“…Your children who have ridiculed me, who have chosen not to accept me, who have treated me like I am not worth their time are dead...” –excerpt from Eric Harris Manifesto, 1 of 2 Columbine High School Shooters.
Craig and his colleagues (2009) report that School bullying is a worldwide phenomenon that is threatening the livelihood of the youth when they step onto a school campus. Tragic events over the last 20 years have thrown bullying prevention and mental health into the spotlight. Article 1 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) states “human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and ...view middle of the document...
Defining the term bullying and other related terms is necessary to create a functional prevention model. According to Olweus (1993), an act of bullying involves repeated unpleasant or hurtful actions over time that is intentionally directed against a person(s) who is unable to defend themselves. The two key elements of bullying are imbalance of power and repetition (stopbullying.gov). Bullying can then be separated into 4 categories. These 4 categories are labled verbal, physical, relational and cyber. Verbal bullying can be taunting, name-calling, inappropriate sexual comments, teasing, threatening whereas physical bullying is characterized by hitting, kicking, punching, tripping, pushing, destruction of others property, and spitting (Slonje & Smith, 2008). Relational or Social bullying can include purposeful exclusion, spreading of rumors, and public embarrassment. Lastly, cyber bullying is similar to relational bullying but occurs through cell phones or the internet.(Jing & Iannotti, 2012). Along with the four types of bullying behaviors, bullying includes four types of individuals at school who are involved (Jing & Iannotti, 2012). A bully is one who engages in repetitive and intentional bullying behaviors. A victim is one who is the target of unpleasant and harmful bullying behaviors. Bully-victims are those who are both bullies and victims during the same time period in separate incidents. Finally, the non-involved students are those who are neither bullies nor victims but may have been a witness bystander or uninvolved completely.
Bullying is the most prevalent source of victimization in schools with more than seven million students aged 12 through 18 reported being bullied at school (DeVoe, Murphy, & National Center for Education Statistics, 2011). Due to current technological advancements, bullying has evolved and is now taking place at school and continues once students get home through the means of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube. The National Center for Educational Statistics (2011) estimates that nearly 1.5 million students also reported being cyber-bullied, a subtype of bullying. These numbers translate to roughly 30 percent of students reporting being a victim of bullying on school campuses and nearly 6 percent of students reporting being a victim of cyber-bullying in the United States of America. Although cyber-bullying is a growing issue in American schools, there is a limited amount of research on prevention and intervention of this type of bullying; therefore, this paper will focus on verbal, physical and relational bullying.
Demographics and Risk Factors
Research has allowed for practitioners and researchers to greater understand the individual characteristics of children and adolescents involved with bullying incidents. Males are more likely to be involved in bullying than females (Craig et al., 2009). Males are more likely to engage in physical bullying and females are...