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The Role of Community, Family, Peer, and School Factors in Group Bullying: Implications for School-Based Intervention

02 Jun 2015


Although an ecological perspective suggests the importance of multiple levels of intervention, most bullying research has emphasized individual- and school-focused strategies. This study investigated community and family factors that influence school efforts to reduce odds of group bullying behavior and victimization.


We used multilevel logistic regression to analyze data from the 2009 Youth in Iceland population school survey (N = 7084, response rate: 83.5%, 50.8% girls).


Parental support and time spent with parents were protective against group bullying behavior while worsening relationships with teachers and disliking school increased the likelihood of such behavior. Knowing kids in the area increased the likelihood of group bullying while intergenerational closure was a protective factor. Normlessness was consistently positively related to group bullying. We found no indication of higher-level relationships across the bullying models. Parental support was protective against victimization. Disliking school, intergenerational closure, and anomie/normlessness were strongly and negatively related to victimization. We found some indication of multilevel relationships for victimization.


Findings support efforts to increase family and community connection, closure, and support as a part of school-based intervention. These factors become more important as young people participate in or experience greater odds of group bullying behavior and victimization.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in Journal of School Health