• Teacher Bullies: A Factorial Analysis of Perceptions of Teachers’ Bullying Behaviors

      Davies, Sally Walter (2011-09-22)
      Bullying in schools is a global phenomenon that can infringe upon the rights of students to learn and grow in a secure and fostering environment. Most of the past and current research on school bullying focuses on peer bullying, but there is a gap in the understanding of types and characteristics of bullying behaviors. This study centered on a type of abusive behavior that has received very limited attention: teachers bullying students. For the purpose of this study, the definition of teacher bullying behavior is a repeated pattern of conduct used to punish, manipulate, or disparage a student, rooted in a power differential. Such behaviors may threaten, harm, humiliate, induce fear, or cause substantial emotional distress and go beyond a reasonable disciplinary procedure. The goal of this research was to uncover categories of teacher bullying behaviors. A factor analysis was conducted on data gathered through a questionnaire created for this study. The questionnaire contains descriptions of teacher behaviors, which participants described as bullying or not bullying, as well as measures of the severity of the behavior. The sample included graduates of public or non-public high schools who are 18 years or older. Over half of the sample (64%, N = 332) reported that a teacher had bullied them at least once. The final factor analysis consisted of a two-factor solution. The two factors that emerged were based on severity of behaviors. The first factor represented particularly severe bullying behaviors, while the second factor signified behaviors considered to be mild to moderate bullying by teachers. Interestingly, bystanding behaviors by teachers loaded on the first factor, which indicate these types of behaviors were considered to be severe bullying.