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Prevention and intervention of bullying in learning environments

This is the study programme for 2019/2020. It is subject to change.

This internet based module is a joint master module (i.e. level 9) established through a professional cooperation between National Centre for Learning Environment and Behavioural Research in Education at the University of Stavanger (UiS) and National Anti-Bullying Research and Resource Centre at the Dublin City University (DCU). The module is placed at the National Centre for Learning Environment and Behavioural Research, UiS, and School of Education Studies, DCU.
The focus of the module will be on prevention as well as intervention of bullying in educational settings from preschool to higher education and will have a school wide approach. The module aims to give students insight and knowledge on how teachers can prevent, identify and intervene towards bullying, using a system approach. The themes will be presented using theories of social psychology, learning theories, equality and diversity and school sociology. A broad range of international research will be presented.
The module will be internet based offering one assembly for the students during the module in Dublin or in Stavanger.
Completed module can be part of the master's in Education at both Department of Teacher education, special Education, UiS, and School of Education Studies, DCU.

Learning outcome

The candidate:
  • has advanced knowledge within the field of bullying research and specialized insight into bullying in learning environments in educational settings from pre-school to higher education.
  • has thorough knowledge of theories of aggression and social behaviour to understand the dynamics of bullying
  • has knowledge about special relevant measures for solving bullying situations, both on an individual and school level.

The candidate:
  • can analyze and deal critically with various sources of information of prevention and intervention of bullying and use them to structure and formulate scholarly arguments.
  • can analyze existing theories, methods and interpretation of bullying in educational environments and work independently on practical and theoretical problems.
  • can identify and analyze a bullying situation and the role of peers, the teacher, parents and school leadership of the school in order to deal with it.
  • Can work independently regarding prevention and intervention both on an individual level and in accordance with a systemic approach.

General competence
The candidate:
  • can analyze relevant academic, professional and research ethical problems.
  • can apply his/her knowledge and skills in new areas in order to carry out advanced assignments and projects.
  • can communicate about academic issues, analyses and conclusions in the field, both with specialists and the general public.
  • can contribute to new thinking and innovation processes.
  • Can reflect critically regarding theories and empirical data in the field of bullying.


1. Bullying - the concept, dynamics and impacts
2. A system approach to prevent, identify and deal with bullying in learning environments
3. Policy development and legislation at European, national and school level

Required prerequisite knowledge

Good knowledge of English is required.


3 Essays
Weight Duration Marks Aid
Essay 1 A - F
Essay 2 A - F
Essay 3 A - F
Three essays, 2000 words each. Each essay will count 1/3 towards the final grade. The essays must be submitted in English.

Coursework requirements

Completed all tasks given in the internet sessions.
This will include multiple choice tasks and questions related to the online lectures, films and literature.

Course teacher(s)

Course coordinator
Hildegunn Fandrem

Method of work

12 internet based sessions with lectures and tasks to complete. There will be arranged for one assembly in Dublin or in Stavanger with brief speeches and discussions drawn on cases.
Work load: 200 hours for lectures, 150 for individual literature study and 50 to complete the essay.

Open to

Bachelor's degree in teaching or pre-school teaching, social work or an equivalent qualificationGood knowledge of English is required


The required module reading material
Books (need to be bought)
Besag, V. E. (2006). Understanding Girls' Friendships, Fights and Feuds: A Practical Approach to Girls' Bullying. Berkshire: Open University Press.
O'Higgins Norman, J. (2008). Homophobic Bullying in Irish Secondary Education. Dublin: Academica Press. pp. 95-156.
Book Chapters (available in pdf on the LOOP-platform)
Card, N. L. & Little, T. D. (2007). Differential Relations of Instrumental and Reactive Aggression With Maladjustment: Does Adaptivity Depend on Function? In Patricia H. Hawley, P. H.; Little, T. D. & Rodkin, P. C. (2007). Aggression and Adaptation: The bright side to bad behavior. NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Inc., pp. 107-135.
Hanewinkel, R. (2004) Prevention of bullying in German schools: an evaluation of an anti-bullying program. In Smith, P. K.; Pepler, D. & Rigby, K. (Eds.) (2004) Bullying in Schools. How successful can interventions be? Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 81-98.
Idsoe, T.; Dyregrov, A.; Idsoe, E. C., & Nielsen, M. B. (2016). Bullying and PTSD symptoms in children and adolescents. In Martin, C.; Preedy, V. & Palet, V. B. (Eds.) (2016). Comprehensive Guide to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. New York: Springer Publishing Company, pp.1367-1381. http://www.springer.com/psychology/health+and+behavior/book/978-3-319-08358-2
Menesini et al. (2013). Definitions of cyberbullying. Chapter 2 in Smith, P. K. & Steffgen, G. (2013). Cyberbullying through the new media: Findings from an international network. London: Psychology press, pp. 23-36.
Olweus, D. (2004). The Olweus Bullying Prevention Programme: design and implementation issues and a new national initiative in Norway. In Smith, P.K.; Pepler, D. & Rigby, K. (Eds.) (2004) Bullying in Schools. How successful can interventions be? Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 13-36.
O'Dowd, E. (2013). The Challenges of Non-Reporting of Bullying. In O'Moore, M. & Stevens, P. (Eds.) (2013). Bullying in Irish Education (80-99). Cork: Cork University Press.
O'Moore, M. (2010). School Bullying: Definitions and the forms it takes. In Understanding School Bullying: A guide for parents and teachers (2010). Dublin: Veritas Publications. Chapter 1, p 23-44. http://www.veritasbooksonline.com/authors/o/m/mona-o/understanding-school-bullying.html
O'Moore, M. (2013). ABC Whole-School Community Approach to Bullying Prevention. In O'Moore, M. & Stevens, P. (Eds.) (2013). Bullying in Irish Education (262-290). Cork: Cork University Press.
O'Higgins Norman, J. (2011). Sociology of Education. In Walsh, B. (ed) (2011). Education Studies in Ireland. Dublin: Gill and MacMillan, pp. 107-125.
Pikas, A. (1989). The Common Concern Method for the Treatment of Mobbing. In Roland, E. & Munthe, E. (Eds.) (1989). Bullying: An International Perspective. London: David Fulton, 91-104.
Samivalli, C. & Peets, K. (2009). Bullies, Victims, and Bully-Victim Relationship in Middle Childhood and Early Adolescence. In Rubin, K.; Bukowski, W. M. & Laursen, B. (Eds.) (2009). Handbook of Peer Interactions, Relationships and Groups. New York: Guilford Press, 322-340.
Smith, P. (2005). Definition, types, and prevalence of school bullying and violence. In Munthe, E.; Solli, E.; Ytre-Arne, E. & Roland, E. (red.) (2005). Taking Fear out of Schools. Stavanger. University of Stavanger. Centre for Behavioral Research, pp. 14-21.
Smith, M. (2013). School Bullying and Some Law. In O'Moore, M. & Stevens, P. (Eds.) (2013). Bullying In Irish Education (401-498). Cork: Cork University Press.
Articles/Research Papers (available online)
Aluede, O.; Adeleke, F.; Omoike, D. & Afen-Akpaida, J. (2008). A review of the extent, nature, characteristics and effects of bullying behavior in schools. Journal of Instructional Psychology, 35 (2), pp. 151-158.
Bauman, S.; Rigby, K. & Hoopa, K. US teachers' and schools counsellors' strategies for handling school bullying incidents. Educational Psychology, 28(7), 837-856.DOI: 10.1080/01443410802379085.
Bjoerqvist, K. Sex differences in physical, verbal, and indirect aggression: A review of recent research. Sex roles, 30(3) 177-188.
Bjoerqvist, K.; Lagerspetz, K. & Kaukiainen, A. (1992). Do girls manipulate and boys fight? Developmental trends in regards to direct and indirect aggression. Aggressive Behavior, 18, 117-127.
Cary, C. E. & McMillen, J. C. (2012). The data behind the dissemination a systematic review oftrauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy for use with children and youth. Children and Youth Services Review, (34), 748-757.
Cornell, D.; Gregory, A.; Huang F. & Fan, X. (2012). Perceived Prevalence of Teasing and Bullying Predicts High School Dropout Rates. Journal of Educational Psychology, 105, 138-149. Doi: 1037/a0030416.
Corcoran, L.; Connolly, I. & O'Moore, M. (2012). Cyber-bullying in Irish Schools: An investigation of personality and self-concept. The Irish Journal of Psychology, 33, 153-165.
de Souza, M. & McLean, K. (2012) Bullying and violence: changing an act of disconnectedness into an act of kindness, Pastoral Care in Education: An International Journal of Personal, Social and Emotional Development, 30:2, 165-180.
Espelage, D. L.; Low, S.; Polanin, J. R. & Brown, E. C. (2013). A Meta-Analysis of School-Based Bullying Prevention Programs' Effects on Bystander Intervention Behavior. Journal of Adolescent Health 53 (2), 180-186.
Fandrem, H.; Strohmeier, D. & Roland, E. (2009). Bullying and Victimization among Native and Immigrant Adolescents in Norway: The Role of Proactive and Reactive Aggressiveness. Journal of Early Adolescence, 29(6), 898-923.
Farmer et al. (2010). Peer Relations of Bullies, Bully-Victims and Victims: The two social Worlds of Bullying in Second Grade Classrooms. The elementary school Journal, 110, 3, 364-392.
Farrington, D. P. & Ttofi, M. M. (2009). School-Based Programs to Reduce Bullying and Victimization. Campbell Systematic Reviews, 2009:6.
Ging, D. & O'Higgins Norman, J. (2016). Cyberbullying, conflict management or just messing? Teenage girls' understanding and experiences of gender, friendship and conflict on Facebook in an Irish second-level school. Feminist Media Studies, February, 1-17.
Gradinger, P.; Strohmeier, D. & Spiel, C. (2009). Traditional bullying and cyberbullying: Identification of risk groups for adjustment problems. Journal of Psychology, 2017, 205-213.
Hawker, D. S. J. & Boulton, M. J. (2000). Twenty years' research on peer victimization and psychosocial maladjustment: A meta-analytic review of cross-sectional studies. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 41, 441-455.
Hinduja, S. & Patchin, J. W. (2008). Cyberbullying: An Exploratory Analysis of Factors Related to Offending and Victimization. Deviant Behaviour; 29:2: 129-156.
Hunter, S. C. & Boyle, J. (2004). Appraisal and coping strategy use in victims of school bullying. The British Psychological Society, 74, 83-107.
Idsoe, T.; Dyregrov, A. & Idsoe, E. C. (2012). Bullying and PTSD symptoms. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 40(6), 901-11.
Isaacs, J.; Hodges, E. & Salmivalli, C. (2008). Long-term consequences of victimization: A follow-up from adolescence to young adulthood. European Journal of Developmental Science, 2, 387-397.
Juvonen, J.; Schacter, H. L.; Sainio, M. & Salmivalli, C. (2016, January 21). Can a School-Wide Bullying Prevention Program Improve the Plight of Victims? Evidence for Risk × Intervention Effects. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. Advance online publication.http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/ccp0000078
Kanetsuna, T.; Smith, P. K. & Morita, Y. (2006). Coping with Bullying at School: Children's Recommended Strategies and Attitudes to School-Based Interventions in England and Japan. Aggressive Behaviour, 32: 570-580.
Kochenderfer-Ladd, B. & Pelletier, M, E. (2008). Teachers' views and beliefs about bullying: Influences on classroom management strategies and students' coping with peer victimisation. Journal of School Psychology, 46, pp. 431-453.
Livingstone, S. (2016). Reframing media effects in terms of children's rights in the digital age. Journal of Children and Media, 10(1), 4-12.
McElearney, A,; Roosemale-Cocq, S.; Scott, J. & Stephenson, P. (2008). Exploring the Anti-Bullying Role of a Befriending Peer Support Programme: A Case Study within the Primary School Setting in Northern Ireland. Child Care in Practice, 14(2), Pp. 109-130
Murray-Harvey, R.; Skrzpiec, G. & Slee, P. T. (2012). Effective and Ineffective Coping with Bullying Strategies as Assessed by Informed Professionals and Their Use by Victimised Students. Australian Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 22 (1), pp. 122-138.
O'Higgins Norman, J. (2009). Still Catching up: Schools, Sexual Orientation and Homophobia in Ireland. SEXUALITY AND CULTURE, 13, pp. 1-16.
O'Higgins Norman, J. (2010). Conflicts of Ethos: Issues of Equality in Faith Based Schools, Educational Management Administration and Leadership, 38, pp. 534-546.
O'Higgins Norman, J. & Connolly, J. (2011). Mimetic theory and scapegoating in the age of cyberbullying: the case of Phoebe Prince, Pastoral Care in Education: An International Journal of Personal, Social and Emotional Development, 29:4, 287-300.
O'Higgins Norman, J. & Galvin, M. (2006). Straight Talk: An Investigation of Attitudes and Experiences of Homophobic Bullying in Second-Level Schools. Dublin City University: Centre for Educational Evaluation.
O'Moore, M. & Kirkham, C. (2001). Self-esteem and it's relation to bullying behavior. Aggressive Behavior, 27, 269-283.
Paul, S., Smith, P. K. & Blumberg, H. H. (2012). Comparing student perceptions of coping strategies and school interventions in managing bullying and cyberbullying incidents Pastoral Care in Education, 30(2), 127-146.DOI: 10.1080/02643944.2012.679957
Roland, E. & Idsøe, T. (2001). Aggression and Bullying. Aggressive Behavior, 27, 446-462.
Roland, E. & Galloway, D. (2002). Classroom influences on bullying. Educational Research, 44, 299-312.
Roland, E. & Midthassel, U. (2012). The Zero program. New Directions for youth development
, 133, 29-40.
Roland, E.; Bru, E.; Midthassel, U. V. & Vaaland, G. S. (2009). The Zero Programme against bullying: effects of the programme in the context of the Norwegian manifesto against bullying. Social Psychology of Education, March 2010. Vol.13, 1, 41-55
Salmivalli, C. (2010). Bullying and the peer group: A review. Aggression and Violent behavior, 15, 112-120.
Salmivalli, C. & Poskiparta, E. (2012). Making bullying prevention a priority in Finnish schools: The KiVa antibullying program. New Directions for youth development, 133, 41-54.
Salmivalli, C.; Huttunen, A. & Lagerspetz, K. M. J. (1997). Peer network and bullying in schools. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 38, 305-312.
Sjursø, I.; Fandrem, H & Roland, E. (2015). Emotional problems in Traditional and Cyber Victimization. Journal of School Violence, 00: 1-18, 2015.
Slonje, R. & Smith, P. K. (2008). Cyberbullying: Another main type of bullying? Scandinavian Journal of psychology, 49, 147-154.
Strohmeier, D. & Noam, G.G. (2012). Bullying in schools: What is the problem, and how can educators solve it? New Directions for youth development, 133, 7-13.
Strohmeier, D.; Fandrem, H.; Stefanek, E. & Spiel, C. (2012). The Goal to be Accepted by Friends as Underlying Function of Overt Aggressive Behaviour in Immigrant Adolescents. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology. 53, 80-88.
Swearer, S. M. & Hymel, S. (2015). Understanding the psychology of bullying: Moving toward a social-ecological diathesis-stress model. American Psychologist, 70(4), 344-353.
Tremblay, R. E. (2010). Developmental Origins of Disruptive Behavioral Problems: the "Original Sin" Hypothesis, Epigenetics and their consequences for prevention. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 51, 341-367.
Varjas et al. (2010). High school student's perceptions of motivations for cyberbullying: An exploratory study. Western Journal of Emergency medicine, 3, 269-273.
Yiu Bun Chung & Mantak Yuen (2012). Students' perceptions of a reporting and feedback system for learning and development in an "inviting school" in Hong Kong, Pastoral Care in Education: An International Journal of Personal, Social and Emotional Development, 30:3, 241-262.
Reports and Government Documents
Children's Rights Alliance (2015). Picture Your Rights - A Report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child from Children living in Ireland.http://childrensrights.ie/sites/default/files/submissions_reports/files/PictureYourRights0515.pdf
Craig, W. M. & Harel, Y. (2004). Bullying, physical fighting and victimization. In Currie, C. (Ed.) (2004). Young people's health in context, Health Behavior in School aged Children (HBSC) study: International report from the 2001/2002 survey. World health organization, Policy Series: Health policy for children and adolescents issue 4, Copenhagen: WHO Regional office Europe, pp. 133-144.
Department of Education and Skills (2013). Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools. Department of Education and Skills, Dublin.
EU Charter on Fundamental Freedoms and Responsibilities.
Norwegian Education Act https://www.regjeringen.no/en/dokumenter/education-act/id213315/
Ombudsman for Children (2012). Dealing with bullying in schools. A consultation with children & young people. Dublin: Ombudsman for Children's Office.www.oco.ie
Teaching Council of Ireland (2001). Teaching Council Act. http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/eli/2001/act/8/enacted/en/html
Teaching council of Ireland (2016). The Code of Professional Conduct for Teachers in Ireland.http://www.teachingcouncil.ie/en/Publications/Fitness-to-Teach/Code-of-Professional-Conduct-for-Teachers1.pdf
Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Articles 3, 8, 26 and 28)
UN Convention on the Rights of the Child https://www.regjeringen.no/no/dokumenter/Barnekonvensjonen-engelsk/id601078/
«Endringer i pensumlitteratur kan forekomme»

This is the study programme for 2019/2020. It is subject to change.

Sist oppdatert: 08.04.2020