Behaviour study picks on a global problem

18th April 2008 at 01:00
South Korean pupils are more likely to be punched, kicked or ignored by classmates than children in other countries. But Japanese pupils are most likely to be teased and name-called. And all pupils are equally likely to send each other bullying text messages, no matter where they come from.

Academics from the University of British Columbia, Canada, studied patterns of bullying among 1,398 pupils in Australia, Canada, Japan, South Korea and the United States.

They asked 11-year-olds whether they had been mean or negative to others in the past two months, and in what ways. They also asked whether they had been bullied by others, and if so, what form it took. The results show that children across the world are bullied in similar ways, but to different extents.

Children in all countries were likely to bully or be bullied via email or text message and were equally likely to push, hit and kick each other on purpose.

But differences arose in other areas. Japanese pupils were unlikely to push or hit each other jokingly, while this was relatively common among South Korean pupils who also tended to ignore others or spread rumours about them more often than children elsewhere.

South Korean pupils are also more likely than other children around the globe to have property stolen or vandalised.

The researchers say schemes designed to tackle bullying should be carefully modified to suit their target country. "These findings suggest considerable caution in understanding simple cross-national or cross-cultural comparisons across groups," the report said.

'Investigating the comparability of a self-report measure of childhood bullying across countries' by Chiaki Konishi et al.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now