Developmental Theory Vs. Critical Criminology Writing Sample

Several theories, such as critical criminology and developmental theory, help forensic psychologists comprehend the potential motives behind criminal behavior. According to the developmental hypothesis, criminal behavior is produced by social, biological, and psychological processes. Forensic psychologists can therefore examine the criminal’s life experiences leading up to the crime rather than just the crime itself. The Henry Earl case is related to developmental theory. According to Schram and Tibbetts (2017), critical criminology focuses on hierarchies, power imbalances, and inequalities, typically in places of poverty. The Columbine Shooting is one case connected to critical criminology.

Developmental Theory

Definition of Developmental Theory: “perspectives on criminal behavior that highlight the development of criminality across time, with the individual as the unity of study” (Schram & Tibbetts, 2017). This concept has several uses, but let us only talk about the Henry Earl case for clarity. Over 6,000 days of the past decade have been spent behind bars for Lexington, Kentucky’s 71-year-old homeless Henry Earl Earl. He has been apprehended repeatedly; the number is well over a thousand. Henry Earl has been arrested numerous times for public intoxication and criminal trespassing twice, according to McLaughlin (2013).

Because of the early criminal influences in his life, his story perfectly illustrates the concept of developmental psychology. With the death of his adoptive mother, Earl began drinking as a teenager, and theorists assume that he will continue to do so into adulthood. Some theorists would argue that he will have a costly police record because his drinking habits carried over into adulthood, and he was arrested for public intoxication.

Finally, Travis Hirschi’s broad notion of low self-control as a leading cause of his crimes is cited by theorists as relevant to the case of Henry Earls. According to Hirschi, children need to be socialized and taught to manage their impulses by the time they turn ten years old. However, the child’s lack of self-control after age ten will be permanent (Schram & Tibbetts, 2017).

Critical Criminology

Lynch (2010) contends that a political-economic and class study of hierarchies, power differentials, and inequalities is the foundation of critical criminology in a low-income urban milieu. Two high school students, Eric Harris, and Dylan Kleboid, allegedly plotted the shooting. Two tormented high school students decided to exact their vengeance by attacking their school. Schram and Tibbetts (2017) note that these adolescents were called the weird kids that no one wants to be friends with, especially if they are being bullied for not fitting in, making this a critical criminology case. The kids’ preexisting stigma of being “different” gave them the confidence to plot a shooting attack against their perceived social outcasts.

Theorists would use this case to illustrate critical criminology by analyzing the institutional context of the crime, the perpetrators’ motives, and the students’ social stratification. Hong, Cho, Allen-Meares, and Espelage (2011) stated that attitudes and actions were influenced on multiple fronts. The parents had adequate proof to take action for their sons’ inactions, but the article states that they ignored their responsibility. Therefore, the adolescents went ahead with the crime nonetheless.

Finally, the writings of Charles Horton Cooley, William Thomas, George Herbert Mead, and Erving Goffman, symbolic interactionism, are used by researchers to explain the Columbine shooting. According to proponents of symbolic interactionism, “many social interactions entail symbolism,” defined as “the process by which individuals perceive the meaning of each other’s words and gestures and behave accordingly” (Schram & Tibbets, 2017, p. 293). Harris and Kleboid were targets of bullying and hostility from other students at their high school. Harris and Kleboid’s contact with the bullies catalyzed their decision to plot a school shooting.


Researchers, theorists, and forensic psychologists can benefit from the unique insights of developmental theory and critical criminology. Researchers can learn more about the possible influences of a person’s upbringing and social milieu on their offending conduct by employing developmental theory. However, the sociological, economic, and political settings in which criminal behavior originates are the main emphasis of critical criminology. Forensic psychologists can use these two schools of thinking to provide more effective strategies for reducing criminal activity and better understanding the dynamics at work in criminal behavior. Scholars and practitioners may collaborate to make communities safer and promote constructive social change by merging their viewpoints. 


Hong, J. S., Cho, H., Allen-Meares, P., & Espelage, D. L. (2011). The social ecology of the Columbine High School Shootings. Children and youth services review33(6), 861-868.

Lynch, M. J. (2010). Critical criminology. Criminology.

McLaughlin, E. C. (2013, December 4). Most-arrested man to face judge as friends hope for ‘christmas miracle’. CNN.

Schram, P. J., & Tibbetts, S. G. (2019). Introduction to criminology: Why do they do it?. Sage Publications.

Diversity And Social Justice Essay Example

Diversity encompasses a wide range of identities, such s gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, language, culture, religion, country of origin, and political perspectives. On the other hand, social justice is built on the belief that everyone deserves equal social, political, and economic rights, opportunity, and access. Social justice calls for fairness, equity, respect for diversity, and eradicating oppression. Diversity and social justice are significant concepts in ensuring that people from different backgrounds are treated equally and given equal opportunities in various aspects of life. One of the current diversity and social justice concerns is the wage gap, a significant concern in many countries. The wage gap is the difference in earnings between two groups of individuals, often categorized based on race, gender, or ethnicity. The contexts will present the wage gap as a global diversity and social justice issue.

Wages Gap as a Diversity and Social Justice Concern

As a Gender Concern

According to the United Nations news, women are highly concentrated in lower-paid and low-skilled work. The International Labor Organization (2022) also stated that on an average monthly income, women are paid about 20 cents less than men. Figure 1 below illustrates the mean gender pay gap in monthly earnings in some high-income countries, according to the International Labor Organization. In addition, women are under-presented in decision-making roles in the workplace as they occupy junior positions, with men occupying the most senior position. Based on the natural role of women, they are also most likely to carry out at least 2.5 times more unpaid labor than men (United Nations, 2022). The report also indicated that the Covid 19 pandemic significantly affected women in terms of income security and representation (United Nations, 2022). The pandemic significantly impacted women’s employment, threatening to reverse decades of progress toward ensuring gender equality. However, as countries recover from the Covid19 crisis, they are taking action to address gender equality setbacks, which are relevant and vital to ensure inclusivity, resilience, and sustainable recovery.

Figure 1:

Mean gender pay gaps on monthly earnings of selected countries in high-income groups (International Labor Organization, 2022)

Mean gender pay gaps on monthly earnings of selected countries in high-income groups

Wages Gap across Race and Ethnicities

Racial minorities have been experiencing a lot of oppression and discrimination since the colonial period. Despite the effort to ensure equality in the U.S., a substantial discriminatory earning gap still exists among various populations (Desmond & Emirbayer, 2019). Studies have shown that Black women and men still earn less than their White counterparts. PayScale survey that analyzed data from a sample of 1.8 million White men and men of color employees from January 2017-February 2019 (Miller, 2022). Indicated that African American men are likelier to make less despite climbing the corporate ladder than white men. On average, a Black man earns 87 cents for every dollar a White man earns. Hispanic workers also earn 91 cents for every dollar a White man earns. However, Asian men typically earn $1.15 for every dollar earned by the white male worker (Miller, 2022)

However, women of color are disproportionately affected by the wage gap. As discussed earlier, women are paid less than their male counterparts, but women of color are paid even less. For instance, African American women are paid 64%, and Hispanic women are paid 57% of what non-Hispanic men are paid (Glynn & Boesch, 2022). African and Hispanic women have the largest wage gap compared to other women as compared to White non-Hispanic men.

In 2020, The U.S. Census collaborated with the Women’s Bureau to analyze the gender pay gap. The data showed that the wage gap between men and women could not be explained through measurable differences such as education, age, work hours, or industry (Glynn & Boesch, 2022). The data indicated a greater likelihood that these differences result from discrimination. Through industry and occupational segregation, some gender, racial, or ethnic groups are over-presented in certain jobs and under-presented in others.


The wage gap can be addressed through affirmative action and policies that promote diversity and social justice by ensuring that individuals from different backgrounds are given equal opportunities in the workplace. Affirmative actions are based on equal opportunities, a significant concept in diversity and social justice (Desmond & Emirbayer, 2019). Equal opportunity means everyone should be given fair chances regardless of age, gender, race, or ethnicity (Desmond & Emirbayer, 2019). Another way to address the wage gap is through education and training to help reduce discrimination and occupational segregation by providing individuals from different backgrounds with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in different jobs. Education and training can help reduce discrimination by creating awareness and understanding of diversity and social justice issues. Through educating people about the importance of diversity and social justice, they become aware of the impacts of discrimination and take steps to address it.


The wage gap is a diversity and social justice issue that affects people of different backgrounds, especially women of color. Women are paid less than their male counterparts, and people of color are paid less than their white counterparts. Wages gap is attributed to factors such as discrimination and occupational segregation. However, this issue can be addressed by implementing policies promoting workplace diversity and social justice. Another solution is through education and training to create awareness of diversity and social justice issues. Through education, people can understand the impacts of discrimination and take necessary steps to minimize them.


Desmond, M., & Emirbayer, M. (2019). Race in America (p. 576). WW Norton, Incorporated.

Glynn, S. J., & Boesch, D. (2022, March 15). Connecting the dots: “Women’s work” and the wage gap. U.S. Department of Labor Blog.

International Labor Organization. (2022). Understanding the gender pay gap. International Labour Organization.—ed_dialogue/—act_emp/documents/publication/wcms_735949.pdf

Miller, S. (2020, August 7). Black workers still earn less than their white counterparts. SHRM.

United Nation. (2022, September 21). Closing gender pay gaps is more important than ever. U.N. News.

Education Analysis: The Case Of George H. Oliver Elementary School Writing Sample


George H. Oliver Elementary School faces various challenges that require policies strategies. I developed four solutions that are paramount in solving numerous challenges in the institution. Parental engagement programs are the most effective solution to be prioritized in the school. One of the most important reasons is that parental engagement programs help to improve communication between parents and teachers. For instance, since the school is situated in the Brickyard neighbourhood with many cases of violence and crime, it will be important for parents and teachers to put a measure that prevents their children from being recruited to deviance groups and cults. When parents and teachers can communicate effectively, it helps ensure that everyone is on the same page regarding the student’s education (Leenders et al., 2019). Parents should be engaged to solve the challenges of high turnover of teachers and the school’s principal. However, this part of the assignment will analyze each solution based on pros, cons and barriers to enlighten the school administration on the expected budget, personnel and expertise in implementing any of the solutions.

Overview of the four solutions

The first solution to increase academic performance in GHO is increasing access to technology for low-income students. The school has a website that can facilitate online learning, particularly during the pandemic. The second solution is the implementation of Trauma-Informed Care Training for Teachers to support students with traumatic experiences in the village and at home. Thirdly, introducing a parental involvement program ensures that parents engage in critical decision-making (Cutuli, Alderfer & Marsac, 2019). Lastly is implementing School-Based Health Centers to support students who need help to huge out-of-pocket expenses from facilities outside the GHO.

Pros and cons of solutions

Increasing access to technology for low-income students can help close the achievement gap, but it is important to consider the potential drawbacks, such as financial challenges. Implementing trauma-informed care training for teachers can help create a more supportive and effective learning environment for all students, but it’s also important to consider how this might impact a teacher’s performance (Christian-Brandt, Santacrose & Barnett, 2020). Introducing a parental involvement program could help improve communication and collaboration between parents and educators. However, it is also important to consider how this might affect a parent’s ability to work or care for their family.

Possible Solution One: Increase Access to Technology for Low-income students

GHO will benefit a lot from implementing new technologies. Technology has many benefits, including increased motivation among students as they use it to learn more things, including taking notes and creating assignments on their own when they are at home. This will also help them to understand what they are learning better. Teachers from GHO will also be able to monitor their student’s progress easily through this technology, improve their teaching skills, and impart knowledge more effectively. Most low-income students need help to afford laptops to use at home.


Accessing technology in school can be beneficial for low-income students. Its main advantage is that it helps students connect with teachers and parents. It also allows them to get information about classes, homework and other important topics needed for learning. The second advantage is that it will allow them to learn faster, improve their performance and also help them with their grades. One of the reasons this is so important is that low-income families are struggling financially, so they cannot afford the money and time needed to get a computer or tablet.


However, there are some cons to this approach as well: First, there is a high level of cost involved in purchasing computers or tablets for every student at GHO. Second, some students might need help organizing themselves enough with these devices. Since most of the students from the school are from low-income families, they might need more basic skills to implement the technology. It means the school have computer teachers to provide basic conceconceptsre the technology is fully implemented (Morgan, 2022).

Possible Solution Two: Implementation of Trauma-Informed Care Training for Teachers

Teachers at the GHO are responsible for ensuring students are not suffering advanced psychological conditions from the trauma they experience from society and back home. First, the school has a bad reputation due to poor performance and high turnover of teachers and the principal. Teachers need to understand the students since they might be suffering psychologically. Additionally, students from low-income families experience trauma due to parents’ breakups due to financial challenges.


Implementing trauma-informed care training for teachers in low-income student schools will enable them to be aware of the needs of their students and provide support to them (Liang et al., 2020). This will also help them identify the signs of trauma and how to respond appropriately.

Secondly, the implementation will enable them to provide better education to their students by teaching them how to cope with stress, anxiety and fear.


The main disadvantage of the program is the challenges of finances to train teachers. Based on the challenges facing George H. Oliver Elementary School, that could be no resources to facilitate the program. The second disadvantage is the high turnover of teachers where the GHO might train teachers every and then accommodate new teachers that replace the ones that transfer to other schools.

Possible Solution Three: Introduce a Parental Involvement Program

Parental involvement is a great way to encourage learning in school. Parents’ involvement is vital in encouraging students and participating in the school’s infrastructure development. GHO require parents’ contributions to prevent high turnover of teachers and principals and management of resources. Parental involvement program is important because it allows parents to interact with their children individually (Schmid & Garrels, 2021). It also allows them to see where their child may be struggling or excelling.


The first advantage of introducing a parental involvement program is that it can help improve students’ academic performance. Parents have an important role in education because they influence their children’s lives. Parents should be involved in school because they are responsible for their children’s welfare and development, so they should know what is happening there. The second advantage of introducing a parental involvement program is that it will encourage students’ learning motivation. Students who receive encouragement from their parents are likelier to want to do well in school and achieve their goals.


The first disadvantage is that students may feel pressure from their parents if they are involved in some school activities, especially those that require them to be away from home for long periods, such as sports. Secondly, some parents are reluctant to engage in the program since they might claim they are busy at work or in their businesses.

Possible Solution Four: Implementation of School-Based Health Centers

School-based health centres (SBHC) are a part of the federally funded community health centres (CHCs), which provide a range of services, including primary care, mental health and substance use disorder services to underserved communities. The SBHCs receive funding from state and local governments, private foundations and philanthropic organizations (Lyon et al., 2019). GHO require an effective SBHC since it will increase access to affordable healthcare for students who cannot pay for medical expenses outside the school.


The primary benefit is that it can improve the health status of low-income students. They can avoid expensive emergency room visits and hospitalisations by providing them with access to preventative health care services. Another positive aspect of the program is that it will allow children who cannot afford private insurance to access medical attention without paying a premium.


The cons of implementing school-based health centres are their cost and administrative challenges. It is estimated that it will cost between $1 million and $2 million per year to set up a comprehensive program at each school district in Mississippi. This amount does not include the costs of hiring additional doctors, nurses or other medical professionals working with students at these facilities. Secondly, there may be some resistance from parents who only want their children to attend school for academic purposes.

Discuss of barriers

The administration and other stakeholders need to identify obstacles associated with each solution. For instance, in implementing the technology, it is essential to analyze the parents’ willingness to support the program (Singh, Sharma & Paliwal, 2021). Trauma-informed care and training for teachers might be sabotaged by the teachers, particularly the ones ready to seek employment elsewhere. It is important to ascertain the barriers to parental involvement since it is a new program at the GHO. School-based health centres may face several obstacles, particularly from parents and other stakeholders. It is essential to assess the barriers to strike a balance with other programs.

Possible Solution One: Increase Access to Technology for Low-income students

Many potential barriers could prevent low-income students from accessing technology at GHO. Some of these include a lack of financial resources and insufficient educator training. I would address the barriers to the organization by communicating them to the management and the principle of GHO. Financial resources can be solved by seeking grants from the government and engaging well-wishers organizations for support (Nasuuna et al., 2019). The second barrier can be solved by exposing teachers to prior training to guide the students effectively.

Possible Solution Two: Implementation of Trauma-Informed Care Training for Teachers

Trauma-informed care is important in creating safe and supportive learning environments for all students. However, there are several potential barriers to its implementation in schools. These include a lack of awareness about the prevalence of trauma among children and insufficient training for educators (Reddig & VanLone, 2022). I would communicate the barriers in a general meeting with parents, teachers and students. GHO could provide professional development opportunities for educators on trauma-informed care and raise awareness about the issue among parents and community members through community-based education programs.

Possible Solution Three: Introduce a Parental Involvement Program

Parental involvement is critical to student success, but there are often barriers that can prevent GHO’s parents from getting involved in their child’s education. These can include a lack of understanding of the school system, busy work schedules, and transportation issues (Griffiths, Moore & Brunton, 2022). However, by identifying these obstacles early on, we can develop strategies to overcome them. For example, schools could host parent workshops on navigating the school system, offer flexible scheduling options for parental involvement activities, or provide transportation assistance to parents from rural Mississippi.

Possible Solution Four: Implementation of School-Based Health Centers

School-based health centres can provide vital medical and mental health services mainly to students from humble backgrounds. The main obstacle to its implementation is funding. These centres can be expensive and may require outside financial support (Francis et al., 2021). Another challenge is staffing; qualified healthcare providers may be difficult to recruit and retain in GHO School. I would communicate the barriers through the school accountant. The main solution to the funding is requesting the parents to contribute towards the program. Based on the staffing, GHO can request qualified healthcare personnel from the state, where the state or the federal government will pay the staff.

Summary of the rationale for the selected solution

In my case, I have selected the parental engagement program as the most essential among the other three. First, the barriers are few, including a lack of understanding of the school system, busy work schedules, and transportation issues (Sujarwo et al., 2021). All three barriers would not cost GHO many expenses. For instance, it is cheap to offer the means of transport to a few parents from rural areas. The work schedule issue can be solved by organizing meetings during weekends or even holidays. The meetings can incorporate education to ensure parents understand their schools’ challenges. However, implementing the other three solutions requires time, professionals and much money.


Christian-Brandt, A. S., Santacrose, D. E., & Barnett, M. L. (2020). In the trauma-informed care trenches: Teacher compassion satisfaction, secondary traumatic stress, burnout, and intent to leave education within underserved elementary schools. Child abuse & neglect110, 104437.

Cutuli, J. J., Alderfer, M. A., & Marsac, M. L. (2019). Introduction to the special issue: Trauma-informed care for children and families. Psychological Services16(1), 1.

Francis, L., DePriest, K., Sharps, P., Wilson, P., Ling, C., Bowie, J., & Thorpe Jr, R. J. (2021). A mixed-methods systematic review identifying, describing, and examining the effects of school-based care coordination programs in the US on all reported outcomes. Preventive medicine153, 106850.

Leenders, H., De Jong, J., Monfrance, M., & Haelermans, C. (2019). Building strong parent–teacher relationships in primary education: The challenge of two-way communication. Cambridge Journal of Education49(4), 519-533.

Liang, C. T., Liu, L., Rocchino, G. H., Kohler, B. A., & Rosenberger, T. (2020). Trauma-informed care training for educators: Some preliminary evidence. Journal of Prevention and Health Promotion1(2), 240-263.

Lyon, A. R., Pullmann, M. D., Whitaker, K., Ludwig, K., Wasse, J. K., & McCauley, E. (2019). A digital feedback system to support implementation of measurement-based care by school-based mental health clinicians. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology48(sup1), S168-S179.

Morgan, H. (2022). Alleviating the challenges with remote learning during a pandemic. Education Sciences12(2), 109.

Nasuuna, E., Kigozi, J., Muwanguzi, P. A., Babirye, J., Kiwala, L., Muganzi, A., … & Nakanjako, D. (2019). Challenges faced by caregivers of virally non-suppressed children on the intensive adherence counselling program in Uganda: a qualitative study. BMC health services research19(1), 1-10.

Reddig, N., & VanLone, J. (2022). Pre-service teacher preparation in trauma-informed pedagogy: A review of state competencies. Leadership and Policy in Schools, 1-12.

Schmid, E., & Garrels, V. (2021). Parental involvement and educational success among vulnerable students in vocational education and training. Educational Research63(4), 456-473.

Singh, A., Sharma, S., & Paliwal, M. (2021). Adoption intention and effectiveness of digital collaboration platforms for online learning: the Indian students’ perspective. Interactive Technology and Smart Education18(4), 493-514.

Sujarwo, S., Kusumawardani, E., Prasetyo, I., & Herwin, H. (2021). Parent Involvement in Adolescents’ Education: A Case Study of Partnership Models. Cypriot Journal of Educational Sciences16(4), 1563-1581.