How Are Social Capital and Parental Mediation Associated with Cyberbullying and Cybervictimization Among Youth in the United States?

  • Johanna SamEmail author
  • Pamela Wisniewski
  • Heng Xu
  • Mary Beth Rosson
  • John M. Carroll
Conference paper
Part of the Communications in Computer and Information Science book series (CCIS, volume 714)


Introduction: Past evidence suggests parental mediation may influence their children’s online exchanges with others; for example, parental mediation of adolescents’ technology and internet use buffers against cyberbullying (Collier et al. 2016). Yet, no research has investigated how parental mediation and adolescents’ social capital relates to cyberbullying. The present study explores the associations between social capital and parental mediation with cyberbullying and cybervictimization. Methods: 215 adolescents (56% female) aged 13 to 17 in a parent-teen diary study were recruited across the United States via a Qualtrics panel. Two Hierarchical Linear Regression analyses were conducted with cyberbullying and cybervictimization as the outcome variables while taking into consideration sex, age, ethnicity (Block 1) and internet use (Block 2). Social capital variables were entered into Block 3 and parental mediation variables were entered into Block 4. Results: Both internet use and social capital positively predicted cyberbullying and cybervictimization (p < 0.05), suggesting trade-offs between frequency of internet use and the ability to bond with others online in direct relation to the risk of engaging in or exposing oneself to cyberbullying. As shown in Table 1, social bonding, internet use, and device use monitoring are significantly associated with cybervictimization (p < .05). Social bonding and online monitoring were significantly associated with cyberbullying (p < .05). Conclusions: Our research highlights the complex relationships between adolescent internet use, the benefits of engaging online with others, and the potential risks of cyberbullying. However, parental mediation linked to these cyber risks indicates that caregivers mediate when there are online concerns.
Table 1.

Summary of hierarchical multiple regression examining the influence of social capital and parental mediation on cyberbullying and cybervictimization.


Online aggression Adolescence Parental mediation Social capital 



This research was supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation under grant CNS-1018302. Part of the work of Heng Xu was done while working at the U.S. National Science Foundation. Any opinion, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. National Science Foundation.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Johanna Sam
    • 1
    Email author
  • Pamela Wisniewski
    • 2
  • Heng Xu
    • 3
  • Mary Beth Rosson
    • 3
  • John M. Carroll
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology and Special EducationVancouverCanada
  2. 2.College of Engineering and Computer ScienceOrlandoUSA
  3. 3.College of Information Sciences and TechnologyState CollegeUSA

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