1932

Abstract

After sketching how my own interest and research into bullying problems began, I address a number of potentially controversial issues related to the definition and measurement of such problems. The importance of maintaining the distinctions between bullying victimization and general victimization and between bullying perpetration and general aggression is strongly emphasized. There are particular problems with the common method of peer nominations for purposes of prevalence estimation, comparisons of such estimates and mean levels across groups and time, and measurement of change. Two large-scale projects with time series data show that several recent claims about cyber bullying made in the media and by some researchers are greatly exaggerated and lack scientific support. Recent meta-analyses of the long-term outcomes for former bullies and victims provide convincing evidence that being involved in such problems is not just a harmless and passing school problem but something that has serious adjustment and public health consequences that also entail great costs to society. Another section presents my view of why the theme of bullying took quite some time to reach the peer relations research community in the United States and the role of a dominant research tradition focusing on “likeability” in this account. In a final section, I summarize some reasons why it may be considered important and interesting to focus both research and intervention on bully/victim problems.

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/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-clinpsy-050212-185516
2013-03-28
2024-05-27
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  • Article Type: Review Article
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