Pittsburgh Youth Study Age Variables, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 1987-2001 (ICPSR 37354)
Version Date: Sep 30, 2019 View help for published
Principal Investigator(s): View help for Principal Investigator(s)
Rolf Loeber, University of Pittsburgh; Magda Stouthamer-Loeber, University of Pittsburgh; David P. Farrington, University of Cambridge; Dustin Pardini, University of Pittsburgh
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Summary View help for Summary
The Pittsburgh Youth Study (PYS) is part of the larger "Program of Research on the Causes and Correlates of Delinquency" initiated by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention in 1986. PYS aims to document the development of antisocial and delinquent behavior from childhood to early adulthood, the risk factors that impinge on that development, and help seeking and service provision of boys' behavior problems. The study also focuses on boys' development of alcohol and drug use, and internalizing problems.
PYS consists of three samples of boys who were in the first, fourth, and seventh grades in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania public schools during the 1987-1988 academic year (called the youngest, middle, and oldest sample, respectively). Using a screening risk score that measured each boy's antisocial behavior, boys identified at the top 30 percent within each grade sample on the screening risk measure (n=~250), as well as an equal number of boys randomly selected from the remainder (n=~250), were selected for follow-up. Consequently, the final sample for the study consisted of 1,517 total students selected for follow-up. 506 of these students were in the oldest sample, 508 were in the middle sample, and 503 were in the youngest sample.
Assessments were conducted semiannually and then annually using multiple informants (i.e., boys, parents, teachers) between 1987 and 2010. The youngest sample was assessed from ages 6-19 and again at ages 25 and 28. The middle sample was assessed from ages 9-13 and again at age 23. The oldest sample was assessed from ages 13-25, with an additional assessment at age 35. Information has been collected on a broad range of risk and protective factors across multiple domains (e.g., individual, family, peer, school, neighborhood). Measures of conduct problems, substance use/abuse, criminal behavior, mental health problems have been collected.
This collection contains data for participants' ages at each phase of the PYS study and were created by using the PYS raw data. The raw data are available at ICPSR in the following studies: Pittsburgh Youth Study Youngest Sample (1987 - 2001) [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania], Pittsburgh Youth Study Middle Sample (1987 - 1991) [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania] , and Pittsburgh Youth Study Oldest Sample (1987 - 2000) [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania].
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Access to these data is restricted. Users interested in obtaining these data must complete a Restricted Data Use Agreement. Data are provided via ICPSR's Virtual Data Enclave (VDE). Apply for access to these data through the ICPSR VDE portal. Information and instructions are available within the data portal. For further assistance please reference the VDE Guide to learn about the application process, about using the VDE, and how to request disclosure review of VDE output.
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Time Period(s) View help for Time Period(s)
Date of Collection View help for Date of Collection
Data Collection Notes View help for Data Collection Notes
- The age variable data were created by using the PYS raw data. The raw data are available at ICPSR in the following studies: Pittsburgh Youth Study Youngest Sample (1987 - 2001) [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania], Pittsburgh Youth Study Middle Sample (1987 - 1991) [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania] , and Pittsburgh Youth Study Oldest Sample (1987 - 2000) [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania].
Study Purpose View help for Study Purpose
The Pittsburgh Youth Study (PYS) is a part of the Program of Research on the Causes and Correlates of Delinquency (Causes and Correlates), initiated in 1986 by the United States Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Causes and Correlates is designed to improve the understanding of serious delinquency, violence, and drug use by examining how youth develop within the context of family, school, peers, and community. Specifically, PYS aims to document the development of antisocial and delinquent behavior from childhood to early adulthood, the risk factors that impinge on that development, and help seeking and service provision of boys' behavior problems. It also focuses on boys' development of alcohol and drug use, and internalizing problems. Additionally, the study serves as a real-life laboratory for advancing and testing hypothesized developmental pathways.
Sample View help for Sample
The initial sample for the Pittsburgh Youth Study (PYS) was selected with the assistance of the Pittsburgh Board of Education in 1987. PYS researchers started out with comprehensive public school lists of the enrollment of 1,631, 1,432, and 1,419 male students in grades 1, 4, and 7 during the 1987-1988 school year respectively. From these lists, researchers randomly selected about 1,100 boys in each of the three grades to be contacted (1,165, 1,146, and 1,125 in grades 1, 4, and 7, respectively). However, a number of the children had moved out of the school district, proved to be girls, or were of incorrect age and were therefore not eligible participants. Eventually, 1,006, 1,004, and 998 families with eligible boys in grades 1, 4, and 7, respectively, were contacted. Boys in grade 1 became the "youngest" sample, boys in grade 4 became the "middle" sample, and boys in grade 7 became the "oldest" sample. From this contact, 84.6 percent, 86.3 percent, and 83.9 percent of the eligible boys in the youngest, middle, and oldest samples respectively chose to participate in PYS.
In order to increase the number of high-risk males in the sample, researchers used a screening assessment on a subset of the boys during the first phase of the study, Phase S. Risk scores from this screening assessment measured each boy's antisocial behavior using parent, teacher, and self-report instruments. Within each grade-based sample, boys identified at the top 30 percent on the screening risk measure (n=~250), as well as an equal number of boys randomly selected from the remaining 70 percent (n=~250), were selected for follow-up in subsequent phases (Phase A- Phase DD). This resulted in the final samples of 503, 508, and 506 boys in grades 1, 4, and 7, respectively, who together with their parent were to be followed up.
The youngest sample (N=503) and the oldest sample (N=506) have been assessed continuously since 1987, while the middle sample (N=508) was only assessed seven times from ages 10-13. Assessments of each of the cohorts were carried out initially half-yearly, and later yearly. When the assessment periods switched from six months to one year, the youngest sample was interviewed every spring and the oldest sample every fall. Each phase letter still represents a six-month period. Thus, all the phases from H through AA have data for only one sample.
Time Method View help for Time Method
Universe View help for Universe
Students who were in first, fourth, or seventh grade during the 1987-1988 school year in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Unit(s) of Observation View help for Unit(s) of Observation
Data Source View help for Data Source
Self-Report and mail questionnaires completed by student participants and one parental figure
In-person and telephone structured interviews of student participants and one parental figure
Data Type(s) View help for Data Type(s)
Mode of Data Collection View help for Mode of Data Collection
Description of Variables View help for Description of Variables
This collection contains data for participants' ages at each phase of the PYS study.
Response Rates View help for Response Rates
Participant retention for the Pittsburgh Youth Study has historically been high (mean=91 percent), with 82 percent of living participants completing the most recent interview conducted in 2010.Hide
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.