Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Honors Thesis



First Advisor

Krista M.C. Cline


The following study attempts to explore the relationship between the demographics of respondents and their approval of the police use of force. Many studies have determined that race seems to have the definitive effect on trust of the police. More than any other demographic, this variable is indicated as the determining factor. More recently, other studies have suggested that several other demographics and characteristics might help define trust in the police more fully. This study attempts to begin this determination using data from the aggregated General Social Survey (GSS). I hypothesized that while race would be the strongest relationship, we would also see a significant difference due to socioeconomic status (SES). SES is very strongly correlated to race in the United States, but the influence of these factors on one another can be controlled. Preliminary results suggest that while race indeed seems to be a strong predictor of approval of police of force, socioeconomic status does not have such a role.

Included in

Criminology Commons