Date of Award

Summer 8-5-2015

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Psychology

Committee Chair

Tammy D. Barry, Ph.D.

Committee Chair Department

Psychology

Committee Member 2

Christopher Barry, Ph.D.

Committee Member 2 Department

Psychology

Committee Member 3

Sara S. Jordan, Ph.D.

Committee Member 3 Department

Psychology

Committee Member 4

Robert D. Lyman, Ph.D.

Committee Member 4 Department

Psychology

Abstract

The current study examined how cybervictimization is related to aggression outcomes among adolescents. The current study also examined various potential risk and protective factors, including depressive symptoms, anger rumination, impulsivity, social support, and gender. It was hypothesized that the relation between cybervictimization and aggression or cyberbullying would be intensified when levels of depressive symptoms, impulsivity, and anger rumination were higher and that the relation between cybervictimization and aggression or cyberbullying would be attenuated when levels of social support were higher. Gender was examined as a research question, with no specific directionality hypothesized. The data for the current study were collected from parents and adolescents via an internet survey site. In total, 144 adolescents (69 males, 75 females, M = 14.90 years) and their parents (recruited from the community) completed the survey and were included in the study. Moderated multiple regression analyses were used to examine the effects of the various moderators on the relation between cybervictimization and aggression or cyberbullying. No significant interactions involving anger rumination or impulsivity were found. However, significant interactions involving depressive symptoms, social support, and gender were found when investigating the relation between cybervictimization and aggression or cyberbullying. The finding that cybervictimization relates to aggression and cyberbullying differentially, depending on gender and levels of depression and social support, could be particularly valuable when treating aggression and/or cyberbullying in adolescents, emphasizing a need to target mood and relational concerns.

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