Criminal Careers and Crime Control in Massachusetts [The Glueck Study]: A Matched-Sample Longitudinal Research Design, Phase I, 1939-1963 (ICPSR 9735)

Principal Investigator(s): Laub, John H.; Sampson, Robert J.


The relationship between crime control policies and fundamental parameters of the criminal career, such as career length, participation in offenses, and frequency and seriousness of offenses committed, is examined in this data collection. The investigators coded, recoded, and computerized parts of the raw data from Sheldon and Eleanor Glueck's three-wave, matched sample study of juvenile and adult criminal behavior, extracting the criminal histories of the 500 delinquents (officially defined) from the Glueck study. Data were originally collected by the Gluecks in 1940 through psychiatric interviews with subjects, parent and teacher reports, and official records obtained from police, court, and correctional files. The subjects were subsequently interviewed again between 1949 and 1965 at or near the age of 25, and again at or near the age of 32. The data coded by Laub and Sampson include only information collected from official records. The data address in part (1) what effects probation, incarceration, and parole have on the length of criminal career and frequency of criminal incidents of an offender, (2) how the effects of criminal control policies vary in relation to the length of sentence, type of offense, and age of the offender, (3) which factors in criminal control policy correlate with criminal career termination, (4) how well age of first offense predicts the length of criminal career, and (5) how age of offender relates to type of offense committed. Every incident of arrest up to the age of 32 for each respondent (ranging from 1 to 51 arrests) is recorded in the data file. Variables include the dates of arrest, up to three charges associated with the arrest, court disposition, and starting and ending dates of probation, incarceration, and parole associated with the arrest.

Access Notes

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


DS1:  Data File - Download All Files (7.282 MB)
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ASCII + SAS Setup    SPSS Setup    Stata Setup   
DS2:  SAS Data Definition Statements - Download All Files (0.038 MB)

ASCII + SAS Setup   

Study Description


Laub, John H., and Robert J. Sampson. CRIMINAL CAREERS AND CRIME CONTROL IN MASSACHUSETTS [THE GLUECK STUDY]: A MATCHED-SAMPLE LONGITUDINAL RESEARCH DESIGN, PHASE I, 1939-1963. Prepared by Sociometrics Corporation. ICPSR ed. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [producer and distributor], 1994.

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This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (87-IJ-CX-0022)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    career criminals, crime control, crime control policies, criminal histories, criminality prediction, offenders, offenses

Geographic Coverage:    Massachusetts, United States

Date of Collection:   

  • 1988-01--1989-12

Universe:    All delinquent boys in correctional schools in the state of Massachusetts during 1940.

Data Type(s):    administrative records data, and event/transaction data


Sample:    A two-stage, clustered sample, with delinquents as the first stage and record of arrest as the second stage.

Data Source:

state and local police, court and correctional files, and FBI arrest data

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Standardized missing values.
  • Performed recodes and/or calculated derived variables.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.


Original ICPSR Release:   1992-03-04

Version History:

  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.

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