Bullying Essay | Bullying | Anxiety

Schools are places which offer more than just educational opportunities; they also offer many opportunities

for social relations for youth. These social opportunities also offer many opportunities for children to become bullies or victims of bullying. “Many children and young adults are bullies or victims of bullies, but the largest number of children and young adults are bystanders, i.e., witnesses to bullying.” In this essay, I will be using appropriate social psychological theories to explain the phenomenon of bullying and show why the majority of individuals remain bystanders to bullying. The first part of the essay looks at defining and identifying key aspects of bullying. It looks at the general occurrence of bullying and the researches that indicate the extent of bullying, it then dwells on the different types of bullying and how it can affect the individuals involved. The different characteristics and elements involved in bullying are treated to understand the phenomenon of bullying by looking at the different theories that could explain the bullying behaviour. The following part of the essay then focuses on bystanders and the reason why majority of the individuals remain bystanders to bullying.

Bullying in schools is a worldwide problem that can have negative consequences for the general school climate and for the right of students to learn in a safe environment without fear. Bullying can also have negative lifelong consequences--both for students who bully and for their victims. Humiliation, taunting, threats, teasing, hitting, stealing and social exclusion by classmates- these are common experiences encountered around the world in many schools. There has been a strong focus in the academic community regarding the need for a clear definition of the social occurrence of bullying, and the instruments used for measuring these types of behaviours. Bulling occurs when a person or group of people take advantage of the power they have to hurt or reject someone else. Bullies are youngsters who systematically victimize a target group of their peers. While there is information from varied samples on bullies and passive victims in school, we know little about aggressive victims. This group in many ways is the most vulnerable of all. (Pellegrini, A.D. 1998) According to Olweus, D. (1987, 1993), he defines being bullied or victimized as

this psychological stress can cause victims' bodies to be less resistant to disease and infection. bullies. or urban) do not seem to be individual factors in predicting the occurrence of bullying. Smith & Sharp. and witnesses. verbal abuse appears to remain constant. social. A. While direct physical assault seems to decrease with age. Whereas with indirect bullying. Bullying can cause negative academic.. who apt to utilize these more subtle indirect strategies. panic disorder. It is a form of aggressive behaviour which is hurtful and deliberate. These consequences can be short-term or long-term. sometimes continuing for weeks. it is often persistent. and decline during the high school years. and psychological consequences on victims. Also. Bullying behaviour can affect pupils in a number of ways. physical.” The general occurrence of bullying happens in venues where children are minimally supervised by adults such as the lunchrooms. racial composition. separation anxiety. and in the playground. such as spreading rumours and enforce social isolation (Smith & Sharp. and therefore they may get sick more often. such as depression. emotional. 1994). Direct bullying seems to increase through the primary school years. Finally. School size. Direct bullying frequently takes place in the playground where there is a high level of activity and limited adult supervision so detection of bullying is on a low. Schwarts et al. 1998). etc. and school setting (rural.the following: “A person is bullied when he or she is exposed repeatedly and over time to negative actions on the part of one or more other persons. hallways. peak in the middle school/junior high school years. during recess. (Pellegrini. boys engage in bullying behaviour and are victims of bullies more frequently than girls. Various reports and studies have established that the extent of bullying are approximately 7%-15% of school-age population that are either bullied regularly or are initiators of bullying behaviour (Olweus. suburban. months or years and it is difficult for those being bullied to defend themselves. cafeterias. 1993.D. 1994). which occurs more often in classroom than playground happens just to avoid detection by the teacher. on the school bus. Children who bully others also experience many short term and long term consequences of their . Bullying can also greatly affect the overall climate of a school.1997. Victims are more likely than bullies to suffer from anxiety disorders.

They are also five times more likely to be taken to criminal court and to be found guilty of a crime than are their peers who do not participate in bullying behaviour. whereas social cognitive theory hypothesizes that adolescents model their friends' behaviours. The two theories are not mutually exclusive. they may steal or vandalize property. especially those less powerful than themselves. The first theory is the dominance theory which deals with when individuals begin to assert themselves at the expense of others in order to establish their social power. . or use alcohol and other drugs. carry a weapon in order to scare others. including high sociometric status among peers. While they are still young. dominance theory suggests that aggression is associated with high sociometric status. including aggressive behaviours. skip school. They are more likely to get involved in other harmful activities.bullying behaviour. for instance by hitting out at others. become injured in a fight. whereas social cognitive theory suggests that aggression is associated with peers' aggressive behaviours. They tend at first to do so bluntly. However. Dominance theory hypothesizes that students use aggression against weaker students to gain access to resources. The phenomenon of bullying can thus be described using theoretical perspectives. in an attempt to intimidate them. There are two types of social psychological theories which explain the phenomenon of bulling. start or join in on physical fights. both as a child and as an adult.

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