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Consequences of school bullying and violence Christina Salmivalli University of Turku, Finland.

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Presentation on theme: "Consequences of school bullying and violence Christina Salmivalli University of Turku, Finland."— Presentation transcript:

1 Consequences of school bullying and violence Christina Salmivalli University of Turku, Finland

2 It is evident that children exposed to systematic victimization by their peers suffer from adjustment problems –Victimization is concurrently associated with depression, anxiety, low global and social self-concept, suicidal ideation, school avoidance (Card, 2003; Hawker & Boulton, 2000)… –Strongest effect sizes for internalizing problems, BUT victimization is also associated with externalizing problems –Victimization is even related to health problems (Rigby, 2001) –Several interpersonal correlates such as rejection, low number of friends and low friendship quality The bullies, and especially bully-victims, suffer from adjustment problems as well

3 Are the associations between victimization and maladjustment only concurrent, or does victimization longitudinally predict adjustment problems?

4 OVERALL: Studies investigating the consequences of victimization while controlling for intitial levels in the variables of interest are still surprisingly rare

5 Many of the concurrent correlates of victimization seem to be both antecedents and consequences of it –A vicious cycle by which children get trapped in the role of continued victimization HOWEVER: –Internalizing problems, such as depression, seem to increase as a result of victimization rather than precede it –Low self-esteem, on the other hand, is clearly an antecedent of victimization, whereas evidence of longitudinal changes in (global) self-esteem resulting from victimization is more mixed (e.g., Card, 2003)

6 Prospective relations between victimization, rejection, friendlessness and childrens self- and peer-perceptions Christina Salmivalli University of Turku, Finland (unpublished data)

7 self(1) peer(1) chronic vic (1-2) vic(3) rej(3) fri3 self(3) peer(3) Figure 2. The final model (chi-square (23)=30.16, p=.14; CFI=.99; RMSEA=.04). Grade 5/6 Grade 6/ chronic rej (1-2) chronic fri (1-2)

8 In the short term, victimization seems to influence childrens generalized perception of peers, rather than their view of themselves A negative self-perception is clearly a risk factor for victimization (but also for other peer relationship adversities, such as rejection and friendlessness)

9 What about the long run? Follow-up studies examining the long-term consequences of victimization are, to date, almost nonexistent –As an exception, Olweus (1994) followed up 87 men who had been assessed in grade 9 (and, most of them, also in grade 6) up to 23 years of age. –The former victims were relatively well-adjusted in many respects. However, they had a lower self-esteem and they suffered from depression more often than their non-victimized age-mates.

10 Long-term influences of victimization: a follow-up from adolescence to young adulthood Christina Salmivalli University of Turku, Finland (unpublished data)

11 Participants of the study 274 young adults (145 male and 129 female), who had been involved in a research on school bullying in grade 8 (1996), were approached by mailed questionnaires eight years later (2004) –measures of: depression, self-perception, perception of other people, and interpersonal goals 52.4% of men and 78.3% of women responded –overall response rate = 64.6%

12 depression self others Victimization in grade 8 (1996) assessed with - two self-report items: my classmates make fun of me; people pick on me -peer-nominations from same-sex and opposite-sex classmates Depression: BDI, α =.91 Self-perception: Rosenberg SE items, with the instruction to report the way you feel about yourself when interacting with people of your own age, α =.86 Perception of other people: 13 items describing positive and negative qualities of other people (age-mates), such as "they can really be relied on", "they are hostile", or "they really care about what happens to me" α=.88 vic same-sex noms self-rep opp-sex noms

13 depression self others opp-sex noms same-sex noms vic self-rep

14 depression self others opp-sex noms same-sex noms vic happiness and satisfaction Happiness and satisfaction scale: I am a happy person; I like being the way I am; I wish I were different; I am unhappy; I am cheerful; I am a lucky person, α=.72 self-rep.16

15 depression self others opp-sex noms same-sex noms vic happiness and satisfaction self-rep.15.33

16 depression self others opp-sex noms same-sex noms vic happiness and satisfaction perceived popularity self-rep.44 perceived family support Perceived family support: 6 items (e.g., Nobody cares for me at home; my parents like me) χ2(5)=9.09, p=.11, CFI=.97, RMSEA=.07 Perceived popularity: 11 items (e.g., I am not very popular; I have many friends).

17 Victimization in adolescence (grade 8, age 14-15) was predictive of young adults (age 22-23) depression and their perception of other people These influences were significant even controlling for scores on happiness and satisfaction measure in grade 8 Unlike victimization, perceived popularity and/or perceived family support did not predict variance in any of the outcome variables eight years later

18 Consequences for the group? Bukowski and Sippola (2001): "victimization not only damages the individual, but damages the group itself as well as the individuals who constitute the group How does victimization damage the group?

19 Experienced and observed victimization and school satisfaction With multilevel modeling, it is possible to disentangle the variance in school satisfaction between individual students, from variance between different school classes operationalization of school satisfaction: MARK THE FACE THAT BEST DESCRIBES YOU WHEN AT SCHOOL. ____ ____ _____ _____ _____ _____ _____x

20 A study with 48 classrooms (grades 4 to 6) - some initial findings: Classrooms differ from each other in the overall degree of victimization –differences in experienced victimization are between individual children, rather than between classrooms: significant differences in observed victimization can be detected between classrooms, however –there are also significant differences between classrooms in school satisfaction At the individual level, experienced victimization is related to lowered level of school satisfaction At the classroom level, the overall degree of victimization in the classroom is related to lowered level of school satisfaction

21 shool enjoyment / satisfaction experienced victimization experienced victimization observed victimization BETWEEN-LEVEL: (explaining variation between classrooms) WITHIN-LEVEL: (explaining variation between students) observed victimization degree of victimization in the classroom experienced victimization observed victimization gender (n.s.)

22 Research on consequences of victimization: some future challenges More prospective studies controlling for adjustment variables at time 1 are needed, to avoid confounding antecedents of victimization from their consequences Need to identify mechanisms of influence Need to identify moderators –protective factors ? Group-level consequences (as well as antecedents) of victimization/aggression are not yet well-known And what about group-level protective factors?

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