Cyberbullying and Attachment Theory: Predictors of Cyberbullying Behaviors in an Undergraduate Population.

David Becerra, Pace University


As reliance on technology and the internet has increased over the years, it is important to analyze how individuals use these technologies for positive and negative social contact. Research has examined predictors of cyberbullying behaviors for various age groups, with the majority of research focusing on middle school and high school aged children (Doane, Kelley, Chiang, & Padilla, 2013; Sevcikova & Smahel, 2009; Burton, Florell, & Wygant, 2013). Specifically, numerous studies have shown a connection between insecure attachment to caregivers and increased rates of bullying, cyberbullying, aggressive behaviors, antisocial traits, etc (Allen, Porter, & McFarland, 2007; Constantino et al., 2007). Similarly, research on middle school youth has shown that individuals who reported positive peer and parent attachment displayed less cyberbullying behaviors (Burton, Florell & Wygant, 2013). Doane, Kelley, Chiang, and Padilla (2013) created the cyberbullying experiences survey (CES) specifically as a measure to quantify cyberbullying behaviors for this population. Finn (2004), discovered that approximately 1 in 10 young adults engage in cyberbullying and the present study seeks to add to the growing literature on cyberbullying with older populations to corroborate previous studies demonstrating a relationship between bullying and cyberbullying behaviors and adult attachment. Results suggest a mediation relationship exists between cyberbullying victimization, aggression, and age of first cyberbullying experience.

Subject Area

Developmental psychology|Psychology

Recommended Citation

Becerra, David, "Cyberbullying and Attachment Theory: Predictors of Cyberbullying Behaviors in an Undergraduate Population." (2017). ETD Collection for Pace University. AAI10752905.


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