The effects of a cyberbully prevention program on middle school students' online behaviors and self-esteem

Date
2012-12
Authors
Carter, Jennifer L.
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Abstract

The purpose of the current study was to examine the effects of a cyberbully prevention curriculum on 168 sixth-grade students. The researcher randomly assigned students to treatment and control groups. The treatment group received 8 weeks of cyberbully prevention curriculum while participants in the control group remained in their regular health class. The researcher assessed all students in each group for cyberbullying/victimization behaviors as well as bystander behaviors using an adapted version of the Cyber Savvy Survey (Willard, 2011), a cyberbullying behavior survey that was administered at pretest, posttest, and a delayed posttest. The researcher also assessed self-esteem across the same time points using the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (Rosenberg, 1965). Analysis of the results included separate MANCOVAs for cyberbullying/victimization and bystander behaviors at posttest and delayed posttest, controlling for appropriate pretest scores. Additionally, the researcher used ANCOVAs to examine any change in self-esteem at posttest and delayed posttest, controlling for pretest self-esteem scores. Results were supported with qualitative responses offered by students to open-ended questions asked on the Adapted Cyber Savvy Survey. The results of the current study may have important implications for educational practitioners and directions for future research.

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Keywords
Communication and the arts, Middle school education, Multimedia communications, Social media, Social/emotional, Texting
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