Patterns of Physical and Relational Aggression in a School-Based Sample of Boys and Girls

Department of Psychology, University of New Orleans, New Orleans, LA 70148, USA.
Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology (Impact Factor: 3.09). 12/2009; 38(4):433-45. DOI: 10.1007/s10802-009-9376-3
Source: PubMed


The current study investigated the patterns of aggressive behavior displayed in a sample of 282 students in the 4th through 7th grades (M age = 11.28; SD = 1.82). Using cluster analyses, two distinct patterns of physical aggression emerged for both boys and girls with one aggressive cluster showing mild levels of reactive aggression and one group showing high levels of both reactive and proactive aggression. Both aggressive clusters showed problems with anger dysregulation, impulsivity, thrill and adventure seeking, positive outcome expectancies for aggression, and higher rates of bullying. However, the combined cluster was most severe on all of these variables and only the combined aggressive group differed from non-aggressive students on their level of callous-unemotional traits. Similar patterns of findings emerged for relational aggression but only for girls.

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    • "De hecho, diferentes investigaciones señalan la tendencia en la percepción de niños y niñas de Primaria a identificar el acoso escolar con las formas directas de agresión y a obviar o no reconocer como tales, las formas de agresión indirecta (Naylor, Cowi, Cossin, de Bettencourt, & Lemme, 2006; Smith et al., 2002; Vaillancourt et al., 2008). Se confirma igualmente la tendencia a reconocer que son los varones los que más implicados están en formas de maltrato físico y directo, mientras ellas señalan más el maltrato de carácter relacional (Björkqvist et al., 1992; Card, Stucky, Sawalani, & Little, 2008; Crapanzano, Frick, & Terranova, 2010; Miller et al., 2009), favorecido por el hecho de que las chicas suelen manifestar mayor dominio de las habilidades sociales que los chicos de su misma edad (Postigo, González, Mateu, Ferrero, & Martorell, 2009). En cuanto a número se refiere, la violencia relacional suele estar asociada a grupos de agresores y dirigida a una sola víctima. "
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    ABSTRACT: This study analyzes children’s perceptions of bullying and its emotional effects on primary education students. A total of 276 students between the ages of six and 11 years (M = 8.53, SD = 1.62) from two public schools in Castilla-La Mancha were invited to express themselves by creating drawings of the bullying phenomenon. The results were analyzed based on descriptive statistics and interjudge analyses on categories and criteria that were present in the drawings. The results show that the cognitive representation of bullying among peers that the students display in their drawings fits the definition of bullying itself, in its basic characteristics and role distribution. The representations point out the phenomenon’s dyadic structure, basically made up of the same gender; with more males than females recognized as those involved. Sadness and generally negative emotions were identified in the victims. A moral disengagement was found in the aggressors. The results are discussed in relation to existing knowledge on the phenomenon that was obtained through psychometric procedures based on self-reports.
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    • "Within the delinquent group, proactive aggression was more related to an aggression bias, while reactive aggression related more to a tendency to interpret social ambiguousJ Child Adolesc Behav ISSN:JCALB, an open access journal JCALB, an open access journal Volume 2 @BULLET Issue 2 @BULLET 1000128 situations as negative. Earlier studies have demonstrated that especially proactive aggression relates to psychopathology464748. Therefore the delinquent group may constitute a more psychiatric group of delinquents in which proactive aggression is especially related to an aggressive interpretation bias. "

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    • "To review, the main aims of the present study are to explore whether proactively and reactively aggressive cluster profiles reported in Crapanzano et al. (2010) replicate in an Asian sample of older adolescents, as well as to provide descriptive profiles of perceived parental environment and behavioral and psychological adjustment consequences of membership in these cluster profiles. Specifically, we ask whether profiles with higher levels of combined RA and PA are characterized by perceptions of more harsh and punitive parenting as well as greater self-reported disturbances in emotional, social, and behavioral functioning, compared with other cluster profiles. "
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    ABSTRACT: The authors investigated the patterns of reactive and proactive aggression exhibited by young male (N = 604) and female (N = 544) adolescents in Singapore. Self-report measures of reactive and proactive aggression, behavioral and emotional adjustment, parenting styles, and delinquency were administered to students aged 13–14. Using cluster analysis, three distinct patterns of aggression emerged: a low aggressive group, a combined aggressive group with high reactive and proactive aggression, and a reactively aggressive group with low proactive and high reactive aggression. The two aggressive groups showed similar disturbances in adjustment and delinquency, but the combined group showed the greatest disruptions. Findings indicate cross-cultural stability of patterns of aggression as well as the usefulness of the reactive/proactive distinction in early identification of individuals with adjustment problems.
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