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Gepubliceerd in: Journal of Youth and Adolescence 6/2008

01-07-2008 | Empirical Research

Relational Aggression at School: Associations with School Safety and Social Climate

Auteurs: Sara E. Goldstein, Amy Young, Carol Boyd

Gepubliceerd in: Journal of Youth and Adolescence | Uitgave 6/2008

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Abstract

The present study examines how exposure to relational aggression at school is associated with adolescents’ perceptions of, and participation in, a hostile school environment. Participants were 1,335 African American and European American adolescents in grades 7 through 12 (52% female, 49% African American). Results indicate that exposure to relational aggression is associated with several components of adolescents’ perceptions of the school climate. Adolescents exposed to high levels of relational aggression perceived their school to be less safe, and were less pleased with the general social atmosphere at school. Moreover, for males, but not females, exposure to relational aggression was associated with carrying a weapon to school. Implications and suggestions for future research are discussed in terms of working toward safer school environments for adolescents.
Voetnoten
1
There has been much debate as to whether to refer to socially manipulate, interpersonally harmful behavior as relational aggression (Crick 1995; Crick and Grotpeter 1995), indirect aggression (Björkqvist 1994; Lagerspetz et al. 1988) or social aggression (Cairns et al. 1989; Galen and Underwood 1997). Although the definitions of each of these behaviors do vary (e.g., indirect aggression pertains to aggression where the perpetrator remains anonymous, however in the cases of relational and social aggression the perpetrator can be either known or unknown), in practice the measurement of these constructs typically focuses on very similar socially manipulate behaviors. The term relational aggression is used in the present manuscript, because as the construct was measured the aggressor’s identity was not necessarily anonymous (as is the case for indirect aggression) and because there was no measure of subtle facial cues or gestures (which are a key part in the definition of social aggression). These issues are discussed in greater detail in Archer (2001), Björkqvist (2001) and Underwood et al. (2001a, b).
 
2
In the present manuscript physical and direct verbal aggressive behaviors are referred to as overt aggression. This term was selected so that these behaviors could be directly contrasted with the relationship-focused harm inflicted by relational aggression. It is recognized that other terms may have also been appropriate, such as physical/verbal aggression.
 
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Metagegevens
Titel
Relational Aggression at School: Associations with School Safety and Social Climate
Auteurs
Sara E. Goldstein
Amy Young
Carol Boyd
Publicatiedatum
01-07-2008
Uitgeverij
Springer US
Gepubliceerd in
Journal of Youth and Adolescence / Uitgave 6/2008
Print ISSN: 0047-2891
Elektronisch ISSN: 1573-6601
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-007-9192-4