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Development and Validation of an Instrument to Assess the Impact of Cyberbullying: The Cybervictimization Emotional Impact Scale

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Abstract

Cyberbullying is a phenomenon with important adverse consequences on victims. The emotional impact of this phenomenon has been well established. However, there is to date no instrument with good psychometric properties tested to assess such impact. The objective of this study was developing and testing the psychometric properties of an instrument to assess the emotional impact of cyberbullying: the "Cybervictimization Emotional Impact Scale, CVEIS." The sample included 1,016 Compulsory Secondary Education students (52.9 percent female) aged between 12 and 18 (M = 13.86, DT = 1.33) from three schools in southern Spain. The study used Confirmatory Factor Analyses to test the structure of the questionnaire and robustness of the scale. Internal consistency was also tested. The results supported the suitability of a three-factor model: active, depressed, and annoyed. This model showed an optimal adjustment, which was better than its competing models. It also demonstrated strong invariance among cybervictims and non-cybervictims and also among gender. The internal consistency of each factor, and the total scale, was also appropriate. The article concludes by discussing research and practical implications of the scale.

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... The Cyberbullying Victimization Emotional Impact Scale (CVEIS; Elipe et al., 2017) was used to assess the emotional impact of experiencing victimization. The scale comprises 18 items distributed across three factors: (a) active impact, six items (e.g., energetic, lively; determined, daring; active, alert), α = .91; ...
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Introduction A relationship between homophobic verbal and bullying victimization has been established in the scientific literature, yet its findings remain debated. Similarly, the emotional impact of these phenomena may cross over, although not enough evidence is available to confirm this hypothesis. The study sought to examine this overlap of phenomena as well as their emotional impact, both independently and jointly, in a community-based school sample of adolescents with varying sexual orientations. Methods A total of 2089 Spanish students aged 11 to 18 years (M = 13.68, SD = 1.31) completed self-report measures assessing homophobic verbal and bullying victimization, sexual orientation, and emotional impact during 2017. Results Lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) adolescents reported greater homophobic verbal and bullying victimization than their non-LGB peers. No differences were found in emotional impact based on sexual orientation or gender. However, differences were found for victimization type, with LGB youth overrepresented in the poly-victim group. A mediation effect of homophobic verbal victimization was observed between bullying victimization and negative emotional impact. Conclusions LGB students more frequently experience more types of victimization than their non-LGB peers. Homophobic victimization amplifies the likely emotional impact of bullying victimization, which should be considered in prevention programs and psychological interventions. Policy Implications These findings highlight the importance of sexual diversity in the study of bullying behavior. It is also identified as a key area when developing prevention programs aimed at eradicating this type of violence from our schools.
... Survey-based methods have been used to examine the definitional criteria of cyberbullying (Fern andez-Antelo & Cuadrado-Gordillo, 2018;Hutson, 2016;Mehari et al., 2014), the psychometric properties of existing measurement tools (Berne et al., 2013;Buelga et al., 2020;Elipe et al., 2017;Palladino et al., 2015), prevalence rates (Brochado et al., 2017;Wang et al., 2019), risk and protective factors (Gül et al., 2019;Kowalski et al., 2019;Zych et al., 2019), and the psychosocial correlates of cyberbullying (Fahy et al., 2016;Garaigordobil & Machimbarrena, 2019;Kowalski & Limber, 2013;Navarro et al., 2015). This information has set the foundation for the inquiry of more complex research questions that are related to mitigating the impact of cyberbullying (Ansary, 2020). ...
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The investigation of bystander behavior in response to cyberbullying is a developing area of research that is still in its infancy. To advance this area of inquiry, researchers can use information and communication technology (ICT) platforms, such as simulated social media websites, as an experimental paradigm to facilitate and measure the behavior change of cyber-bystanders in a controlled virtual environment. However, this is a method that remains under-utilized by researchers and it remains unclear why. Thus, the purpose of this paper is to use an informed and empirical framework to systematically identify the methodological shortcomings that contribute to the underutilization of ICT platforms in cyber-bystander research. The final section of the paper builds on these 5 principles by critically analyzing the unique features of ICT platforms to outline ways in which researchers can design paradigms that are informed by both theory and practice. Overall, this paper aims to further develop the types of experimental methods that are used in the field of cyberbullying to create new avenues of research.
... To examine the emotional impact of sexting, an adaptation of the Cybervictimization Emotional Impact Scale, namely the CVEIS (Elipe et al., 2017) was used. Just following the four sexting items, a filter question was asked, and those who said to have sent, received, or forwarded videos, photos, or messages of an erotic-sexual nature were required to fill in the current questionnaire. ...
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Sexting refers to the exchange of sexual content material via technological devices. The definitions of this phenomenon vary greatly, mainly, depending on the types of sexting: primary and secondary. Besides the above, there is no common perspective on whether sexting is a risk behavior that entails some type of impact by itself or not and, in such a case, whether this impact varies according to gender. In addition, the need to be popular has shown to be a factor that could increase the probability of being involved in sexting. The present study analyses the potential emotional impact of sexting as well as the effect of the need for popularity on this phenomenon and if it varies according to the gender. The sample comprised 2356 high school students (46.8% female, 53.2% male; age range 11 to 18 years old, M = 13.72; SD = 1.31) belonging to 12 compulsory secondary education (ESO) schools from the South of Spain. To assess sexting implication four questions were presented to participants (sending, receiving, forwarding and receiving sexts via intermediary). Scales, self-report, about emotional impact (depressed, annoyed and active) and need for popularity were also applied. The results obtained show that, although sexting has a clear emotional impact on adolescents, it does not appear to generate a negative impact among those involved, at least in the short-term. Concretely, this phenomenon seems to trigger emotions related to activation in boys and girls (I feel lively, energetic, satisfied, ready, determined, active). Additionally, with respect to the need for popularity, its relevance, specially, in relation to active emotional impact has been confirmed by the analyses. Statistical models found for boys and girls were similar. In addition, some differences in emotional impact by gender were found, girls feeling more depressed and annoyed in secondary sexting, and boys more active regarding both types of sexting.
... In previous studies of cyberbullying, researchers have tended to focus on its prevalence, influential factors, and psychological impact on victims (Elipe et al., 2017;Lee and Shin, 2017;Schenk and Fremouw, 2012;Wright, 2018;Yang et al., 2018). However, it has also been found that the experience of cyberbullying can have serious psychological effects for bullies, such as sleeping difficulties, depression, suicide, and substance abuse (Donoghue and Meltzer, 2018;Reed et al., 2015;Rodelli et al., 2018;Selkie et al., 2015). ...
Article
Background: Cyberbullying is a serious social issue that can cause a number of psychological and behavioral problems for perpetrators and victims. Previous studies have shown that adolescent victims of cyberbullying are more likely to exhibit depressive symptoms. However, few studies have investigated the relationship between the perpetration of cyberbullying and depression, or the mediating and moderating mechanisms underlying this relationship. Methods: A questionnaire survey was conducted among 476 college students to investigate the relationships between cyberbullying perpetration and depression, the mediating role of social anxiety, and the moderating role of neuroticism. Results: The results showed that cyberbullying perpetration had a significant and positive predictive effect on depression. Social anxiety partially mediated this relationship. The direct predictive effect of cyberbullying perpetration on depression, and the relation between social anxiety and depression, were both moderated by neuroticism. Cyberbullying perpetration had a greater impact on depression for college students with lower levels of neuroticism and the predictive function of social anxiety on depression was stronger for individuals with low levels of neuroticism too. But neuroticism did not moderate the association between cyberbullying perpetration and social anxiety. Limitations: This study focused only on the individual variables influencing the relationship between cyberbullying perpetration and depression, and did not examine interpersonal or environmental variables. Also, the cross-sectional research design means that causality cannot be deduced from the results. Conclusions: Cyberbullying perpetration can predict depression directly, and also indirectly via the mediating role of social anxiety. Neuroticism moderates the relation both between cyberbullying and depression, and between social anxiety and depression. These findings provide new perspectives for the treatment and prevention of depression among college students.
... However, more research targeting the cyberbullies is needed to identify their symptom pro iles for screening purposes and for the more effective prevention of cyberbullying. Even the screening scales have focused on cybervictims, for example, The Cybervictimization Emotional Impact Scale which has been recently tested for its psychometric properties in Spain [95]. This scale yielded three factors including active, depressed and annoyed. ...
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Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) have generated new forms of communication. As in traditional communication scenarios, potentially harmful relational dynamics, such as intimidation and harassment between peers (cyberbullying), may develop in these scenarios. In addition, some of the characteristics of these new forms of communication may facilitate the establishment of these forms of aggression. This study analyzes the emotional perceptions of the pupils involved in cyberbullying via the Internet. Participants were 830 pupils from 10 secondary schools in Cordoba (Spain). The instrument used was “Cuestionario Cyberbullying” (Ortega, Calmaestra & Mora-Merchán, 2007). Results confirmed that, as in traditional bullying, bullies and victims show different emotional perceptions about the victim’s suffering. Data suggest that bullies and aggressive-victims may show an emotional perception deficit that could mean they are insensitive to the victim’s feelings.
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To explore the types, prevalence and associated variables of cyberbullying among students with intellectual and developmental disability attending special education settings. Students (n = 114) with intellectual and developmental disability who were between 12-19 years of age completed a questionnaire containing questions related to bullying and victimization via the internet and cellphones. Other questions concerned sociodemographic characteristics (IQ, age, gender, diagnosis), self-esteem and depressive feelings. Between 4-9% of students reported bullying or victimization of bullying at least once a week. Significant associations were found between cyberbullying and IQ, frequency of computer usage and self-esteem and depressive feelings. No associations were found between cyberbullying and age and gender. Cyberbullying is prevalent among students with intellectual and developmental disability in special education settings. Programmes should be developed to deal with this issue in which students, teachers and parents work together.
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Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) is widely used for examining hypothesized relations among ordinal variables (e.g., Likert-type items). A theoretically appropriate method fits the CFA model to polychoric correlations using either weighted least squares (WLS) or robust WLS. Importantly, this approach assumes that a continuous, normal latent process determines each observed variable. The extent to which violations of this assumption undermine CFA estimation is not well-known. In this article, the authors empirically study this issue using a computer simulation study. The results suggest that estimation of polychoric correlations is robust to modest violations of underlying normality. Further, WLS performed adequately only at the largest sample size but led to substantial estimation difficulties with smaller samples. Finally, robust WLS performed well across all conditions.
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The statistical tests used in the analysis of structural equation models with unobservable variables and measurement error are examined. A drawback of the commonly applied chi square test, in addition to the known problems related to sample size and power, is that it may indicate an increasing correspondence between the hypothesized model and the observed data as both the measurement properties and the relationship between constructs decline. Further, and contrary to common assertion, the risk of making a Type II error can be substantial even when the sample size is large. Moreover, the present testing methods are unable to assess a model's explanatory power. To overcome these problems, the authors develop and apply a testing system based on measures of shared variance within the structural model, measurement model, and overall model.
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Online social networking sites (SNS) are a ubiquitous platform for communication. However, SNS can provide opportunities for abuse and harassment, typically referred to as cyberbullying. The current study examined adolescent victims’ understanding of cyberbullying, the specific types of cyberbullying events experienced in SNS and the impact of these events. Twenty-five adolescents (15–24 years old) who responded to an invitation for participants with previous negative experiences in SNS took part in individual semi-structured interviews. Results showed that the basic criteria for the definition of cyberbullying published in previous research were either not referenced by participants, or they were more complex than initially anticipated. The most referenced criterion was the extent to which the experience had an impact on the victim, which is not a current definitional criterion. It was also found that 68% of victims reported experiencing a combined emotional, social and behavioural impact for each cyberbullying experience, and 12% reported no impact at all. These findings will contribute to the measurement of cyberbullying from the perspective of victims, and will also aid the development of intervention strategies based on the most common impact areas.
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Importance: Peer victimization is related to an increased chance of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among children and adolescents. OBJECTIVE To examine the relationship between peer victimization and suicidal ideation or suicide attempts using meta-analysis. DATA SOURCES Ovid MEDLINE, PsycINFO, and Web of Science were searched for articles from 1910 to 2013. The search terms were bully*, teas*, victim*, mobbing, ragging, and harassment in combination with the term suic*. Of the 491 studies identified, 34 reported on the relationship between peer victimization and suicidal ideation, with a total of 284,375 participants. Nine studies reported on the relationship between peer victimization and suicide attempts, with a total of 70,102 participants. STUDY SELECTION Studies were eligible for inclusion if they reported an effect size on the relationship between peer victimization and suicidal ideation or suicide attempt in children or adolescents. Data extraction and synthesis: Two observers independently coded the effect sizes from the articles. Data were pooled using a random effects model. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES This study focused on suicidal ideation and suicide attempts. Peer victimization was hypothesized to be related to suicidal ideation and suicide attempts. RESULTS Peer victimization was found to be related to both suicidal ideation (odds ratio, 2.23 [95% CI, 2.10-2.37]) and suicide attempts (2.55 [1.95 -3.34]) among children and adolescents. Analyses indicated that these results were not attributable to publication bias. Results were not moderated by sex, age, or study quality. Cyberbullying was more strongly related to suicidal ideation compared with traditional bullying. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE Peer victimization is a risk factor for child and adolescent suicidal ideation and attempts. Schools should use evidence-based practices to reduce bullying.
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This study focuses on the relationship between the concepts of cyberbullying/cybervictimization and loneliness. The subjects of the study were 389 secondary school students, of whom 159 were boys and 230 were girls, from various schools in the city of Trabzon. The study was carried out in the fall semester of the 2009–2010 academic year. The Loneliness Scale (UCLA) and the Cyberbullying Scale were used in the study. Correlation technique, multiple regression analysis and independent t test, were employed for statistical analysis. The study concluded that there was a significant correlation between becoming a cybervictim and loneliness among adolescents. Loneliness predicted by cybervictimization. These results were discussed and some conclusions were made.
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Cyberbullying is a new phenomenon that has received substantial attention via media. An extensive review of the literature revealed limited nursing research on this topic. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of cyberbullying on adolescents' physical (e.g., headache, stomachache, etc.) and psychosocial (e.g., self-esteem, depression, post traumatic stress syndrome, etc.) outcomes. Individuals who experience repeated traditional bullying are at increased risk for experiencing repeated incidents of cyberbullying. Research has shown that effects of cyberbullying may be more traumatic than traditional bullying because victims can be bullied 24 hours and 7 days a week, on and off school property. ^ A total of 367 adolescents aged 10 to 18 years of age (50.4% females and 49.6 males) in 4th through 12th grades participated in the study. A community-based approach was used to recruit students and collect data from charter schools, recreational centers, church youth groups, and a community organization. ^ Five instruments (The Student Survey; Inventory of Parent and Peer Attachment; Depression Self-rating Scale; Children's Somatization Inventory, and a short demographic survey) were used to collect data on the dependent and independent variables. Data analysis used the IBM-SPSS (ver. 19.0) and included chi-square tests for independence, Pearson product moment correlations, logistic regression, and stepwise multiple linear regression analysis. ^ Data analysis revealed that adolescents from urban and suburban areas are similar in their views of what constitutes cyberbullying and the emotions that are associated with cyberbullying. Adolescents are more likely to view cyberbullying activities more seriously if they are closely attached to their peers and parents. The results also revealed that adolescents may be less likely to report cyberbullying incidents. Physical and mental health did not appear to be problematic for these students. ^ Given the pervasiveness of cyberbullying among adolescents, nurses are in a key position to address cyberbullying through the use of primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention. Nurses have a complete understanding of important health issues related to bullying behaviors and receive training on how to deal with these behaviors. The paucity of research studies regarding cyberbullying and health outcomes support the need for additional exploration of this topic. ^
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We investigated the co-occurrence of traditional bullying, cyberbullying, traditional victimization, and cybervictimization, and analyzed whether students belonging to particular groups of bullies (e.g., traditional, cyber, or both), victims (e.g., traditional, cyber, or both), and bully-victims differed regarding adjustment. Seven hundred sixty-one adolescents (49% boys) aged 14–19 years (M = 15.6 years) were surveyed. More students than expected by chance were totally uninvolved, more students were traditional bully-victims, and more students were combined bully-victims (traditional and cyber). The highest risks for poor adjustment (high scores in reactive and instrumental aggression, depressive, and somatic symptoms) were observed in students who were identified as combined bully-victims (traditional and cyber). In addition gender differences were examined.
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The statistical tests used in the analysis of structural equation models with unobservable variables and measurement error are examined. A drawback of the commonly applied chi square test, in addition to the known problems related to sample size and power, is that it may indicate an increasing correspondence between the hypothesized model and the observed data as both the measurement properties and the relationship between constructs decline. Further, and contrary to common assertion, the risk of making a Type II error can be substantial even when the sample size is large. Moreover, the present testing methods are unable to assess a model's explanatory power. To overcome these problems, the authors develop and apply a testing system based on measures of shared variance within the structural model, measurement model, and overall model.
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Background. Research has shown that the specific emotional consequences of bullying for victims are different depending on the type of bullying that they experience and certain personal characteristics of the victims. Some victims are negatively affected, whereas others report indifference. The specific factors involved in these responses are not yet clear. Aims. The study analysed the emotional consequences of cyberbullying for victims. It examined the relationship between background variables (age and gender), victimisation variables (duration of aggression and victim role, victim vs. bully/victim), individual variables (peer self-esteem, perceived support of parents and friends, and coping strategies used) and the different profiles of emotional consequences. Sample. Participants were 1671 students (48.7% girls) aged 12 to 17 years from the 1st and 3rd year of Compulsory Secondary School and the 1st year of High School from schools in Córdoba (Spain). From this sample, 70 were identified as cyber mobile phone victims and 124 as cyber internet victims. Method. A self-report instrument, the DAPHNE Questionnaire (Genta et al., 2012), was used. The questionnaire pack included some pre-existing questionnaires and some new items on the key variables of interest, plus demographic information. Results. Variables that helped to predict the emotional consequences of cyberbullying for victims included: gender, peer self-esteem, parental support and loneliness with friends for cyberbullying via mobile phone and only peer self-esteem for cyberbullying via the internet. In addition, some coping strategies were different according to the emotional profile of the victim for both kinds of cyberbullying. Conclusions. Results suggest that the emotional impact of cyberbullying on the victim depends on some individual variables but also on the type of cyberbullying. The interpretation that a person makes about the cyberbullying that they experience may be important in determining the emotional consequences suffered. Further research is required to disentangle factors that could help pupils avoid the potentially negative emotional consequences of cyberbullying.
Article
In recent studies of the structure of affect, positive and negative affect have consistently emerged as two dominant and relatively independent dimensions. A number of mood scales have been created to measure these factors; however, many existing measures are inadequate, showing low reliability or poor convergent or discriminant validity. To fill the need for reliable and valid Positive Affect and Negative Affect scales that are also brief and easy to administer, we developed two 10-item mood scales that comprise the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS). The scales are shown to be highly internally consistent, largely uncorrelated, and stable at appropriate levels over a 2-month time period. Normative data and factorial and external evidence of convergent and discriminant validity for the scales are also presented. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
Mediator models were examined in which children's emotional reactions to peer aggression were hypothesized to mediate their selection of coping strategies and subsequent peer victimization and internalizing problems. Self-report data were collected from 145 ethnically diverse kindergarten through fifth grade children (66 females and 79 males) who attended a predominantly low- to middle-class school. Hypothetical scenarios were used to assess children's anticipated responses to peer aggression. Victims reported more intense negative emotions (e.g., fear and anger) than did nonvictims. Fear emerged as a predictor of advice seeking which, in turn, predicted conflict resolution and fewer internalizing problems. Conflict resolution was associated with reductions in victimization. Anger and embarrassment predicted revenge seeking which, in turn, was associated with increases in victimization. Additional pathways predicting changes in peer victimization across a single academic year as a function of children's emotional and coping responses to peer abuse are discussed.
Article
Past research has demonstrated the effects of bullying can be severe and long term for the individuals involved. The main aim of this study is to analyze the emotional impact on victims of traditional bullying, both direct and indirect forms, and of cyberbullying through mobile phones and the Internet. A sample of 5,862 adolescents from three different countries, Italy (N = 1,964), Spain (N = 1,671), and England (N = 2,227), responded to a questionnaire that asked if they had experience of various forms of bullying, and the consequent emotional impact. The results show that both traditional bullying and cyberbullying have a significant prevalence in the samples. Emotional responses are linked to types of bullying. Analysis of answers identified specific emotional profiles for the different types of bullying and cyberbullying. Direct bullying and cyberbullying via mobile phone showed similar profiles, and also indirect bullying and cyberbullying using the Internet. Similarities and differences between profiles are discussed and some hypotheses are presented to explain the results. In addition, school grade, gender, country, and severity of bullying episodes were related to the specific emotional profiles of each type of bullying.
Article
We reported our findings on the development and preliminary validation of a Spanish-language measure of positive and negative affect. Using confirmatory factor analytic techniques on data generated by 708 women in northern Spain, we obtained reasonable construct validity and reliability data for the measure. Consistent with past cross-cultural studies, a two-factor Positive Affect-Negative Affect (PA-NA)structure emerged, with PA and NA as relatively independent entities. The structure in this sample converged with that reported for a culturally separate group of participants. This factor structure has therefore revealed invariance across a number of cultural groups in Asia, Europe, and North America.
Article
Adolescents' access to and use of new media technology (e.g., cell phone, personal data assistant, computer for Internet access) are on the rise, and this explosion of technology brings with it potential benefits and risks. Attention is growing about the risk of adolescents to become victims of aggression perpetrated by peers with new technology. In September 2006, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention convened a panel of experts in technology and youth aggression to examine this specific risk. This special issue of the Journal of Adolescent Health presents the data and recommendations for future directions discussed at the meeting. The articles in the Journal support the argument that electronic aggression is an emerging public health problem in need of additional prevalence and etiological research to support the development and evaluation of effective prevention programs.
Article
Cyberbullying describes bullying using mobile phones and the internet. Most previous studies have focused on the prevalence of text message and email bullying. Two surveys with pupils aged 11-16 years: (1) 92 pupils from 14 schools, supplemented by focus groups; (2) 533 pupils from 5 schools, to assess the generalisability of findings from the first study, and investigate relationships of cyberbullying to general internet use. Both studies differentiated cyberbullying inside and outside of school, and 7 media of cyberbullying. Both studies found cyberbullying less frequent than traditional bullying, but appreciable, and reported more outside of school than inside. Phone call and text message bullying were most prevalent, with instant messaging bullying in the second study; their impact was perceived as comparable to traditional bullying. Mobile phone/video clip bullying, while rarer, was perceived to have more negative impact. Age and gender differences varied between the two studies. Study 1 found that most cyberbullying was done by one or a few students, usually from the same year group. It often just lasted about a week, but sometimes much longer. The second study found that being a cybervictim, but not a cyberbully, correlated with internet use; many cybervictims were traditional 'bully-victims'. Pupils recommended blocking/avoiding messages, and telling someone, as the best coping strategies; but many cybervictims had told nobody about it. Cyberbullying is an important new kind of bullying, with some different characteristics from traditional bullying. Much happens outside school. Implications for research and practical action are discussed.
Summary of our cyberbullying research
  • J W Patchin
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Patchin JW, Hinduja S. Summary of our cyberbullying research (2004-2016). Cyberbullying Research Center. https:// cyberbullying.org/summary-of-our-cyberbullying-research (accessed November 2016).
Stress and anxiety-application to health, community, work place and education
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Hunter SC, Boyle JME, Warden D. (2006) Emotion and coping in young victims of peer-aggression. In Buchwald P, ed. Stress and anxiety-application to health, community, work place and education. Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholar Press, pp. 307-324.
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