The characteristics of bullying victims in schools

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A summary of research into ‘The characteristics of bullying victims in schools’ has been published by the National Centre for Social Research. The full report will be published in January 2010.

The study uses information from the Longitudinal Study of Young People in England. The main findings are:

  • Reports of bullying were more prevalent in the younger age groups with almost half reporting being bullied at age 14 decreasing to 29 % by the age of 16
  • The most common types of bullying at all ages were in order of frequency:
    • name calling and cyberbullying (most common)
    • being threatened with violence
    • being socially excluded
    • being subjected to actual violence
    • being forced to hand over money or possessions  (least common)
  • The most frequent risk factors for being a victim for all age groups:
    • Having a special educational need
    • Having a caring responsibility
    • Having a disability
    • Having spent a period of time in social services care
  • Girls were more likely than boys to be bullied at age 14 and 15, this was less than a factor at age 16
  • Name calling and excluding from friendship groups were much more common between girls than boys
  • Boys were more likely to have their money or possessions taken, be threatened with violence or to be a victim of violence than girls
  • White young people were significantly more likely to report being bullied than ethnic minorities
  • Parents reporting bullying increased the likelihood of the bullying stopping
  • Young people who had been bullied at 14 or 15 had a significantly lower Key Stage 4 score than those who hadn’t been bullied