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Measuring peer victimization and school leadership: A study of definitions, measurement methods and associations with psychosomatic health
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Health Sciences. (Centrum för forskning om barns och ungdomars psykiska hälsa)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4364-6966
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Att mäta mobbning och skolledarskap : en studie om definitioner, mätmetoder och samband med psykosomatisk hälsa (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

The aim of this thesis is to explore methods for assessing peer victimization and pedagogical leadership in school.

The thesis includes four studies. Study I and II are based on web-based questionnaires among 2, 568 students in grades 7, 8 and 9. Study III is based on a questionnaire (n=128) and four focus group interviews (n=21) among students in grades 7 and 9. Study IV is based on a web-based questionnaire including 344 teachers.

The results from Study I showed that among students who experienced peer victimization 13% were captured by a bullying measure, 44% by a measure of repeated peer aggression, and 43% by both measures, i.e. the two measures captured partly different pupils. Study II showed that the two measures captured the same proportion of adolescents with psychosomatic problems and showed no significant differences in mean values on the Psychosomatic Problems (PSP) scale. In Study III it was shown that besides the traditional criteria the adolescents definition of bullying also included a criterion based on the health consequences of bullying. That is, a single but hurtful or harmful incident could also be considered bullying irrespective of whether the traditional criteria were fulfilled or not. The Rasch analysis in Study IV indicated two sub dimensions of the Pedagogical and Social Climate (PESOC-PLP) scale; direct pedagogical leadership and indirect pedagogical leadership. Satisfying psychometric properties indicated that the PESOC-PLP scale could be used to measure pedagogical leadership of the principal.

This thesis highlights problems with how bullying and school leadership is currently defined and measured. By strengthening the understanding of measurement methods of peer victimization and school leadership the aim is that the results from this thesis will contribute in providing a safe and positive school experience for children and adolescence and that it can be used as a valuable tool to combat peer victimization.

Abstract [en]

Baksidestext:

The negative consequences of peer victimization on children and adolescents such as worsening academic achievement and mental ill health are major public health concerns which have been subjected to extensive research. However, there are long-standing concerns how to define, measure, and estimate prevalence rates of peer victimization and successful school leadership. The aim of this thesis is to study methods for assessing peer victimization and pedagogical leadership in school. The results show that excluding other forms of peer victimization than bullying have serious implications for the identification of victims and may underestimate the full impact of peer victimization on children. Further, the validation of the Pedagogical and Social Climate (PESOC-PLP) scale is a step towards ensuring valid assessments of pedagogical school leadership. By strengthening the understanding of measurement methods of peer victimization and school leadership the aim is that the results from this thesis will contribute in providing a safe and positive school experience for children and adolescence and that it can be used as a valuable tool to combat peer victimization.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2015. , 110 p.
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 2015:15
Keyword [en]
Bullying, measurement methods, pedagogical leadership, psychosomatic health, Rasch analysis
Keyword [sv]
Mobbning, mätmetoder, pedagogiskt ledarskap, psykosomatisk hälsa, Rasch analys
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Public Health Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-35192ISBN: 978-91-7063-626-4 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-35192DiVA: diva2:787699
Public defence
2015-03-27, Nyquistsalen (9C203), Universitetsgatan 2, Karlstad, 09:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2015-03-10 Created: 2015-02-11 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Self-reported peer victimization: Concordance and discordance between measures of bullying and peer aggresion among Swedish adolescents
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Self-reported peer victimization: Concordance and discordance between measures of bullying and peer aggresion among Swedish adolescents
2013 (English)In: Journal of School Violence, ISSN 1538-8220, E-ISSN 1538-8239, Vol. 12, no 4, 395-413 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The current study examined concordance and discordance

between a measure of bullying and measures of peer aggression

with respect to the number of students identified as victims.

Swedish adolescents (N

= 1,760) completed a web-based questionnaire.

A measure of bullying and measures of peer aggression

were compared in order to elucidate the unique contribution of

each measure as well as the overlap: 13% of students who experienced

peer victimization reported only bullying, 44% reported only

repeated peer aggression, and 43% reported both. Concordance

was further elucidated by phi-square coefficient tests revealing that

18% of the variance in either measure was accounted for by the

other measure. Given recent research showing similar associations

with mental health for bullying and peer aggression victimization,

it is suggested that questions about peer aggression as well

as bullying should be used simultaneously in order to capture the

prevalence and full magnitude of peer victimization.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2013
Keyword
adolescents, bullying, measurement methods, peer aggression, peer victimization
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Public Health Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-28995 (URN)10.1080/15388220.2013.825626 (DOI)
Projects
Skolan förebygger
Available from: 2013-09-11 Created: 2013-09-11 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
2. Does the Strength of the Association Between Peer Victimization and Psychosomatic Health Problems Depend on Whether Bullying or Peer Aggression is Measured?
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Does the Strength of the Association Between Peer Victimization and Psychosomatic Health Problems Depend on Whether Bullying or Peer Aggression is Measured?
2017 (English)In: Child Indicators Research, ISSN 1874-897X, E-ISSN 1874-8988, Vol. 10, no 2, 447-459 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study aimed to analyze to what extent the strength of the previously established association between peer victimization and psychosomatic problems depends on which of two measures is being used, a measure of bullying and a measure of peer aggression. The study included 2568 Swedish adolescents aged 13–15 years. An Ordinary Least Square regression showed that all regressors representing bullying and peer aggression revealed significant effects on psychosomatic health using no peer victimization as the reference category. An ANOVA showed no significant differences in mean values on the Psychosomatic Problems Scale captured by the two measures. Given that both measures of peer victimization show strong associations with psychosomatic health, using only one of the two measures is therefore likely not just to underestimate the overall prevalence of peer victimization but also the number of children experiencing psychosomatic problems in relation with peer victimization.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Netherlands, 2017
Keyword
Adolescents, bullying, peer aggression, peer victimization, psychosomatic problems
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Public Health Science; Samhällskunskap
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-35275 (URN)10.1007/s12187-016-9390-2 (DOI)
Funder
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and WelfarePublic Health Agency of Sweden
Available from: 2015-02-25 Created: 2015-02-25 Last updated: 2017-06-01Bibliographically approved
3. Understanding and defining bullying - adolescents' own views
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Understanding and defining bullying - adolescents' own views
2015 (English)In: Archives of Public Health, ISSN 0778-7367, E-ISSN 2049-3258, Vol. 73, no 4Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background

The negative consequences of peer-victimization on children and adolescents are major public health concerns which have been subjected to extensive research. Given all efforts made to analyze and estimate the social and health consequences of peer-victimization, the adolescents' own experiences and understandings have had surprisingly little impact on the definition of bullying. Therefore, the aim of the current study is to explore adolescents' definitions of bullying.

Methods

A questionnaire study (n = 128) and four focus group interviews (n = 21) were conducted among students aged 13 and 15. First, gender and age differences were analyzed with respect to what behaviors are considered bullying (questionnaire data). Second, analysis of what bullying is (focus group interviews) was conducted using qualitative content analysis.

Results

The adolescents own understanding and definition of bullying didn't just include the traditional criteria of repetition and power imbalance, but also a criterion based on the health consequences of bullying. The results showed that a single but hurtful or harmful incident also could be considered bullying irrespective of whether the traditional criteria were fulfilled or not. Further, girls and older students had a more inclusive view of bullying and reported more types of behaviors as bullying compared to boys and younger students.

Conclusions

The results of the current study adds to the existing literature by showing that adolescents consider the victim's experience of hurt and harm as a criterion for defining bullying and not only as consequences of bullying. This may be of special relevance for the identification and classification of bullying incidents on the internet where devastating consequences have been reported from single incidents and the use of the traditional criteria of intent, repetition and power imbalance may not be as relevant as for traditional bullying. It implies that the traditional criteria included in most definitions of bullying may not fully reflect adolescents' understanding and definition of bullying. Assessments of bullying behaviors that ask adolescents to strictly adhere to the traditional definition of bullying might not identify all adolescents experiencing peer victimization and therefore not provide estimates of prevalence rates reflecting adolescents' own understanding of bullying.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BioMed Central, 2015
Keyword
Adolescents, Bullying, Definition, Qualitative content analysis
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Public Health Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-35108 (URN)10.1186/2049-3258-73-4 (DOI)000210223000001 ()25973194 (Scopus ID)
Funder
Swedish National Institute of Public HealthForte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare
Note

Publication date: 2 February 2015. (Fully formatted PDF and full text (HTML) versions will be made available soon)

Available from: 2015-02-02 Created: 2015-02-02 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
4. Psychometric properties of the PESOC-PLP scale, a Swedish teacher instrument measuring pedagogical leadership: A Rasch analysis
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Psychometric properties of the PESOC-PLP scale, a Swedish teacher instrument measuring pedagogical leadership: A Rasch analysis
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Public Health Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-35277 (URN)
Available from: 2015-02-25 Created: 2015-02-25 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved

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