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Friday, July 18, 2014

The Literature on Bullying

At the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, Jessica Schroeder and colleagues have an article titled "Shedding Light on a Pervasive Problem: A Review of Research on Bullying Experiences Among Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders."  Some findings:

  • Taken together, the studies reviewed confirm that children and youth with ASD are experiencing increased rates of perceived physical, verbal, and relational forms of bullying relative to the general population.
  • The current review indicates that students with ASD tend to exhibit risk factors and lack protective factors associated with victimization in the general population. Many of these risk factors, and lack of protective factors, reflect characteristics or behaviours associated with a diagnosis of ASD and consequently place these children at high risk for victimization. Several studies of bullying and ASD have indicated that social exclusion, peer marginalization, and number of friendships are all related to rates of victimization within the ASD population.
  • One important theme is school climate. At the classroom level, an anti-bullying environment and teacher training appear to be critical.