Previous Research Gap between elementary/high school and workplace. “Far less is known about student- to-student bullying at the undergraduate level in context of university” (Coleyshaw 2010). Where is the research on emerging adulthood/college bullying? It does not really exist.
Why College? There is an assumed increase in maturity at college but: Students are still only in a transitional phase between adolescence and adulthood. Living situation is in a relatively isolated, intense environment which might breed hostility. The tendency toward bullying might be universal, as with the case of bullying in the workplace (Namie & Namie 2009).
Definitions of Bullying No clear, universal definition of bullying; past definitions are restrictive (Carrera, DePalma, and Lameiras 2011). Previous definitions (Olweus 1978 & Coleyshaw 2010). Repeated aggressive behavior, both physical and relational, that is targeted towards a specific individual or specific group of people by either one aggressor or a group of aggressors (with possible intentions of gaining or maintaining power).
Types of Bullying Relational: o Verbal: Name calling, insults, teasing, intimidation, verbal abuse; o Covert: Spreading rumors, mimicking unkindly, negative facial or physical gestures. Physical: Kicking, pinching, hitting, pushing, tripping, or damaging property. Cyber-Bullying: Exclusion from social networking, defamatory personal website, heinous text messages.
Research Topic The nature of our research is exploratory. For this reason, we would like to examine whether or not bullying exists on Hanover’s campus, and if so, what types occur. From our observations, we expect there will be more reported relational bullying than physical and cyber-bullying.
Participants Total Participants: 200 56 Male 142 Female 2 Unknown Age Range: 18-22 Average Age: 20 90.5% Caucasian 2% African American 3.5% Hispanic 4% Other
Materials and Procedure Participants completed a questionnaire about their bullying experiences on campus that contained three sections: Situations in which they witnessed bullying Situations in which they were the victim of bullying Situations in which they were the bully.
Witness & Victim Section o There were statements describing the different types of bullying behavior and if they had ever occurred. Example: “The person made posts on Facebook or Twitter that made the student(s) upset or uncomfortable.” o There was an optional open-ended question about a specific incident.
Bully Section o There was an optional open-ended question: “Can you describe, in as much detail as you would like, an incident in which you bullied another student(s) at Hanover College?”
Frequency of Bullying Behavior MeanSt. DeviationValid N Witness Relational 1.2190.504194 Victim Relational 0.6250.557180 Witness Cyber 0.6250.582194 Witness Physical 0.3650.571193 Victim Cyber 0.2280.466179 Victim Physical 0.1110.352175
mean of Female mean of Male tdfp-value Witness Physical 0.28100.571-2.75774.340.00733 Victim Physical 0.05650.245-2.47758.240.01617 Gender Differences
Greek vs. Unaffiliated mean of Greek mean of Unaffiliated tdfp-value Witness Relational 1.3691.11563.707189.09<0.001 Witness Physical 0.4870.28262.369139.090.0192 Witness Cyber 0.7200.56011.903169.560.0587
Qualitative Data Witness o 60.23% = Relational o 23.86% = Cyber o 14.77% = Physical o 1.14% = “Not Witnessed” Bully o 63.89% = Relational o 36.11% = Don’t Bully Victim o 67.80% = Relational o 18.64% = Cyber o 8.47% = Physical o 3.39% = “Not Bullied” o 1.69% = “Choose not to say”
Case Study 1: Relational The subtleties and Greek response of relational bullying. “…being a member of a fraternity sometimes there’s a fine line between a joke and a disrespectful comment. I would say that that line has been crossed occasionally. Perhaps my brother's didn't realize or maybe they did. Usually it's verbal in nature and mostly attacks my character such as my values or personal life.”
Case Study 2: Cyber The variety of bullies and dark side of the Internet. “A Hanover staff member posted on Twitter about a girl that a male student was hooking up with. He called her disgusting/revolting fat and ugly and a waste of time. Other students saw this tweet and started showing other students and even printed it out (before it was deleted) and showed others. It got around to the girl it was about and it really upset her.”
Discussion As we expected, there was more relational bullying behaviors reported. o This was supported in both the closed-ended and open-ended questions. This type of bullying is harder to condemn because it is not as easy to detect. o This is especially true for covert relational bullying because it does not need to be as obvious as other types of bullying, such as physical.
Discussion We expected that there would be gender differences, but we did not expect it to be the stereotypical physical bullying behavior. Due to prior research, we know that the stereotypical bullying behavior occurs more among men than women, however, to us it is surprising that this difference still exists. Perhaps this means that bullying is an innate part of the human condition.
Discussion We did have speculations about Greek differences, but we were surprised at the significant differences. We do not know if the bullying behavior is happening in the Greek houses because we only know that people who identified as Greek reported such. This goes back to the close living environment. o They not only live closely, but also must spend, presumably, more time together which may lead to even more hostility and bullying behaviors.
Limitations & Future This is simply one college. The nature of the research is exploratory. This was a sobering study. We hope that people will recognize bullying as a serious issue on college campuses, and further pursue this as a research topic.
Conclusion Bullying is more widespread and varied on a college campus than recognized, but the phenomenon of harassment is already well established. Harassment may be a more familiar term used at the collegiate level. More attention should be paid to bullying.
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