Social Psychology of Education

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 181–197 | Cite as

How schoolchildren’s acceptance of self and others relate to their attitudes to victims of bullying

  • Ken Rigby
  • Giulio Bortolozzo


Previous research has indicated that harm to the mental health of children who are repeatedly victimised by their peers at school can be ameliorated through social or emotional support provided by other students. In this study we examined whether student provictim attitudes are related to more basic attitudes to self and attitudes to others. Measures of these attitudes were developed for use with children, and shown to be internally consistent and possess concurrent validity. Relations between these variables were then examined with a sample of Australian school children (\(N = 212\)) aged between 9 and 14 years. Provictim attitudes correlated significantly (\(r = .55\)) with acceptance of others, but not with acceptance of self (\(r = -.04\)). Controlling for age and gender, multiple regression analyses confirmed these findings. Attitudes to victims were less positive for older students (\(r = -.22\)). Gender differences, however, were not significant. These findings suggest that among schoolchildren self-acceptance is unrelated to positive attitudes towards victims, whereas acceptance of others has a moderately strong relation with provictim attitude. Implications for improving attitudes to victims among school children were examined.


Victimisation Bullying Violence Schools  Acceptance of self and others Provictim attitudes 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Education, Hawke Research InstituteUniversity of South AustraliaUnderdaleAustralia
  2. 2.South Australian Education DepartmentAdelaideAustralia

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