A two way street: Prevalence of cyberbullying among middle school students
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
: 8:45 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.
Introduction: Cyberbullying is a type of bullying that occurs online or through cell phone text messages. The purpose of this study is to examine cyberbullying among middle school students. Method: As a supplement to the CDC's Youth Risk Behavior Survey in 2012, a probability sample (N = 1,186) of Los Angeles Unified School District middle school students was collected. Logistic regression analyses were conducted to assess predictors of victimization or perpetration. Results: 11% of youth surveyed were cyberbully victims and 10% were perpetrators. Victims had 10 times the odds of also being a perpetrator (95% CI= 6.2, 15.5). Facebook was the most common forum for victimization (47.7%) and perpetration (47.6%) followed by text messaging. 53.8% of perpetrators cyberbullied someone they knew in real life (IRL), and 26.4% of victims were cyberbullied by someone IRL. Multivariate logistic regressions showed that females and white youth were more likely to be victims of cyberbullying (OR: 2.1, p<0.01; OR: 1.9, p<0.05). The most significant predictor of cyberbully outcomes was engaging in bidirectional bullying: victims were much more likely to be perpetrators and perpetrators were much more likely to be victims (OR: 8.9, p<0.001; OR: 8.8, p<0.001). Conclusions: Cyberbullying is a prevalent issue among middle school aged youth; white and female adolescents are more likely to participate in cyberbullying. Results suggest that cyberbullying most commonly occurs as a bidirectional experience. Cyberbullying prevention programs at the middle school level should be gender appropriate and take into consideration that victims of cyberbullying are most likely also perpetrators.
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Administration, management, leadership
Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Social and behavioral sciences
Assess the prevalence of cyber bullying among middle school Los Angeles public school students
Identify the significant predictors of cyberbullying among middle school Los Angeles public school students
Compare results to previous literature on high school cyberbullying and traditional "offline" bullying
Keyword(s): School Health, Violence Prevention
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a second year doctoral student at USC School of Social work and have been working with Dr. Eric Rice on a NIMH funded grant regarding youth homelessness and social networks. I have over a year and a half experience as a research assistant.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines,
and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed
in my presentation.