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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(1), 156; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15010156

School Contextual Features of Social Disorder and Mental Health Complaints—A Multilevel Analysis of Swedish Sixth-Grade Students

1
Centre for Health Equity Studies (CHESS), Stockholm University/Karolinska Institutet, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
2
Institute for Futures Studies (IFFS), SE-111 31 Stockholm, Sweden
3
Swedish Institute for Social Research, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
4
National Board of Health and Welfare, SE-106 30 Stockholm, Sweden
5
Department of Sociology, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
6
Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine (IKE) and Center for Social and Affective Neuroscience (CSAN), Linköping University, SE-581 83 Linköping, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 December 2017 / Revised: 16 January 2018 / Accepted: 17 January 2018 / Published: 19 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Violence as a Public Health Issue)
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Abstract

This study addressed school-contextual features of social disorder in relation to sixth-grade students’ experiences of bullying victimization and mental health complaints. It investigated, firstly, whether the school’s concentrations of behavioural problems were associated with individual students’ likelihood of being bullied, and secondly, whether the school’s concentrations of behavioural problems and bullying victimization predicted students’ emotional and psychosomatic health complaints. The data were derived from the Swedish National Survey of Mental Health among Children and Young People, carried out among sixth-grade students (approximately 12–13 years old) in Sweden in 2009. The analyses were based on information from 59,510 students distributed across 1999 schools. The statistical method used was multilevel modelling. While students’ own behavioural problems were associated with an elevated risk of being bullied, attending a school with a higher concentration of students with behavioural problems also increased the likelihood of being bullied. Attending a school with higher levels of bullying victimization and behavioural problems predicted more emotional and psychosomatic complaints, even when adjusting for their individual level analogues. The findings indicate that school-level features of social disorder influence bullying victimization and mental health complaints among students. View Full-Text
Keywords: social disorganization theory; emotional; complaints; psychosomatic complaints; bullying; victimization; behavioural problems; school context; school climate; multilevel social disorganization theory; emotional; complaints; psychosomatic complaints; bullying; victimization; behavioural problems; school context; school climate; multilevel
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Modin, B.; Plenty, S.; Låftman, S.B.; Bergström, M.; Berlin, M.; Gustafsson, P.A.; Hjern, A. School Contextual Features of Social Disorder and Mental Health Complaints—A Multilevel Analysis of Swedish Sixth-Grade Students. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 156.

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