Developmental and Life-Course Criminology, Juvenile Delinquency, Measurement, Quantitative Methods
My research takes a developmental and life-course approach to understand causes and consequences of criminal trajectories and key life transitions including involuntary contact with the criminal justice system, gang involvement, and teenage pregnancy. This research has investigated antisocial behavior that spans different developmental periods, from quantifying the effects of maternal smoking in utero on externalizing behaviors in young children to the long-term effects of adolescent gang involvement on adult development. Often employing advanced quantitative methods, my work has advanced understanding of intergenerational continuity in gang membership, factors that attenuate adverse consequences of justice system contact, and quantification of the degree of applicability of rival criminological theories to individuals, among other areas.
A second core area of my research is measurement. This body of research helps to ensure measures adequately reflect criminology’s key constructs, and to clarify the implications of measurement decisions for empirical tests of criminological theories. Utilizing structural equation, multilevel structural equation, and item response models, these works have added to measurement debates centered on the constructs of self-control, peer delinquency, disorder/incivilities, and crime.
My substantive teaching interests include developmental and life-course criminology, juvenile delinquency, and criminological theory. My methodological teaching interests are wide-ranging and include research methods and statistics, item response theory, structural equation modeling, multilevel modeling, counterfactual methods, and latent class methods.
I am originally from Maryland and enjoy trail running, cooking, and fixing things in my spare time. I received a B.S. in Physics and Psychology from Rutgers University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Criminology, Law & Society from the University of Florida. I joined the faculty at Temple University in 2015 following four years on faculty at the University of Texas at San Antonio. I am a past recipient of the Harry Frank Guggenheim Dissertation Fellowship and the ACJS-SAGE Junior Faculty Teaching Award.
Ward, J.T., McConaghy, M. & Bennett, J.Z. (2018). Differential applicability of criminological theories to individuals? The case of social learning vis-à-vis social control. Crime & Delinquency, 64, 510-541.
Augustyn, M.B., Ward, J.T., & Krohn, M.D. (2017). Exploring intergenerational continuity in gang membership. Gangs in a Developmental Perspective, special issue of Journal of Crime and Justice, 40, 252-274.
Ward, J.T., Link, N.W., & Taylor, R.B. (2017). New windows into a broken construct: A multilevel factor analysis and DIF assessment of perceived incivilities. Journal of Criminal Justice, 51, 74-88.
Nobles, M.R, Ward, J.T., & Tillyer, R. (2016). The impact of neighborhood context on spatiotemporal patterns of burglary. Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, 53, 711-740.
Augustyn, M.B., & Ward, J.T. (2015). Exploring the sanction-crime relationship through a lens of procedural justice. Journal of Criminal Justice, 43, 470-479.
Ward, J.T., Boman, J.H., & Jones, S. (2015). Hirschi’s redefined self-control: Assessing the implications of the merger between social- and self-control theories. Crime & Delinquency, 61, 1206-1233.
Ward, J.T., Nobles, M.R., & Fox, K.A. (2015). Disentangling self-control from its elements: A bifactor analysis. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 31, 595-627.
Ward, J.T., Krohn, M.D., & Gibson, C.L. (2014). The effects of police contact on developmental trajectories of violence: A group-based, propensity score matching analysis. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 29, 440-475.
Krohn, M.D., Ward, J.T., Thornberry, T.P., Lizotte, A.J., & Chu, R. (2011). The cascading effects of gang membership in adolescence across the life-course. Criminology, 49, 991-1028.
Ward, J.T., Gibson, C.L., Boman, J., & Leite, W.L. (2010). Assessing the validity of the Retrospective Behavioral Self-control scale: Is the general theory of crime stronger than the evidence suggests? Criminal Justice and Behavior, 37, 336-357.
Ward, J.T., Stogner, J., Gibson, C.L., & Akers, R.L. (2010). A new trick for an old dog: Applying developmental trajectories to inform drug use progression. Journal of Drug Issues, 40, 755-782.