Class Room Dynamics and Student Adjustment and Attitudes
Class Room Dynamics and Student Adjustment and Attitudes
Class Room Dynamics and Student Adjustment & Attitudes
Bullying is a social crime and should be prevented under any circumstances. However, the ground reality is that, bullying occurs across the world, at different ages and in different contexts. Bullying not only causes humiliation to an individual, but also has negative influences on his or her emotional stability. Bullying occurs on the basis of race, ethnicity, academic performance and other comparative factors which are manifested in individuals. Therefore, there has been a strong need across the world to prohibit bullying. Various laws and punishments are in place and has been formulated, but with very little effects. Therefore, it is up to the true conscience of human beings who witnesses bullying and stands up against it. A strong resistance against bullying is the major factor, which can inhibit or prevent the incidences of bullying. Children are prone to bullying by their peers and friends in classroom settings.
Various personal traits have been associated to prevent or to stand up against bullying. Such factors include the perception of bullying by others who witness it, the empathy and apathy levels of those individuals which are instigated and the level of self-efficacy and determination to stand up against bullying. It is possible that individuals could very well differentiate between bullying and associated behaviors. However, they cannot resist bullying on others because they either do not empathize or do not have the requisite confidence in themselves to prevent bullying. Hence, there are various factors which may influence defending. Such factors may be personality traits or environmental traits.
The study considered for appraisal examined whether the cognitive factors (perception of bullying, self-efficacy, feeling of empathy), interpersonal factors (popularity amongst student’s /leadership behavior) are related to defending behaviors. Such analysis was carried out across different classroom settings. 6708 individuals belonging to 3rd grade, 4th grade and 5th grade were included in the study. 49% of the study population was boys. The mean age of the students was 11 years. Individuals from middle grades were selected because the cognitive abilities are expressed most in these age groups. Below this age group, the children are too young to intercept on issues of bullying. On the other hand, beyond this age group, individuals are habituated to bullying behavior and are non-responsive. Multilevel regression models were collected to analyze the results of the study.
Regression models include one dependant variable and different independent variables. Thus, regression model helps to assess the direction of influence between a dependent and independent variable/s. It also predicts the magnitude of the dependent variable based on the magnitude and direction of the independent variable. The dependent variable considered for the study was defending behavior. On the other hand, the independent variables considered were cognitive factors (perception of bullying, self-efficacy, feeling of empathy), interpersonal factors (popularity amongst student’s /leadership behavior), and environmental factors (classroom settings).
The hypothesis considered for the study was based on the evaluation of regression statistics. A positive relation or association would be expected to exist, if the correlation value is positive and if the negative relation exists the value would be negative. Negative correlation values indicate that increasing the magnitude of independent variable would reduce the magnitude of the dependent variable. On the other hand, positive correlation values indicate that, increasing the magnitude of independent variable would also increase the magnitude of dependent variable too. However, to statistically consider those relations significant pr non-significant, level of significance must be determined for correlation coefficients. If the p-value is less than 0.05, then it will indicate that the correlation coefficients are significant.
On the other hand, if the p-value is more than 0.05, then it will indicate that the correlation coefficients are non-significant. Hence, such relationships which are not significant would not be considered as determinant factors for influencing defending behavior. Step wise regression helped in the elimination of non-significant factors from the models, and helped to inculcate the actual significant factors to provide a holistic predictive model for defending behavior. Peer reviewed tools and standardized questionnaire methods were implemented to assess the defending and bullying behaviors. Moreover, the individual traits or abilities were also assessed by evidenced-based tools. The results of the appraised study indicated that defending behavior was highly correlated to the internal conscience of empathy/apathy. Moreover, the popularity trait was also correlated to strong resistance (defending) behaviors. It was shown, that popularity based traits were mostly demonstrated when bullying was associated with erosion of social costs.
The study is very pertinent, in providing a road map to educate children, and make them empathize on the negative constraints and consequences of bullying. We have to instigate the emotional feelings of children, so that they can stand up to their peers who are exposed to bullying. The study also explains the need for the development of societal interactions and culture amongst children. Further, individual children must be mentally strong and inculcate the behavior of self-efficacy in them. Future studies may be conducted, with different classroom factors which help to develop self-efficacy and feelings of empathy. This would help teachers and mentors in framing educational goals for a student, based on academics and behavioral skills.
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