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04-09-2021 | Empirical Research | Uitgave 11/2021

Journal of Youth and Adolescence 11/2021

Reciprocal Links Between Teacher-Student Relationships and Peer Victimization: A Three-Wave Longitudinal Study in Early Adolescence

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Youth and Adolescence > Uitgave 11/2021
Auteurs:
Isabel M. ten Bokkel, Karine Verschueren, Karlien Demol, Fleur E. van Gils, Hilde Colpin
Belangrijke opmerkingen
Publisher’s note Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Abstract

Although teachers play a central role in tackling peer victimization at school, no study so far has investigated transactional associations between positive and negative teacher-student relationship dimensions and peer victimization in early adolescence. Investigating both dimensions simultaneously in upper elementary school allows to examine differential effects on peer victimization (and vice versa) and could aid tailored prevention and intervention efforts. At three time points within one school year, self-reported teacher-student closeness and conflict and self- and peer-reported peer victimization were assessed in a sample of 930 fourth to sixth grade students (Mage = 10.55 years, 53.1% girls). Cross-lagged models revealed negative within-time associations between closeness and self-reported peer victimization, and positive within-time associations between conflict and self-reported peer victimization at most time points. Whereas closeness and conflict negatively predicted each other across the school year, no bidirectional longitudinal effects were found between teacher-student relationships and peer victimization. The current findings highlight the need for early prevention and intervention efforts to tackle peer victimization, build positive teacher-student relationships, and especially reduce negative teacher-student relationships.

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