Frequency of Incarceration, Criminal Thinking, and Sense of Coherence Among Male Japanese Criminals in Offender Rehabilitation Facilities

Tuesday, July 15, 2014: 3:45 PM
Room: 422
Oral Presentation
Kaori KISHI , Doctoral Program in Human-Care Sciences, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan
Fumi TAKEDA , Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences, Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Japan
Shuko HOTOGE , University of Human Arts and Sciences, Japan
Yuko NAGATA , Yuko Nagata Law Office, Japan
For former convicts, reintegration into society is complicated by psychological factors, such as mental strains and personality traits, and socioeconomic factors, such as unstable employment. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between the frequency of incarceration (at children's self-reliance support facilities, juvenile reformatories, juvenile penitentiaries, and prisons) and the personality factors of criminal thinking and sense of coherence (SOC).

This study was conducted at two metropolitan area offender rehabilitation facilities and participants were 116 Japanese men who had been placed under parole/probationary supervision or had been recently released from prison. The participants completed a questionnaire survey that contained the Japanese version of the 13-item SOC scale, the Japanese criminogenic thinking inventory (JCTI), and self-reported demographic items. The SOC scale consists of the three subscales of comprehensibility, manageability, and meaningfulness. The JCTI contains four subscales including discontinuity, “cut off” thinking, self-deception, and problem avoidance. Spearman’s rank correlation coefficients were calculated to assess the relationship between the frequency of incarceration and each personality factor. In addition, the Man-Whitney U test and Kruskal-Wallis test were performed to analyze the relationship between frequency of incarceration and demographic variables including age, dwelling environment, education, marital status, job history, and the latest charged offense.

The results revealed negative correlations between the frequency of incarceration and the total SOC score and the scores on the comprehensibility and manageability subscales. A positive correlation was observed between the frequency of incarceration and the JCTI subscale of “cut off” thinking. The frequency of imprisonment (at prison only) and the demographic variables of marital status and the latest charged offense were found to be significantly correlated.

Improving offenders’ SOC and criminal thinking might mitigate the risk of recidivism and facilitate their reentry into society. Our findings will be discussed further in our presentation.