Analyzing Patterns Within Academic and Legal Definitions: a Qualitative Content Analysis of the Term "Cyberbullying" Page: 34
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2.2.8 Effects on Students
Online bullying will have offline effects on students. What effects and to what extent
are the focus of several studies. Notably, Hinduja and Patchin, co-directors of the
Cyberbully Research Center in the United States, explored the issue in several studies. In
their 2007 study, several delinquent activities were associated with victims of
cyberbullying. These activities ranged from drinking alcohol, skipping school, cheating, to
running away from home and carrying a weapon. While there is not a direct causal
relationship among these occurrences, the correlation of victimization to offline deviant
behavior is worth noting (Hinduja & Patchin, 2007). Another study by Patchin and Hinjuda
(2011) again used General Strain Theory (GST) to examine the effects of bullying.
According to the authors, "GST argues that individuals who experience strain, and as a
result of that strain feel angry or frustrated, are more at risk to engage in criminal or
deviant behavior" (p. 728). This study, however, identified strain as a predictor for
bullying behavior. The results suggested that the more strain a student felt, the more likely
they were to be involved in cyberbullying. Combining these two studies, we see evidence
of a vicious cycle in which students who feel strain might bully, and those who are bullied
also feel strained. This may account for overlap between victims and bullies seen in other
Beran and Li (2007) examined both the frequency of abuse and its correlation to its
perceived effects on students. They surveyed a group of middle school students and found
that students who were cyberbullied perceived that they missed school more often, had
lower grades and had more difficulty concentrating has a result of the abuse. While this
data was not compared with grades or attendance reports to ensure validity, it is important
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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/m1/35/: accessed January 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .