Bullying among Turkish high school students.Child Abuse Negl 2006; 30(2):193-204CA
The purpose of this study was to investigate school bullying among public high school students in Turkey.
This study used a survey to examine different aspects of bullying in schools. The participants (N = 692) were students chosen from five state high schools in Ankara in the 2000-2001 academic year. A self-administered questionnaire of 28 single or multiple-choice questions was devised by the authors to examine the students' perceptions of bullying in schools. Descriptive statistical analyses were used to interpret the data.
Of the total of 692 students, everyone reported having been bullied. Thirty three point five percent had been bullied verbally, 35.5% had been bullied physically, 28.3% had been bullied emotionally, and 15.6% had been bullied sexually, at least once during the academic year. Victims were faced with one or more types of bullying. There were clear gender differences, with boys consistently experiencing more physical bullying including kicking-slapping, assault with a knife, rude physical jokes, and more verbal bullying including name calling and insulting-swearing (all significant at p < .001). Among the four types of bullying, the most common forms of bullying faced by girls and boys were the same in order: pushing (58.1% girls/63.5% boys) and name-calling (44.1%/61.8%). About one-third of the students stated that they did not get any help in coping with bullying. The main reason for bullying was pretending to be strong (43.1%). Among the four types of bullying in both genders, students generally reported negative views about the consequences on them including low psychological well-being, poor social adjustment, and psychological distress.
Bullying is a serious problem in schools in Turkey and is a matter of recent concern. This is the first research investigating bullying in Turkey. At the present there is no policy at the central level to deal with bullying. It is expected that the results of this study will raise the awareness of students, teachers, school principals, and educational managers and parents to the problem.