Specifying the Sources of Misperceptions of Peer Deviance: A Tale of Two Levels

John H. Boman, Jacob Young, Julie Marie Baldwin, Ryan C. Meldrum

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    15 Scopus citations


    "Peer deviance" is normally measured through one's perceptions of the deviant behavior of friends. However, recent research suggests that peer deviance perceptions may be inaccurate and unreflective of a peer's actual deviance. Using dyadic data, the current study addresses the potential for three distinct sources of misperceptions of peer deviance stemming from (a) the actor who generates the perception, (b) the friend about whose deviance is perceived, and (c) the friendship between the actor and the friend. Using multilevel regression alongside analyses of variance (ANOVAs), results demonstrate that misperceptions, overperceptions, and underperceptions of peer deviance occur frequently and systematically covary with the deviant behavior of the perceiver, the friend, and the total amount of deviance within the friendship.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)91-113
    Number of pages23
    JournalCriminal Justice and Behavior
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 2014


    • differential association
    • friendship dyads
    • measurement
    • misperception
    • peer deviance
    • perceptions

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
    • General Psychology
    • Law


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