v e l s was skewed to the lower end when compared to the general p o p u l a t i o n . Results of Chapter 4 showed that inmates p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n adult education increased t h e i r l e v e l s of educational attainment so that about seventy percent of the p o p u l a t i o n had a t t a i n e d between grades ten and twelve, w i t h f o r t y per-cent a t t a i n i n g a grade twelve. However, only about f i v e percent of the inmates had increased t h e i r e d ucational l e v e l s past a grade twelve com-pared to about f o r t y percent i n the general p o p u l a t i o n . To reshape t h i s d i s t r i b u t i o n the focus of c o r r e c t i o n s education must s h i f t from v o c a t i o n a l t r a i n i n g and upgrading to a more comprehensive o f f e r i n g of programs which includes higher education. Although p r a c t i c a l problems e x i s t w i t h the implementation of u n i v e r s i t y l e v e l , and other career t r a i n i n g programs i n so many small i n s t i t u t i o n s , c o r r e c t i o n s ed-ucators i n B.C. have begun, w i t h i n the l a s t year, to o f f e r a wider v a r -i e t y of e d u c a t i o n a l options. This has been done by i n t r o d u c i n g the programs o f f e r e d by the Open Learning I n s t i t u t e of B.C. i n t o the pen-i t e n t i a r i e s to complement the long e s t a b l i s h e d r e s i d e n t i a l u n i v e r s i t y programs o f f e r e d by the U n i v e r s i t y of V i c t o r i a . Further development of both r e s i d e n t i a l and d i s t a n c e education programs i s recommended since the use of these f a c i l i t i e s would enable inmates to a t t a i n an e d u c a t i o n a l p r o f i l e more c l o s e l y resembling that of the general p o p u l a t i o n . F u r t h e r , increased a v a i l a b i l i t y of u n i v e r s i t y programs may have a d d i t i o n a l ben-97 e f i t s , as i t has been r e c e n t l y demonstrated by P a r l e t t (1980) that sus-tained p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n u n i v e r s i t y programs i s h i g h l y c o r r e l a t e d w i t h lowered r e c i d i v i s m r a t e s . 3; Even though l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmates made up a r e l a t i v e l y small pro-p o r t i o n of the t o t a l inmate p o p u l a t i o n , s p e c i a l a t t e n t i o n must be paid to these inmates as they were found to have committed more aggressive crimes than the normal l e a r n e r s . The poor v e r b a l and communication s k i l l s of these inmates suggest that r e h a b i l i t a t i o n programs should focus on the development of these s k i l l s . Adult educators must work to develop pro-grams, i n concert w i t h other p e n i t e n t i a r y s t a f f , which would lead to im-proved chances of r e h a b i l i t a t i o n f o r t h i s group. Areas f o r Future Research The f i n d i n g s of t h i s study suggest that future research should take place i n three areas, namely; research on the a d u l t education p a r t i c i p -a t i o n patterns of inmates, research on l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n a d u l t s , and research on the l e a r n i n g d i s a b l e d inmate. Adult educators must more a c t i v e l y p a r t i c i p a t e i n the planning of e d u c a t i o n a l programs i n c o r r e c t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . N o n - p a r t i c i p a t i o n by h a l f the inmate pop u l a t i o n i n d i c a t e s that research on the motivations f o r p a r t i c i p a t i o n , e v a l u a t i o n of the educational programs p r e s e n t l y o f f e r e d by the i n s t i t u t i o n s and development of programs which meet the needs of inmates are e s s e n t i a l . As age proved to be s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t between the l e a r n i n g d i s -abled and normal l e a r n e r s , questions were r a i s e d as to the nature and i n -cidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n a d u l t s . Research d i r e c t e d at studying the patterns and incidence of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s i n adults would be i n -v a l u a b l e i n improving the o v e r a l l understanding of l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s . 98 In a d d i t i o n , approaches to i n s t r u c t i n g the learning disabled adult must be researched i f we are to better understand the prognosis for these i n d i v -i d u a l s , e s p e c i a l l y as i t r e l a t e s to the learning disabled inmate. Research on the learning disabled c r i m i n a l should be pursued so that e f f e c t i v e r e h a b i l i t a t i o n programs can be set up. Psychological studies should be performed j o i n t l y with educational studies to develop a complete p r o f i l e of t h i s inmate. The lack of psychological analysis i n t h i s study i s a weakness as a complete understanding of the learning disabled inmate i s not p o s s i b l e . Research, s p e c i f i c a l l y , should be directed to determine i f the 'Group C h a r l i e ' i n d i v i d u a l s i n the c l a s s i f i c a t i o n schema of Megargee and Bohn ( 1979) and the learning disabled group of inmates i n t h i s study are i d -e n t i c a l . Megargee and Bohn's 'Group C h a r l i e ' bears a s t r i k i n g resemblance to the learning disabled inmates of t h i s study. Members of 'Group C h a r l i e ' accounted for between 6 to 8 percent of the penitentiary population, had the highest proportion of crimes against persons, were one of the youngest groups, had the most extensive p r i o r c r i m i n a l record, were one of the most v i o l e n t groups, had minimal controls, and were lowest on academic achieve-ment (Megargee and Bohn, 1979). The psychological c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of t h i s group were summed up as follows: "Warped by t h e i r paranoid a t t i t u d e , they mistrust and misinterpret the actions and f e e l i n g s of others, and, i n r e -sponse to these misperceptions, they often act out i n inappropriate and o c c a s i o n a l l y v i o l e n t ways " (Megargee and Bohn, 1979, pp. 227-228). I f the two groups are, i n f a c t , i d e n t i c a l t h i s would have treatment implications n e c e s s i t a t i n g both educational and psychological components. F i n a l l y , great care must be taken when generalizing the r e s u l t s of t h i s study to other prison populations, e s p e c i a l l y inmates of p r o v i n v i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . 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