Peer Deviancy scale

The Peer Deviancy Scale is a tool used to measure the extent to which an individuals behavior deviates from the norms of their peer group. It was developed by researchers at the University of Michigan in the 1970s. The scale consists of 16 items that measure the degree to which a person engages in behaviors that are considered deviant by their peers. These behaviors range from minor infractions, such as being late to class or not doing homework, to more serious offenses such as stealing or using drugs. The scale is used to assess the level of deviance in a persons behavior relative to their peers. The scale is typically administered in a classroom or other group setting, and the results are used to identify individuals who are at risk for engaging in deviant behavior. The Peer Deviancy Scale can be used to inform interventions and preventive strategies aimed at reducing the likelihood of deviant behavior.
How many of your closest friends have: (How many of your son’s/daughter’s best friends have):
1. Taken something of value from someone else’s locker‚ desk‚ purse‚ or home?
2. Taken something from a store without paying for it?
3. Taken a car or other motor vehicle for a ride without the owner’s permission?
4. Broken into a building‚ car‚ house‚ etc. to steal something?
5. Purposely damaged or destroyed things at school‚ store‚ or home?
6. Hit someone really badly?
7. Hit or slapped a boyfriend/girlfriend really badly?
8. Used a weapon or force to hurt another person?
9. Used a weapon or force to get money or things from another person?
10. Carried a weapon‚ like a knife or gun‚ to school?
11. Drank alcohol?
12. Smoked cigarettes?
13. Been in a gang fight?
Academic-related behaviors
14. Skipped school without an excuse?
15. Cheated on tests or homework?
16. Lied to a teacher about something they did?
17. Act up and make trouble in school?
The internal consistency of the scores‚ as measured by Cronbach’s alpha‚ was .85 for a random sample‚ .88 for a high-risk sample‚ and .84 for a parent sample (Miller-Johnson et al.‚ 2004).
This measure was adapted from the “Things That My Friends Have Done” used by the Fast Track project (Conduct Problems Prevention Research Group‚ 1998).
·         School and Academics
  • Close Friends
This instrument can be found on pages 94-96 of Latino Families and Youth: A Compendium of Assessment Tools‚ available online at:
Point values are assigned as follows:
0 = None of them
1 = Very few of them
2 = Some of them
3 = Most of them
4 = All of them
A total score‚ “Peer Deviancy (student rating)” or “Peer Deviancy (parent rating)‚” is calculated based on the mean of the 10 items (items 2-11).

Conduct Problems Prevention Research Group (1998). Technical reports for the Fast Track assessment battery (Rep. No. Unpublished technical report).

Chadwick‚ B. A.‚ Top‚ B. L.‚ & McClendon‚ R. J. (2010). Shield of faith: The power of religion in the lives of LDS youth and young adults. Provo‚ UT: BYU Religious Studies Center.

Miller-Johnson‚ S.‚ Sullivan‚ T. N.‚ & Simon‚ T. R. (2004).Evaluating the impact of interventions in the Multisite Violence Prevention Study: Samples‚ procedures‚ and measures. American Journal of Preventive Medicine‚ 26(1)‚ 48-61.