- Associations of peer acceptance and perceived popularity with bullying and victimization in early adolescence
- The Journal of Early Adolescence
- Volume | Issue number
- 30 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Research Institute of Child Development and Education (RICDE)
This study examined the role of peer acceptance and perceived popularity in bullying and victimization in early adolescent peer groups. Peer acceptance is the degree to which adolescents are well liked by their peers; perceived popularity indicates visibility, dominance, and prestige. It was hypothesized that acceptance negatively predicts bullying, whereas popularity positively predicts bullying, and that both acceptance and popularity negatively predict victimization. Interactions between acceptance and popularity were tested as well. Participants were 1,207 13- to 14-year-old adolescents who completed sociometric assessments in their classrooms. Both bullying and victimization were predicted by the interaction between acceptance and perceived popularity. Bullying was positively associated with popularity, and this association was stronger for adolescents with lower levels of acceptance. Victimization was negatively associated with popularity, and this association was also stronger for adolescents with lower levels of acceptance. Linear and curvilinear main effects and interactions were found; some were further moderated by gender. The discussion focused on the role of individual status and group dynamic factors in the occurrence of aggression among early adolescents.
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