In the wake of several recent bullying and student suicide incidents, including the alleged Rutgers University cyberbullying, researchers at the University of Arizona’s (UA) Frances McClelland Institute (FMI) have received two significant grants for bullying research.
“We are very excited about these grants,” said Noel Card, Ph.D., an associate professor and FMI’s Adolescence Initiative Chair. “There is a critical need for general research on child and adolescent aggression and victimization. Young people have many stressors, and when you throw social media in the mix … youth are faced with challenges and influences on levels that other generations never had to deal with.”
The research will be conducted on two main projects. The first — Who aggresses against whom, and how? Forms and functions of aggressor-victim relationships during early adolescence — is the first of its kind to integrate two lines of research, one focusing on different types of aggression and victimization, and the second focusing on aggressor-victim relationships. Outcomes will advance understanding of the various types of aggression in the contexts in which they occur. Funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, the initial research began in August 2010 and will conclude in July 2012.
For the second project, Card is partnering with Sheri Bauman, Ph.D., an associate professor and director of the UA College of Education’s School Counseling master’s degree program. Their research, funded by the National Science Foundation, on The emergence of cyberbullying from middle childhood through adolescence: A prospective longitudinal study — is the first research in the country to examine cyberbullying over time, and examine the influence of participating in young children’s social networking sites on later cyberbullying involvement. The research will look at both children’s and their parents’ use of various technologies. Understanding will enable the development of effective prevention and intervention programs.
Card received approximately $612,000 in grants for the two research projects. Once the research is complete, results from both projects will be made available to educators, the community and the public to educate and inform.
The Frances McClelland Institute serves as a catalyst for cross-disciplinary research on children, youth, and families at the University of Arizona. Its research initiatives address questions important to the development and well-being of contemporary children, youth, and families, with the goal of improving basic understanding to enhance the lives of the people of Arizona and the world.
Read more about Noel Card at http://cals.arizona.edu/fcs/faculty/noel_card