Analyzing Patterns Within Academic and Legal Definitions: a Qualitative Content Analysis of the Term "Cyberbullying" Page: 29
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Age has been a major focus of exploration among many studies (Wade and Beran,
2011). Most research on cyberbullying as conducted with adolescent students between the
ages of 11-18. While there have been studies examining students outside of that age group,
they are a minority. Since cyberbullying is not restricted to a single age, it is often seen
across a wide range in students. From these studies come two major conclusions. First,
students in the 7th and 8th grade are among the most bullied online (Wade & Beran, 2011,
Williams & Guerra, 2007). Furthermore, Williams and Guerra (2007) suggest that rates are
highest among 8th grade students. Secondly, there is an inverse relationship among age and
occurrence, suggesting that as students age, their likelihood of being victimized lessens.
This has important implications for any study of cyberbullying. First, cyberbullying
research and programming can be focused on the age range in which it is most prevalent.
Secondly, if the abuse can be lessened during those years in which this behavior is highest,
then the duration and intensity of abuse may be lessened also, limiting psychological
damage for those students.
Many definitions on cyberbullying include a frequency piece. As above, some
definitions speak to the repetitive nature of the abuse. Many studies have touched on the
topic of frequency with regard to abuse (Vandebosch & Cleemput, 2007; Ybarra & Mitchell,
2007). Students in Vandebosch and Cleemput' s (2008) study provided insight with regards
to student perceptions of what constitutes bullying. They mentioned that "repetition" was a
key factor in defining cyberbullying; however, students also mentioned that it was possible
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Winn, Matthew R. Analyzing Patterns Within Academic and Legal Definitions: a Qualitative Content Analysis of the Term "Cyberbullying", dissertation, August 2013; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc283860/m1/30/: accessed March 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .