Thursday, October 20, 2011

Understanding Cyberbullying


Today’s guest blog is by Meghan K. McCoy, MEd.

Bullying—the repetitive, targeted and intentional, peer-on-peer abuse inflicted among two people in an unequal power relationship—has been in existence for as long many of us can remember. High-profile cases, tragic consequences, and increasing legal sanctions have aided in bringing this important topic to the forefront of our consciousness. Now that we all recognize the problem, it’s imperative that we begin to understand it from an evidence-based perspective!

This peer-on-peer abuse is not restricted, or even most rampant, in the hallways and classrooms of our schools. It has also invaded the online world of children and teens. We call this online abuse cyberbullying. In a world where youth are spending increasing amounts of time online, educators and professionals working with these digital natives will inevitably be faced with the fallout of this online abuse. A better understanding of digital natives, those who have “grown up online,” as well as the trends, frequencies, methods, and motivations of cyberbullying behaviors is crucial in helping to keep youth safe and responsible in their online use.

Join me at CHADD’s Annual International Conference on ADHD in Orlando to learn best-practice tools and techniques for preventing and responding to bullying and cyberbullying.
• What advice can we offer to victims and bystanders?
• What specific principles do the kids need to know about their online behavior?
• How can understanding the common characteristics of digital natives help us in combatting these issues?

Come to CHADD’s conference and let me share the some of the newest research with you!

Meghan K. McCoy, MEd, is the program coordinator of the Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center at Bridgewater State University.

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