biosocial school | Definition

Doc's CJ Glossary by Adam J. McKee
Course: Criminology

The biosocial school of criminology studies how biological and social factors interact to influence a person’s likelihood of engaging in criminal behavior.

The biosocial school of criminology is an area of study that brings together ideas from biology and sociology to explore how both biological and social factors can affect a person’s chance of engaging in criminal behavior. In other words, this viewpoint believes that things like our genes and how our brains work can interact with our environment and social relationships to shape the way we act.

According to the biosocial perspective, there are many different biological factors that could play a role in criminal behavior. Some of these factors might be related to our genetics, which are the traits that we inherit from our parents. For example, some people might be more likely to act aggressively or take risks because of the genes they were born with. Another biological factor could be the way our brains work, such as how different chemicals in our brains help us control our emotions or make decisions. Hormonal imbalances, like having too much or too little of a certain hormone, can also impact the way we behave.

At the same time, biosocial criminology also considers social and environmental factors that might contribute to criminal behavior. These factors can include things like growing up in a poor neighborhood, having a family that doesn’t provide enough support, or hanging out with friends who make bad choices. All of these experiences can shape the way we think about what’s right and wrong, and they can influence the choices we make throughout our lives.

Researchers who study biosocial criminology use a wide range of methods to better understand how biological and social factors come together to shape criminal behavior. For instance, they might study how certain genes are linked to aggressive behavior or examine how brain activity differs between people who have committed crimes and those who haven’t. They might also look at how different social factors, like having a stable family or being exposed to violence, can affect a person’s likelihood of getting involved in criminal activities.

The main goal of this research is to figure out what causes people to engage in criminal behavior so that we can come up with better ways to prevent it from happening in the first place. By understanding the many different factors that can influence a person’s behavior, we can develop more effective interventions and strategies to help people stay on the right path. For example, we might be able to create programs that teach kids how to manage their emotions or make better decisions, or we might be able to provide more support to families who are struggling to create a safe and stable environment for their children.

In summary, biosocial criminology is an interdisciplinary field that combines ideas from both biology and sociology to explore the complex relationship between biological and social factors in shaping criminal behavior. By examining how these factors work together, researchers hope to gain a deeper understanding of the causes of criminal behavior and develop more effective ways to prevent it.

[ Glossary ]

Last Modified: 05/05/2023

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