Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 49, Issue 9, pp 3695–3703 | Cite as

Birth Cohort Effects, Regions Differences, and Gender Differences in Chinese College Students’ Aggression: A Review and Synthesis

  • Hao Lei
  • Choo Mui Cheong
  • Shunyu LiEmail author
  • Minghui Lu
Original Paper


This cross-temporal meta-analysis involved 86 studies (N = 71,397) on aggression among Chinese college students conducted from 2003 to 2017. We collected articles investigating college students’ aggression using the Aggression Questionnaire. The results showed that college students’ aggression generally decreased steadily over 15 years. Compared to 2003, aggression in 2017 decreased by 1.030 standard deviations. The decline in physical aggression, verbal aggression, and hostility among college students were more rapid than anger. College students from the Eastern region of China demonstrated this decline more than those from the Center and Western regions. Both male and female college students showed decreasing aggression, and the decline was larger in males compared to females.


Chinese college students Meta-analysis Magnitude of differences Aggression 



All authors read and approved this manuscript, all the authors of this article have no conflict of interest. This research was supported by the General Project for Educational Studies of Shanghai Planning of Philosophy and Social Science (A1709); Shanghai Pujiang Program (17PJC026).

Author Contributions

HL provided the idea, designed this study and wrote the manuscript, contributed to data collection. CMC was revised the language and revised the questions based on editor and reviews’ suggestions. SL contributed to provide the idea, design this study, analysis data and write the manuscript. ML was contributed the analysis data.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All the authors of this article have no conflict of interest

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of East China Normal University and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hao Lei
    • 1
  • Choo Mui Cheong
    • 2
  • Shunyu Li
    • 3
    Email author
  • Minghui Lu
    • 4
  1. 1.Institute of Curriculum and InstructionEast China Normal UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Faculty of EducationThe University of Hong KongHong KongHong Kong
  3. 3.Department of EducationXinjiang Normal UniversityWulumuqiPeople’s Republic of China
  4. 4.Special Education Department, School of Education, Bay Area Education Policy Institute for Social DevelopmentGuangzhou UniversityGuangzhouChina

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