Integrating multi-disciplinary social science theories and perspectives to understand school bullying and victimisation

Jun Sung Hong, Dorothy L. Espelage, Simon C. Hunter, Paula Allen-Meares

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

4 Citations (Scopus)


This chapter provides an overview of multiple social science theories and perspectives in explaining bullying. It is divided into theories and perspectives represented by four major branches of social science: psychology, sociology, anthropology, and political-economics. Scholars have therefore come to realise the importance of integrating psychological theories with social environmental perspectives. The chapter also provides a trans-disciplinary analysis, as well as a singular analysis, of theories and perspectives that move the research beyond a psychologically dominated explanation of bullying. Theories and frameworks that underpin psychological perspectives are attachment theory, social learning theory, social-ecological framework, and theory of stress and coping. Attachment theory is a widely accepted developmental theory that explains the nature of an affectual bond between child and primary caregiver. The possible explanation for the development of school bullying comes from social learning theory, which suggests that “most human behaviour is learned observationally through modeling: from observing others. Anthropology is a discipline with potential to inform research on victimisation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge International Handbook of Human Aggression: Current Issues and Perspectives
EditorsJane L. Ireland, Philip Birch, Carol A. Ireland
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781315618777
ISBN (Print)9781138668188
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • school bullying
  • victimisation
  • aggression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


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