The Nature of Bullying in South Korean Schools

Koo, Hyojin. 2005. The Nature of Bullying in South Korean Schools. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

Text (The nature of bullying in South Korean schools)
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Abstract or Description

The aims of this present research are to expand our general understanding of bullying behaviour and to advance our knowledge about bullying among Korean pupils. With the purpose of exploring the nature and features of Korean bullying several studies were carried out, including one nationwide survey.

At the beginning of this research, a sample (N=160) of Korean middle school pupils was selected in order to define the most appropriate term for bullying. The results confirmed that wang-ta is the most appropriate term for Korean bullying which can equivalently used for bullying in English speaking nations. With the term selected and two pilot studies a large-scale study (N=2,926) was carried out. The results showed that 5.80/0 of Korean pupils suffered by being bullied whereas 10.2%) pupils reported that they bully other peers.

Results from the previous two studies indicated that there are different stages of victimisation in Korean schools. To investigate the stages of victimisation, 424 Korean pupils were selected. The results confirmed that there are different levels of victimisation and each level is named differently according to the level of victimisation. Moreover, in order to explore different stages of wang-ta, and study features of Korean bullying, 10 pupils, who quit school mainly due to being bullied, were interviewed. The participants well described the relationship between those three terms and their victimisation and a pattern of victimisation has been found.

Information and knowledge concerning the nature and features of wang-ta can be useful to correctional practitioners and policy makers as well as important to conduct comparative studies. Moreover, features of Korean bullying can help practitioners in order to better help victims in schools.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Identification Number (DOI):


bullying, schools, victimisation, wang-ta, South Korea

Departments, Centres and Research Units:



October 2005

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

22 May 2020 13:46

Last Modified:

08 Sep 2022 14:23


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