A critical skillset in the field of criminal justice is data-based decision making. This involves locating relevant data within a given set of parameters and analyzing that data to answer questions. One type of data analysis is the measurement of central tendency. In this assignment, you’ll calculate measures of central tendency to better understand the meaning, uses, and limitations of central tendency in criminal justice research.
Find a raw data set of at least 20 data points from a criminal justice data source. Return to your exploration of criminal justice repositories from the discussion this week. Many of these repositories have raw collected data in addition to data analysis and reports. For example, the Bureau of Justice Statistics Data Collection page contains census data for parolees, law enforcement officers, and jail inmates. You can truncate a larger data set to give a small set of data to work with; for example, you may choose to narrow the data down to a particular geographic region or type of criminal justice organization.
Note: You will use the data set you select for next week’s assignment as well.
Write a 790- to 875-word paper in which you do the following:
Explain why you selected this data set and what questions you would be able to answer with it. In an appendix, include the data set table with a reference link.
Calculate the mean and median for your data set.
Interpret the results of your calculation. Explain how the mean and median each represent the central tendency of this small set of data, along with how and why they differ in exact value.
Explain the implications of the results of your calculation. Consider the following questions in your response:
When would the mean value or median value be useful?
What are the limitations of the mean and the median in this data set?
What do these measures of central tendency tell you or not tell you?
Apply what you have learned about central tendencies with mean and median. Provide an example and short explanation of how you think mean and median could be used in your desired career in the field of criminal justice.
Cite a minimum of 2 peer-reviewed sources.
Format your paper according to APA guidelines.
Search Data Collections | Bureau of Justice Statistics (ojp.gov)