Developmental Trajectories of Substance Use and Illegal Activity: Examining Dual Trajectory Models

Helene Raskin White, Rutgers University
Rolf Loeber, University of Pittsburgh
Magda Stouthamer-Loeber, University of Pittsburgh
Robert J. Pandina, Rutgers University

The purpose of this study is to examine the comorbidity between substance use and illegal activity from childhood into young adulthood. The first aim of this paper is to empirically identify and characterize different developmental trajetories of alcohol, marijuana and hard drug use as well as property and violent offenses from the ages 7 to 25 years. Then we examine the joint associations between trajectories for each pair of these problem behaviors. A major advantage of this approach is that it links the entire developmental course of the two behaviors rather than relating a single measurement of each behavior at a single time period (Nagin & Tremblay, 2001, p. 31).

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Updated 05/20/2006