Date of Award

5-6-2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Criminology

First Advisor

Randy L. Martin, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

John J. Gibbs, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Jennifer Gossett, Ph.D.

Fourth Advisor

Erika Frenzel, Ph.D.

Fifth Advisor

Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, Ph.D.

Abstract

This mixed-methodology study explores the ways in which Gender has been treated as a construct and variable in social science research. Through the application of a coding scheme based in the Integral model and Integral Methodological Pluralism (Esbjörn-Hargens, 2006; Wilber, 2006), a content analysis of recently published research in criminology, psychology, and sociology was conducted. A multi-stage analytic framework was then applied in order to identify the strengths and weaknesses of our current approaches to studying Gender in the social sciences. Findings from these analyses suggest that researchers continue to explore a wide range of conceptual definitions of Gender while relying on a more limited range of operational definitions in the formation of their particular measurement models. These findings were then used to construct a new, more inclusive multi-perspective model for the study of Gender in the social sciences. Additionally, the Integral model was used to construct a multi-perspective approach to validity assessment. It is argued that this multi-perspective approach provides a more genuine assessment of researcher bias and should, therefore, be incorporated into future social science research.

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