The Nature of Cyberbullying in Swedish Schools: Processes, Feelings of Remorse by Bullies, Impact on Victims and Age - and Gender Differences

Slonje, Robert. 2011. The Nature of Cyberbullying in Swedish Schools: Processes, Feelings of Remorse by Bullies, Impact on Victims and Age - and Gender Differences. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

Four studies were conducted to examine the nature of cyberbullying in Swedish schools using both qualitative and quantitative methods. The first two studies investigated what reasons/issues may be involved in the negative feelings that a victim of bullying may feel and how these related to different types of bullying. The content analysis yielded seven themes: helplessness, persistency, fright, anonymity, no avoidance, embarrassment and loneliness. Study Three used quantitative methods to examine various issues such as gender and age differences, but especially the distribution of the bullying material, the role of bystanders, and whether cyberbullies feel more or less remorse compared to traditional bullies. Findings showed that cyberbullies not only targeted their victims, but quite often showed the material to other people and/or uploaded it onto the Internet.

The bystanders of cyberbullying mostly did nothing further to distribute the material, however when they did, they tended to help the victim more often than bully him/her further. When asked about feelings of remorse, cyberbullies expressed less remorse than traditional bullies. The findings are discussed in relation to the
definition of bullying, and the need for empathy raising awareness for bullies within the cyberbullying context. Study Four, a qualitative study, involved 10 pupils and examined issues such as what the pupils had experienced (as victims, bullies or bystanders), how it felt (impact), and how it was resolved.

Practical implications of the findings include the highlighted need for different coping strategies to be applied for victims of cyberbullying and traditional bullying,
as well as starting preventive strategies for cyberbullying in pupils as young as 7 years. In addition, the need to investigate cyberbullying in a different manner than that of traditional bullying is raised. This could have practical implications for researchers, but is also a theoretical concern related to the definition of cyberbullying.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Departments, Centres and Research Units:



21 March 2011

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Date Deposited:

13 Feb 2012 16:43

Last Modified:

08 Sep 2022 08:29


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