Effects of group norms on children's intentions to bully

Drew Nesdale*, Kevin Durkin, Anne Maass, Jeff Kiesner, Judith A. Griffiths

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

50 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A minimal group study examined the effect of peer group norms on children's direct and indirect bullying intentions. Prior to an inter-group drawing competition, children (N = 85) aged seven and nine years were assigned to a group that had a norm of out-group dislike or out-group liking. Results indicated that, regardless of group norms, the children's attitudes were more positive towards the in-group vs. the out-group. Children's bullying intentions were greater when the in-group had a norm of out-group dislike vs. out-group liking, the children were younger rather than older, and the bullying was indirect vs. direct. A three-way interaction showed that the in-group norms had a larger effect on the younger children's direct rather than indirect bullying intentions, but a larger effect on the older children's indirect rather than direct bullying intentions. Implications for understanding school bullying intentions and behaviour are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)889-907
Number of pages19
JournalSocial Development
Volume17
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008
Externally publishedYes

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