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Jeffery T. Ulmer

Jeffery T. Ulmer

Professor of Sociology and Criminology

Associate Department Head, Department of Sociology and Criminology

215 Oswald Tower
University Park , PA 16802
Office Phone: (814) 865-6429

Curriculum Vitae

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  1. Ph.D. in Sociology, 1993, The Pennsylvania State University.
  2. M.A. in Sociology, 1990, The Pennsylvania State University.
  3. B.A., 1988, Sociology, Legal Studies, Susquehanna University.

Research and Teaching Interests

Dr. Ulmer is Associate Head of the Department. His interests include criminology, social psychology, sociology of religion, organizations, and the integration of qualitative and quantitative methods.

Selected Awards

2012 Distinguished Scholar Award, American Society of Criminology, Division on Corrections and Sentencing.

2012 Outstanding Article Award, American Society of Criminology, for Steffensmeier, Ulmer, Feldmeyer and Harris.  2010.  Criminology 48(4):1133-1169.

2006 (with Darrell Steffensmeier) Michael Hindelang Award for Outstanding Book from the American Society of Criminology for Confessions of a Dying Thief:  Understanding Criminal Careers and Illegal Enterprise.

2001 Distinguished New Scholar Award, American Society of Criminology, Division on Corrections and Sentencing.

Selected Publications


Ulmer, Jeffery T. and Mindy Bradley (editors).  Forthcoming (2017).  Punishment Decisions:  Locations of Disparity.  New York:  Routledge.

Kramer, John H. and Jeffery T. Ulmer.  2009.  Sentencing Guidelines:  Lessons from Pennsylvania.  Boulder, CO:  Lynne Rienner Publishers.

Steffensmeier, Darrell and Jeffery T. Ulmer. 2005. Confessions of a Dying Thief: Understanding Criminal Careers and Criminal Enterprise. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Aldine.

Ulmer, Jeffery T. 1997. Social Worlds of Sentencing: Court Communities Under Sentencing Guidelines. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Recent Articles and Chapters

Ulmer, Jeffery T. and Brian D. Johnson.  In Press.  "Organizational Conformity and Punishment:  Federal Court Communities and Judge Initiated Guideline Departures."  Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology.

Harris, Casey and Jeffery T. Ulmer.  Forthcoming.  "'Mighty Like a River:'  The Black Protestant Church and Violence in Black Communities."  The Sociological Quarterly.

Painter-Davis, Noah, Darrell Steffensmeier, and Jeffery T. Ulmer.  Forthcoming.  "The Intersectionality of Race, Ethnicity, Gender, and Age in Criminal Punishment."  Sociological Perspectives.

Light, Michael and Jeffery T. Ulmer.  2016.  "Explaining the Gaps in White, Black, and Hispanic Violence Since 1990:  Accounting for Immigration, Incarceration, and Inequality."  American Sociological Review 81(2).

Ulmer, Jeffery T., Noah Painter-Davis, and Leigh Tinik.  2016.  "Disproportional Imprisonment of Black and Hispanic Males:  Sentencing Discretion, Processing Outcomes, and Policy Structures."  Justice Quarterly 33(4).

Ulmer, Jeffery T. and Julia Laskorunsky.  2016.  "The Role of Juvenile Adjudications in the Disproportional Incarceration of African American and Hispanic Defendants."  Journal of Crime and Justice 39(1):9-27.

Darrell Steffensmeier and Jeffery T. Ulmer. 2015. “Taking Criminal Opportunity Seriously: An Actor-Centered Approach.” pp. 361-397 in Challenging Criminological Theory: The Legacy of Ruth Kornhauser—Advances in Criminological Theory, Volume 19, edited by P. Wilcox, F. Cullen, R. Sampson, and B. Dooley. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction.

Ulmer, Jeffery T. 2014.  "The Mismatch of Guidelines and Offender Dangerousness and Blameworthiness:  Departures as Policy Signals from the Courts."  Criminology and Public Policy 13(2):271-280.

Ulmer, Jeffery T. and Darrell Steffensmeier. 2014. “The Age and Crime Relationship: Social Variation, Social Explanations.” In The Nurture versus Biosocial Debate in Criminology, edited by K. Beaver, B. Boutwell, and J.C. Barnes. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.

Feldmeyer, Ben, Darrell Steffensmeier, and Jeffery T. Ulmer. 2013. “Racial/Ethnic Composition and Violence: Size-of-Place Variations in Percent Black and Percent Latino Effects on Violence Rates.” Sociological Forum 28(4).

Ulmer, Jeffery T. and Casey Harris. 2013. “The Effects of Religious Contexts on Black, Latino, and White Violence Rates.” The Sociological Quarterly 54(4):610-646.

Desmond, Scott, Jeffery T. Ulmer, and Christopher Bader. 2013. “Religion, Self Control, and Delinquency.” Deviant Behavior 34(5):384-406.

Ulmer, Jeffery T., Casey Harris, and Darrell Steffensmeier.  2012. “Race/Ethnic Disparities in Structural Disadvantage and Crime: White, Black, and Hispanic Comparisons.”  Social Science Quarterly 93(3):799-819.

Silver, Eric, and Jeffery T. Ulmer (equal authorship).  2012. “Future Selves and Self-Control Motivation:  Toward a Conceptualization of the “Self” in Self-Control Theory.”  Deviant Behavior 33(7):699-714.

Ulmer, Jeffery T. 2012.  “Recent Developments and New Directions in Sentencing Research.” Justice Quarterly 29(1):1-40.

Ulmer, Jeffery T., Scott Desmond, Sung Joon Jang, and Byron Johnson. 2012. “Religious Involvement and Dynamics of Marijuana Use: Initiation, Persistence, and Desistence.” Deviant Behavior 33(6):448-468.

Ulmer, Jeffery T. 2012. “Religion as a Unique Cultural Influence on Crime and Delinquency.” Pp. 163-172 in Contemporary Issues in Criminological Theory and Research—The Role of Social Institutions edited by R. Rosenfeld, K. Quinet, and C. Garcia. New York: Wadsworth.

Termination details:

Research Interests:

Criminology, social psychology, organizations, race and ethnic inequality, theory, religion
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