Cyberbullying levels of impact in a special school setting

Paula Beer, Fiona Hallett, Claire Hawkins, Dawn Hewitson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
31 Downloads (Pure)


This study offers a multi-dimensional analysis of ‘real world’ cyberbullying between members of a special school community. By exploring the perceptions of a member of school staff observing, and reflecting upon, a series of inter-connected cyberbullying incidents, the purpose of this article is to analyse the social and educational contexts within which interactions of this nature are embedded. The interview both illuminated a number of themes pertinent to the current literature, and extended those related to the call for further analysis of the contextual determinants of cyberbullying. The influence of the conditions experienced by the children involved (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC)) is discussed and demonstrated. This use of natural observation provides a current and ‘real world’ illustration of teacher perceptions of the complex behaviours and interactions occurring in cyberspace, which hold potential for grave consequences. A hopeful tone is maintained as the potential for selfless upstander behaviour and resolution via the involvement of supportive and knowledgeable pastoral staff is realised in the article’s conclusion alongside an examination of the potential for more indepth case-study research comparing, and contrasting, staff and pupil reactions and interactions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-124
JournalThe International Journal of Emotional Education
Issue number1
Early online date30 Apr 2017
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 30 Apr 2017


  • cyberbullying
  • upstander
  • bystander
  • victim
  • special school


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