Investigating the Relationship between Cyberbullying and Perceived Family Support in Middle-School Students in Relation to Gender, Frequency of Internet Use, and Grade

Yigit M. F., Keskin S., YURDUGÜL H.

ADDICTA-THE TURKISH JOURNAL ON ADDICTIONS, vol.5, no.2, pp.249-284, 2018 (ESCI) identifier


Bullying is classified as physical, verbal, and indirect bullying. However, with technology becoming increasingly widespread in human life, the contexts of bullying have recently expanded with the emergence of cyberbullying. Family support, the most important resource of social support for young age groups in particular, is thought to be an important structure in preventing cyberbullying. This study investigates the relationship between perceived family support and cyberbullying, in addition to the levels of cyberbullying and perceived family support according to the demographic characteristics of gender, grade, and frequency of Internet use. The study group is composed of middle school students who are considered at high risk for being involved in cyberbullying. Descriptive and correlational research methods have been adopted in this study, with 223 students from the 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th grades of three different educational institutions participating in the study. Data have been collected using a personal information form, the Cyberbullying Scale, and the Perceived Social Support Scale. In examining the relationships between variables, the Spearman rank correlation coefficient has been used. In addition, the Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whitney U tests have been utilized for comparing average scores. Findings reveal that, regardless of students' gender, as the grade and frequency of Internet use increase, perceived family support decreases and cyberbullying behaviors increase. A moderate and negative correlation has also been determined to exist for students' cyberbullying levels with their perceived levels of family support.