To examine the extent, form, experiences, impact, and possible solutions regarding cyberbullying at the post-secondary level in Canada: CB among students, towards faculty members, and among faculty members. The study involves an online student survey, an online faculty survey, student focus groups, faculty interviews, a policy scan, and interviews with administrators/policy makers.
Cyberbullying at University
Principal Investigator: Dr. Wanda Cassidy
Co-Investigators: Dr. Margaret Jackson, Criminology
Funding Agency: SSHRC Standard Research Grant
Additional Team Members:
Collaborators: Chantal Faucher & Brian Naicker (SFU), Lida Blizard (Kwantlen), Natalie Sharpe & Connie Varnhagen (U of Alberta), Linda Eyre (U of New Brunswick)
This study involved a policy scan of relevant university policies related to cyberbullying and harassment at 75 universities across Canada; survey data collected from students and faculty members at four participating universities; interviews with faculty members and administrators; and focus groups with students. The policy results are published, as well as articles related to the findings from the surveys (see listings under publications). Journal articles discussing the qualitative data (interviews/focus groups) are still in process.
How This Project is Carried Out
In collaboration with four universities in Canada.
Why This Project Matters
There is a significant body of research focusing on cyberbullying at the K-12 level, but very little to date at the post-secondary level. Yet members of the university community are experiencing unwanted, hurtful and derogatory messages, which can seriously impact their health and well-being, as well as negatively influence the wider university culture. In British Columbia WorkSafe BC has mandated that public institutions develop appropriate policies and practices that effectively address workplace bullying/cyberbullying. In general, universities policies and practices have not kept up with the proliferation of communication technologies and how they are being used and abused.
How This Project is Put into Action
The data collection phase is complete, and we have published four journal articles, one book chapter, and three research reports on the project. We have yet to fully analyze our qualitative data collected through the interviews and focus groups. We have discussed our findings in the local and national media, hosted a provincial symposium on the topic (with several universities and colleges in BC, Alberta and Washington State represented), and held meetings with relevant policy makers. We have presented our findings at conferences and developed partnerships with international colleagues working in related areas. Safety and Risk Services at Simon Fraser University contracted with our research team to provide them with additional international research information related to workplace and university-based bullying; this will assist them in policy development on campus.
Where to Learn More
Dr. Chantal Faucher - Cyberbullying at Canadian Universities: Linking Research, Policy and Practice
Dr. Wanda Cassidy - Cyberbullying at Canadian Universities: Linking Research, Policy and Practice
Dr. Margaret Jackson - Cyberbullying at Canadian Universities: Linking Research, Policy and Practice