Shaun A. Thomas

Shaun A. Thomas

Associate Professor

J. William Fulbright College of Arts & Sciences


Phone: 479-575-3205

Download vcard


Underpinning much of my past and present research is a focus on the dynamic nature of neighborhoods. The manner in which neighborhoods change, the causes associated with these changes, and the rapidity with which these changes transpire are issues I explore. 

Some of my prior publications have centered on developing structural and cultural explanations for regional variations in rates of violence and explicating the criminological impact of civic engagement and civic oriented communities. Much of my current research centers on investigating social theories of variation in the nature and prevalence of crime across places and social groups as well as theories that attempt to account for the race, poverty, and crime nexus. Another topic integral to my research program is the investigation of the criminological impact of social and institutional isolation, especially among youth. In two projects, a colleague and I proposed that structural resource deprivation and a weak civic participatory culture foster institutional isolation among youth, which, in turn, elevates rates of crime. 

Violence, race and crime, poverty and crime, communities and crime, policing, risk of crime, institutions of social control, juvenile justice, institutionally isolated youth, crime as a public health issue, the nature of violence, social justice, victimology, deviant behavior, and rural and urban studies.

Graduate:  Regression Analysis, Categorical Analysis, Secondary Data Analysis and Management, Criminological Theory, Social Statistics, Criminal Violence, Ethics, and Human Resource Management.

Undergraduate:  Police and Society, Introduction to Criminal Justice, Deviant Behavior*, Victimology, Current Social Problems

2009 PhD Sociology Louisiana State University

2006 MA Sociology Louisiana State University

2002 BA Sociology University of Akron

Drawve, Grant, Shaun Thomas, and Jefftey Walker. Developing an Aggregate Neighborhood Risk of Crime Measure: Exploring the Utility of Risk Terrain Modeling. Journal of Criminal Justice

Berthelot, Emily, Timothy C. Brown, Shaun A. Thomas, and Kyle Burgason. 2015. “Racial (In)variance, Disadvanatge,a nd Lethal Violence: A Survival Analysis of Black Homicide Victimization Rick in the United States.” Homicide Studies.

Burgason, Kyle, Shaun A. Thomas, Emily Berthelot, and *Chris Burkey. 2014. “Gats and Gashes: Street Culture and Distinctions in the Nature of Violence between Youth and Adult Offenders" Deviant Behavior.

Thomas, Johanna, Shaun A. Thomas, *Kyle Burgason, and Lillie Wichinski. 2014. “Youth at Risk: A Longitudinal Analysis of the Criminal Trajectories of Juvenile Offenders.”   Western Criminology Review.

Burgason , Kyle, Shaun A. Thomas and Emily Berthelot. 2014. “The Nature of Violence: A Multilevel Analysis of Gun Use and Victim Injury in Violent Interpersonal Encounters." Journal of Interpersonal Violence.

Drawve, Grant, Shaun A. Thomas, and Jeffrey T. Walker. 2014. “The Likelihood of Arrest: A   Routine Activity Theory Approach to NIBRS Data.” American Journal of   Criminal Justice.

Thomas, Shaun and Edward Shihadeh. 2013. “Institutional Isolation and Crime: The Mediating Effect of Disengaged Youth on Levels of Crime.” Social Science Research.

Miller, John, John Kuykendall and Shaun A. Thomas. 2013. “Are we in this together? A analysis of the relationship between schools and their communities.” The School Community Journal

Thomas, Shaun A., Stacy C. Moak, and Jeffrey T. Walker. 2013. “Racial Bias in Detention and Community Context: The Role of Racial versus Symbolic Threat.” Race and Justice.

2015 Faculty Excellence Award for Research.  Awarded by the College of Social Sciences and Communication, University of Arkansas at Little Rock.