Canadian school psychologists' understanding of bullying intervention based on their experiences in Alberta, Canada

  • Author / Creator
    Chan, Ellis
  • School bullying (referred to in this thesis as bullying) was a phenomenon with serious implications regarding short-term and long-term effects on the individuals involved (Craig & Pepler, 1999). While interventions of bullying early in an individual’s life might help alleviate the effects of bullying (Carter & Stewin, 1999), there were concerns that current intervention efforts were not optimal (Furlong et al., 2002; Pepler & Craig, 2011; PrevNet, 2007). Addressing the issue of bullying required a broader effort beyond any school in silo can accomplish (Fagan et al., 2009; Kania et al. 2011). A broader coordinated strategy was needed from schools, communities, and other stakeholders (Fagan et al. 2009; Kania et al. 2011). The present study aimed to explore school psychologists’ understanding of bullying intervention based on their experiences in Alberta, a province that has legislation and public concern over bullying (Alberta Education, 2014; Reid, 2010). To explore the school psychologists’ experience of bullying interventions a cross-case analysis approach was utilized. Eight school psychologists were interviewed. who are ideal persons for bullying intervention due to their training, and broad school wide perspective and target caseload in their school positions (Espelage et al., 2013; GSA Network, 2011; Morrison & Furlong, 1994; Murphy, 2012; National Association of School Psychologists, 2014). Interview data were coded using the constant comparative method (Hurworth & Mathison, 2011). The study showed bullying intervention was a complex experience with no simple pathway to remedying the phenomenon. Criteria to consider with bullying intervention included how bullying manifests in terms of the victim, the bully and the bullying behavior, the personnel and characteristics of the personnel involved, the focus of the bullying intervention, resources used, the role of the school psychologist, the referral route of the incident, the needs and priorities of the school, and the culture of bullying. Implications of this complexity included an emphasis on the importance of working cohesively between the multiple factors involved in bullying, and consideration of the multiple factors involved in bullying. Furthermore, the research emphasized the complexity of bullying going beyond a simple relationship between a bully and a victim.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2021
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.