Document Type


Original Publication Date


Journal/Book/Conference Title

Psychology of Violence





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Includes supplemental material "Single- and multiple-item self-report measures of cyberbullying perpetration among adolescents".

Date of Submission

February 2015


Objective: This review focuses on the literature on cyberbullying among adolescents. Currently, there is no unified theoretical framework to move the field of cyberbullying forward. Due to some unique features of cyberbullying, researchers have generally assumed that it is distinct from aggression perpetrated in person. Many measures of cyberbullying have been developed based on this assumption rather than to test competing models and inform a theoretical framework for cyberbullying. Approach: We review current theory and research on cyberbullying within the context of the broader literature on aggression to explore the usefulness of the assumption that cyberbullying represents a distinct form of aggression. Associations between cyberbullying and general forms of aggression and psychosocial predictors of cyberbullying are discussed. Conclusions: Based on the empirical research, we suggest that the media through which aggression is perpetrated may be best conceptualized as a new dimension on which aggression can be classified, rather than cyberbullying as a distinct counterpart to existing forms of aggression. Research on cyberbullying should be considered within the context of theoretical and empirical knowledge of aggression in adolescence. Using this approach will create a theoretical framework for understanding cyberbullying, focus future research, and guide prevention efforts.


Copyright © American Psychological Association. This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Psychology of Violence, Vol. 4, No. 4, pp. 399–415. The final publication is available at This article may not exactly replicate the final version published in the APA journal. It is not the copy of record.

Is Part Of

VCU Psychology Publications

Online Table Supplement (Cyberbullying Among Adolescents - Measures in Search of a Construct).pdf (258 kB)
Single- and multiple-item self-report measures of cyberbullying perpetration among adolescents

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Psychology Commons