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I would tell my mum and dad - Cyberbullying amongst Swedish fourth graders and their suggested ways to stop it

Authors Sofia Berne
Kalle Nytell
Ann Frisén
Published in ADOLESCENTS AND SOCIAL MEDIA: GUIDELINES AND COPING STRATEGIES FOR CYBERBULLYING, COST IS0801 3rd Workshop, University of Turku, Department of Nursing Science, 13.05.2011
Publication year 2011
Published at Department of Psychology
Language en
Keywords Coping strategies, Cyberbullying
Subject categories Social Sciences, Psychology


Background: Most research on coping strategies against cyberbullying has been conducted on children aged 11 and upwards (e.g. Smith et al. 2008, Aricak et al. 2008). Few cybervictims “tells an adult” and their most common way to deal with it is to use “technical solutions” to protect themselves (e.g. Dehue et al. 2008, Smith et al. 2008). Purpose: The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of cyberbullying amongst Swedish fourth graders (10-years old) and their suggested strategies for coping with cyberbullying. Additionally it examines differences between the suggestions given by cybervictims and non cybervictims. Methods: One survey with 105 fourth graders from 7 schools. Results: The results show that 15, 2 % of the children reported being the target of cyberbullying on one or two occasion and 4, 8 % more often (two or three times per month or once per week). 72, 6 % of the cybervictims reported that they had “told an adult” about the event(s). The most often suggested strategy (61 % of all responses) was “telling an adult”. Cybervictims were less likely to suggest “telling an adult” compared to non cybervictims. 26, 3 % of the pupils recommended “confronting the bully”. Few children suggested “technical solutions” (5, 1 %). Conclusions: The results of this study indicate that cyberbullying does exist as early as in fourth grade. The most frequently suggested ways of stopping cyberbullying was “telling an adult” or “confronting the bully”. Cybervictims were less likely to suggest “telling an adult” compared to non victims. Only a few children suggested using “technical solutions”. Practical Implications: This study should promote further research to include this age group. The result that the most common ways of stopping cyberbullying was “telling an adult” point out that adults must know how and when to give help when asked

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