Bullying: Incidence, Impact, and Interventions
Bullying is generally defined as repeated negative actions (i.e., physical, verbal, and/or psychological) directed at a target over time, where there is a power differential (either real or perceived) between the target and the bully/bullies (Olweus, 1993; Olweus, Limber, & Mihalic, 1999).
The widespread and chronic nature of bullying suggests that the impact on children both short and long-term can be considerable. Psychologists, given their skills and expertise in matters of human behavior, are uniquely qualified to work with school systems to implement research-based prevention programs, and with individual clients to address the adverse impact of bullying on both targets and bullies.
In this paper, I further describe the incidence of bullying, including gender differences, as well as characteristics of targets and bullies. Next, an outline of the short and long-term impact of bullying is provided. Finally, I discuss assessment issues, and effective interventions, both at the systems and individual levels. This article is intended to be an introduction to the subject with particular focus on issues of concern to psychologists. Therefore, many issues which could be discussed in much greater detail will only be briefly outlined with references to allow the reader to further explore a subject.
Copyright (c) 2013 Academic seminar "Media and Education", Department of Sociology, South-West University
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