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Cyberbullying: Social Psychology Concentration

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Technology continues to develop rapidly and is therefore changing our ways of functioning in society. This brings new dimensions to our responsibilities as educators and mentors

Doors are constantly opening, bringing more opportunities and at the same time requiring all of us to rethink the ethical use of technology in schools. For example, Internet cell phones and other communication technologies, while providing us with conveniences, also expose our students to interactions that put their safety and emotional well-being at risk.

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Presently, the Information Technologies are associated either directly or indirectly with every human being and influences the life at almost every crucial stage. When it comes to have interactions the role and influence of the information technology appears to be highly critical. It not only provides various advantages to the people living in a society but also facilitates them while having dealings across the borders. Along with advantages some sort of negative impacts also comes in the scenario which eventually leads to some sort of disturbances and losses. These negative impacts of information technology basically appear as a result of mismanagement and unethical dealings. The same sort of impact of information technology is witnessed in the cyber bullying. The cyber bullying normally occurs on the mediums including the internet, cellular phones and other devices which are utilized to send or post text/images intended to embarrass/hurt persons

This phenomenon is also described by other researchers as the intentions to disturb persons in various ways such as sending continuous messages and mails to a person who rejects to have interaction. In continuation to this simple type of cyber bullying the intentions like sexual remarks, threats, pejorative labels (hate speech), posting false statement as a fact aimed at humiliation also comes under the cyber bullying. In the present era of globalization where the people are getting educated and close to each other with the use of various available communication resources. This diversity in the societies is leading the globe towards the environment where the people participate highly in various critical issues of the society. They are better informed and aware of their rights and privileges, this awareness and enhanced options of rapid communication leads to active participation. The people belonging to different portions of the societies strongly react to the changes and advancements around them at any level, hence, increasing the sensitivity and role of the information technology. This study aims to highlight the increasing impact and psychological effects of the cyber bullying. Therefore, a deep and critical insight of the factors related to the cyber bullying including the age group of the persons involved, the probable responses of the users/involved persons, the magnitude and nature of interaction occurs, the overall environment in context with attitudes and behaviours, are deemed necessary.

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Cyberbullying is defined as the electronic posting of mean-spirited messages about a person (such as a student) often done anonymously (Merriam-Webster, 2017). Most of the investigations of cyberbullying have been conducted with students in elementary, middle and high school who were between 9 and 18 years old

Those studies focused on examining the prevalence and frequency of cyberbullying. Using “cyberbullying” and “higher-education” as key words in Google scholar (January, 2019) (all in title) yields only twenty one articles. In 2009, 2012 and 2013 one article appeared each year, since 2014 each year there were few publications. Of these articles only seven relates to effect of cyberbullying on the students, thus a gap in the literature exists in that it only minimally reports on studies involving undergraduate students. Given their relationship and access to technology, it is likely that cyberbullying occurs frequently among undergraduates. The purpose of this study is to examine the frequency and media used to perpetrate cyberbullying, as well as the relationship that it has with the academic, social and emotional development of undergraduate students. The Internet has been the most useful technology of modern times, which has enabled entirely new forms of social interaction, activities, and organizing. This has been possible thanks to its basic features such as widespread usability and access. However, it also causes undesirable behaviors that are offensive or threatening to others, such as cyberbullying. This is a relatively new phenomenon.

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In conclusion, in addition to teaching children the right perspective on social interactions, empathy, and ethics, adults need to show all children under their care that they are loved, protected, and heard. Dr. Poland expressed his view that the solution to cyberbullying lies in addressing the needs of the children first and foremost: “I’m trying to think of who said this, but I certainly agree with it: Why don’t we realize in America that the most important thing is to put our children first?” he told “Once you decide to put children first, then you have funding for schools, you have smaller classes, you have more counselors, more social workers, you have more of everything, and the chance to really improve things. Somehow out of all of this, we have to have a kinder society, and one where everybody gets involved and stops these things early.”

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Merriam-Webster . 2017. On-line Dictionary.

Grene M.B. Counselling and climate change as treatment modalities for bullying in school. Int. J. Adv. Couns. 2003;25(4):293–302.

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