Alexandria Digital Research Library

The use of latent analysis to further understand bullying, victimization, and moral disengagement

Stein, Rachel
Degree Supervisor:
Shane Jimerson
Place of Publication:
[Santa Barbara, Calif.]
University of California, Santa Barbara
Creation Date:
Issued Date:
Psychology, Education, and Mental health
Online resources and Dissertations, Academic
Degree Grantor:
University of California, Santa Barbara. Counseling, Clinical & School Psychology
Ph.D.--University of California, Santa Barbara, 2016

Even though bullying is a well-established concern within schools, there is little consensus about how to intervene (Jimerson, Swearer, & Espelage, 2010). Prior to implementing intervention schools need to understand students role in bullying (e.g., bully, victim, bully-victim, defender, outsider) to appropriately target the behaviors taking place. Despite an empirical history measuring students' roles within bullying (Espelage & Swearer, 2003; Salmivalli, 1996), as well as relevant correlates (e.g., gender, age), both the measurement and substantive implications of bullying participation have been debated. Some measurement methodologies (e.g., cut scores) used to create participation groups (Furlong, Sharkey, Felix, Tanigawa, & Greif Green, 2010; Swearer, Siebecker, Johnsen-Frerichs, & Wang, 2010) and have raised concerns about accurate group classification. To address concerns measuring bullying participation, the present study relied on latent class analysis. The findings show that bullying and victimization behaviors vary by degree of involvement (e.g., low, moderate, high). When bully and victim behaviors were considered in a simultaneous analysis, four classes emerged: outsiders, social-victims, victims, and bully-victims. Results suggest that most students who bully others also are victimized. The present study found that moral disengagement appears related to students' degree of participation in bullying and victimization. Students who fell into the bully-victim class had the highest levels of moral disengagement, followed by students in the victim class, social-victim class, and outsider class. Thus, programs focused on increasing moral engagement (e.g., moral reasoning) may provide a fruitful direction for anti-bullying efforts. Gender was not found to impact class assignment for the types of bullying participation measured.

Physical Description:
1 online resource (121 pages)
UCSB electronic theses and dissertations
Catalog System Number:
Inc.icon only.dark In Copyright
Copyright Holder:
Rachel Stein
File Description
Access: Public access
Stein_ucsb_0035D_12665.pdf pdf (Portable Document Format)