Understanding ecological factors associated with bullying across the elementary to middle school transition in the United States

Dorothy L. Espelage, Jun Sung Hong, Mrinalini A. Rao, Robert Thornberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examines sociodemographic characteristics and social-environmental factors associated with bullying during the elementary to middle school transition from a sample of 5th-grade students (n = 300) in 3 elementary schools at Time 1. Of these, 237 participated at Time 2 as 6th-grade students. Using cluster analyses, we found groups of students who reported no increase in bullying, some decrease in bullying, and some increase in bullying. Students who reported increases in bullying also reported decreases in school belongingness and teacher affiliation and increases in teacher dissatisfaction. Students who reported decreases in bullying also reported decreases in victimization. These findings suggest that changes across the transition in students' relations to school and their teachers are predictive of changes in bullying.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)470-487
Number of pages18
JournalViolence and Victims
Volume30
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Springer Publishing Company.

Keywords

  • Bullying
  • Cluster analysis
  • Early adolescence
  • Middle school
  • Transition

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