Bullying victimization: time trends and the overlap between traditional and cyberbullying across countries in Europe and North America
Objectives This study explores recent cross-national trends over time (2002–2014) in the occurrence of victimization by bullying; then it documents the overlap between cybervictimization and traditional bullying in 2014 among adolescents in 37 countries. Methods Data from four cycles (2002, 2006, 2010, and 2014) of the cross-national Health Behavior in School-Aged Children study were included (N = 764,518). Trends in traditional victimization were evaluated using logistic regression models in 37 countries. Prevalence of cybervictimization and the overlap between cybervictimization and traditional victimization were estimated. Results Linear decreases in bullying victimization were observed in 21 countries among boys, and in 12 countries among girls. The prevalence of cybervictimization was systematically lower than traditional victimization. Overall across all countries, 45.8% of those who reported cybervictimization also reported traditional victimization (46.5% for boys and 45.3% for girls), but wide country variations were observed. Conclusions These indicate the need for a more holistic perspective to intervention and prevention that considers all expressions of bullying, traditional or online. Public health programs and policies could focus on addressing bullying more broadly, rather than focusing on behaviors that happen in a particular context.