Bullying in American Schools
A Social-Ecological Perspective on Prevention and Intervention
Edited by Dorothy L. Espelage, Susan M. Swearer
Routledge – 2003 – 472 pages
Much of our knowledge about bullying behaviors comes from research conducted over the past several decades in Europe, Australia, and Canada. Until the past decade, research in the United States has lagged behind our European, Australian, and Canadian counterparts. This book seeks to fill this void by forwarding research on bullying across contexts conducted with American participants. This book is an exciting compilation of research on bullying in school-aged youth conducted across the United States by a representative group of researchers, including developmental, social, counseling, school, and clinical psychologists. As such, it presents a picture of the complexity of bullying behaviors and offers suggestions for using data-based decision-making to intervene and reduce bullying behaviors in our nation's schools.
Given the complexity of bullying and victimization, this book gives guidance for schools as they develop prevention and intervention programming for bullying. Providing a source through which school administrators can utilize the research findings, the book is divided into five parts. Part I illustrates the importance of individual characteristics across bully-victim subtypes. Part II addresses how peer groups relate to bullying across the school years. Part III explores how teachers and classrooms influence bullying and aggression during the school years. Part IV implicates ecological systems in fostering and maintaining bullying in schools. It also highlights the potential for these systems to work in combating bullying. Part V focuses on specific aspects of prevention and intervention planning.
"This book is a compilation of research on bullying in school-aged youth conducted across the United States by a representative group of researchers, including developmental, social, counseling, school, and clinical psychologists. As such, it presents a picture of the complexity of bullying behaviors and offers suggestions for using data-based decision-making to intervene and reduce bullying behaviors in schools."
"…a well organized book that contains a solid research base on the complexities of bullying. It helps readers to understand that in order to change bully behaviors, one must target the entire system, not just the individual behavior. It provides valuable information to aid educator, administrators, parents, and psychologists, in making data-driven decisions to help schools choose, develop, and implement effective bullying prevention programs."
"Bullying in American Schools is an excellent resource for district level-administrators and school psychologists who want to address the challenging issue of bullying in their school districts. Any school district considering instituting a program to address bullying needs to have Espelage and Swearer's empirically based text as a resource to guide in the selection of a prevention and intervention program for bullying."
—Dr. Gena Barnhill, NCSP
Adjunct Professor, Avila University and William Jewell College
"Bullying in American Schools is an essential reference for school psychologists, district level administration, and anyone else who has an investment in the bullying issue. I do not know of any other resource that has integrated all the aspects of bullying with this level of U.S. research and references, as well as the history research base from other countries. I recommend this book for all school personnel who are interested in learning about the problem of bullying. It provides invaluable resources about the bullying research base. In addition, it provides information about the various bullying prevention programs and their efficacy."
—Avivah Dahbany, Ph.D.
Adjunct Professor, Montclair State University and Past President, New Jersey Sch
"Considering the aggressive and violent behaviors demonstrated within the school setting, Bullying in American Schools is a 'must have' for those educators and gatekeepers serious about making change."
—Kris Sieckert, Ed.S., NCSP, NASP
Chair, National Emergency Assistant Team, and President, Wisconsin School Psycho
"Espelage and Swearer have done an excellent job at putting together a remarkable book! It was difficult to put down at times and was a real eye opener to the broader picture on the issues. This book is much more than an academic exploration of the issues and research results. It is a call to action with practical prevention and intervention suggestions, which emerge from and are grounded in research. This is a book for anyone concerned about education and schools. If anyone is involved in making decisions about programming, based upon data, to address issues of prevention or intervention as it relates to bullying, this book is a must read. I recommend this book to fellow school psychologists, administrators, trainers, teachers, school resource officers, PTAs and school board members and anyone else interested in addressing the issues of violence and bullying in our schools and in our society."
—Steven Hardy-Braz, Psy.S., NCSP
President, North Carolina School Psychologists Association
"Bullying in American Schools is a must read for school psychologists, school/guidance counselors, and other professionals responsible for addressing the mental health needs of America's youth, as well as building and district level administrators who are responsible for creating and maintaining safe learning environments."
—Dr. George Csanyi, Ed.D.
President, Ohio School Psychologists Association Adjunct Faculty, The University
"The work's greatest strength is the thoroughness of the research that was done. The reference lists are extensive and go beyond bullying alone to important related issues such as depression and anxiety in children. The authors should also be commended for their systemic view of the problem that includes, not only school and classroom climate, but the family environment as well. The emphasis on using the information in each chapter to drive real world practice is one that will be welcomed by trainers and graduate students alike."
—Victoria Damiani, Ed.D., NCSP
President-Elect, Pennsylvania School Psychologists Association
"This book will make a wonderful reference for school psychologists across the country. Bullying has become a major focus in this field and there are not enough good resources out there. I would recommend this to be used in programming for students with bullying tendencies and as a tool for helping with prevention of bullying in schools."
—Bobbie Jo Braun Uglem
School Psychologist, Grand Forks Public Schools and President, North Dakota Scho
"The book is authoritative and well written. The editors have done a superb job of organizing the chapters, taking the reader through successively broader social-ecological systems examining bullying through individuals, peers, classrooms, and the home/school community. As a practitioner, I liked that each chapter had a firm theoretical and research grounding but that the focus of the book was on what could be done to reduce school bullying problems. The focus on intervention throughout the book makes it a good resource for a variety of school personnel."
—John E. Desrochers, Ph.D., ABPP
School Psychologist, New Canaan, Connecticut Public Schools; Adjunct Faculty, Fa
Contents: J. Garbarino, Foreword. S.M. Swearer, D.L. Espelage, Introduction: A Social-Ecological Framework of Bullying Among Youth. Part I:Individual Characteristics Associated With Bullying. D.L. Espelage, S.E. Mebane, S.M. Swearer, Gender Differences in Bullying: Moving Beyond Mean Level Differences. D.L. Espelage, S.E. Mebane, R.S. Adams, Empathy, Caring, and Bullying: Toward an Understanding of Complex Associations. S.M. Swearer, A.E. Grills, K.M. Haye, P.T. Cary, Internalizing Problems in Students Involved in Bullying and Victimization: Implications for Intervention. Part II:Peer Characteristics Associated With Bullying. P.C. Rodkin, Peer Ecologies of Aggression and Bullying. A.D. Pellegrini, J.D. Long, Part of the Solution and Part of the Problem: The Role of Peers in Bullying, Dominance, and Victimization During the Transition From Primary School Through Secondary School. Part III:Classroom Characteristics Associated With Bullying. M.K. Holt, M.A. Keyes, Teachers' Attitudes Toward Bullying. L.D. Hanish, B. Kochenderfer-Ladd, R.A. Fabes, C.L. Martin, D. Denning, Bullying Among Young Children: The Influence of Peers and Teachers. B. Doll, S. Song, E. Siemers, Classroom Ecologies That Support or Discourage Bullying. Part IV:Beyond the Classroom: Considering School Climate, Family Relationships, Social Support, and Innovative School Partnerships. S. Kasen, K. Berenson, P. Cohen, J.G. Johnson, The Effects of School Climate on Changes in Aggressive and Other Behaviors Related to Bullying. C.K. Malecki, M.K. Demaray, The Role of Social Support in the Lives of Bullies, Victims, and Bully-Victims. R.D. Duncan, Impact of Family Relationships on School Bullies and Their Victims. S.M. Sheridan, E.D. Warnes, S. Dowd, Home-School Collaboration and Bullying: An Ecological Approach to Increase Social Competence in Children and Youth. S.S. Leff, T.J. Power, A.B. Goldstein, Outcome Measures to Assess the Effectiveness of Bullying-Prevention Programs in the Schools. Part V:Effective Prevention and Intervention Programs. A.M. Horne, P. Orpinas, D. Newman-Carlson, C.L. Bartolomucci, Elementary School Bully Busters Program: Understanding Why Children Bully and What to Do About It. D.J. Whitaker, B. Rosenbluth, L.A. Valle, E. Sanchez, Expect Respect: A School-Based Intervention to Promote Awareness and Effective Responses to Bullying and Sex Harassment. S.P. Limber, Implementation of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in American Schools: Lessons Learned From the Field.