Next Article in Journal
Yahoo! Answers as a Space for Informal Language Learning
Previous Article in Journal
Child Welfare and Successful Reunification through the Socio-Educative Process: Training Needs among Biological Families in Spain
Order Article Reprints
Font Type:
Arial Georgia Verdana
Font Size:
Aa Aa Aa
Line Spacing:
Column Width:

Patterns and Correlates for Bullying among Young Adolescents in Ghana

Centre for Learning Research, Department of Teacher Education, University of Turku, Turku FI-20014, Finland
Unit of Adolescent Psychiatry, Turku University Hospital, Department of Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Turku, Turku 20700, Finland
Centre for Injury Prevention and Community Safety (CIPCS), PeerCorps Trust Fund, 352/64 Makunganya Street, Co-Architecture Building, 4th Floor, P.O. Box 22499 Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Department of Population and Health, Faculty of Social Sciences, Private Mail Bag, University Post Office, University of Cape Coast, Ghana
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Soc. Sci. 2014, 3(4), 827-840;
Received: 7 July 2014 / Revised: 23 September 2014 / Accepted: 9 October 2014 / Published: 23 October 2014


Bullying is relatively common and is considered to be a public health problem among adolescents worldwide. The present study examined the risk factors associated with bullying behavior among adolescents in a lower-middle-income country setting. Data on 6235 adolescents aged 11–16 years, derived from the Republic of Ghana’s contribution to the Global School-based Health Survey, were analyzed using bivariate and multinomial logistic regression analysis. A high prevalence of bullying was found among Ghanaian adolescents. Alcohol-related health compromising behaviors (alcohol use, alcohol misuse and getting into trouble as a result of alcohol) increased the risk of being bullied. In addition, substance use, being physically attacked, being seriously injured, hunger and truancy were also found to increase the risk of being bullied. However, having understanding parents and having classmates who were kind and helpful reduced the likelihood of being bullied. These findings suggest that school-based intervention programs aimed at reducing rates of peer victimization should simultaneously target multiple risk behaviors. Teachers can also reduce peer victimization by introducing programs that enhance adolescents’ acceptance of each other in the classroom.

1. Introduction

Bullying, defined as a set of repeated behaviors that are “intentional and cause[s] physical and psychological harm to the recipient” [1], includes actions, such as name-calling or teasing, social exclusion and hitting [2,3,4]. Bullying is characterized by an imbalance of power that allows a more powerful person to victimize a less powerful individual [3,5]. Early adolescents have been found to be particularly vulnerable to the psychological effects of bullying [6,7]. Concurrently, bullying victimization peaks and intensifies during early adolescence [7,8,9]. This is particularly so, because early adolescence marks a period of immense pressure to attain social status or fit in with desirable peer groups [10,11]. For example, research demonstrates that toughness and aggressiveness are important status considerations for boys and physical attractiveness a major determinant of social status for girls [12]. Additionally, adolescence also represents a time of considerable change and possible insecurity, accompanied by social anxiety [13,14]. This may be the reason that so many mental health problems appear at this developmental period.
Victims of bullying, in general, experience poorer socio-emotional and physical wellbeing in school. There is an established association between bullying and a number of factors, including demographic factors, like gender and age. Male students have been found to report engaging in significantly more bullying than females [15,16,17,18], while school bullying has been found to decrease as children grow [19,20,21].
The school setting doubles as the place where bullying is perpetrated and as a potential avenue for change and prevention of bullying [18]. Group acceptance and friendship are shown to make distinct contributions to children’s adjustment and wellbeing [22], while poor peer relations have been found to predict high levels of aggression [19]. Children who are liked by their peers are shown to be sociable, helpful and non-aggressive, whereas children who are disliked by their peers are reported to be unsociable, disruptive, aggressive or withdrawn [23,24,25]. Likewise, victimization has been found to predict school avoidance [22], and children who have been involved in bullying perpetration and those who were bullied were more likely to run away from home [26].
The family plays an important role in shaping bullying behavior. Research, for example, indicates that children who come from poorly functioning households were more likely to feel insecure and detached from their parents [27,28] and to report lower parental support [29]. Those who were exposed to conflict at home [30] were more likely to report involvement in bullying. A recent study involving middle school students in the Guangdong Province of China found that young adolescents who were dissatisfied with their parental care were more likely to engage in bullying or to be a victim of bullying [16]. The results further indicated that good communication with parents reduced the chance of victimization. Additionally, research shows that adolescents who lived with both parents and enjoyed sound communication with their parents were often less likely to engage in bullying [31,32].
In a large cross-national study of adolescents in nineteen low- and middle-income countries (LMIC), Fleming and colleagues [33] found that 31.6% of adolescents who had been bullied reported to have smoked tobacco at least once, consumed alcohol, and some 13.3% had used drugs. Among the other correlates of bullying victimization reported in the literature are socioeconomic status [34,35,36,37], sexual intercourse [33,38], substance use (i.e., alcohol use, alcohol misuse, drug use) [5,39,40,41] and physical fighting [16,40,42,43].
Clearly, bullying appears to be common among adolescents worldwide. However, most research on the psychosocial effects of bullying has been carried out in high-income countries (HIC). Among adolescents in HICs, reported prevalence ranges from 14.6% to 56.3% for victimization and from 15.4% to 54.9% for bullying perpetration [12]. Relatively little research has been conducted on the phenomenon in LMIC. Available data on LMIC indicate that prevalence rates range from 20% to 40% in countries like China, Lebanon, Morocco and Ghana, to 41% to 61% in Botswana, Chile and Kenya [7,33]. In Ghana, study reports have indicated a prevalence of 40% among senior high school students [7] and 58.7% among junior high school students [8]. Owusu et al. [7] further report that Ghanaian adolescents who were victims of bullying were significantly more likely to experience depression, loneliness and to have contemplated suicide.
That notwithstanding, there is still a significant void in understanding the scope and nature of the psychological effects of bullying among early adolescents in Africa, in general, and Ghana in particular. The few existing studies have often focused on a few risk factors to the neglect of other contextual factors that have been identified among adolescents in HIC settings, such as alcohol use and misuse, substance use, injury, hunger, etc. Thus, to date, we do not have a full picture about early adolescent’s bullying behavior and its related risk factors in the Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).

2. Methods

2.1. Data Description and Inclusion Criteria

The data for this study were derived from the Ghanaian contribution to the 2007 Global School-based Health Survey (GSHS). The GSHS was developed by the World Health Organization (Geneva) in collaboration with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (Atlanta, GA). It collects relevant information for the discernment of behavioral and health risks among adolescents of school age in 43 countries. In Ghana, a total of 6 235 secondary students aged 11–16 years (52.4% male) participated in the 2007 survey, which had a response rate of 86%. We excluded 154 participants that did not have complete information on their age and gender. Furthermore, we only considered participants who responded to the question on bullying in all analyses, resulting in a final sample of 4 763 (53.0% male). Detailed information on the data collection methods, the questionnaire and procedures are published elsewhere [9]. At the time of data collection, the study had been approved by the Ghana Education Service. Written permission was obtained from the participating schools and classroom teachers. Parental permission was obtained and student participation was voluntary and anonymous [39]. All data used in the present study were freely available and accessible via the U.S. Centers for Disease Control website.

2.1.1. Measures

For the dependent variable, we used the responses to the survey question: “During the past 30 days, on how many days were you bullied?” The responses were “0 days”, “1 or 2 days”, “3 to 5 days”, “6 to 9 days”, “10 to 19 days”, “20 to 29 days” or “all 30 days”. These answers were trichotomized, representing: being bullied during one or two days (N = 1060), three or more days (N = 1601) or not at all (N = 2102). For the independent variables, our choices were informed by the existing literature on bullying [44,45,46,47]. In addition to the demographic variables of age and sex, we selected several independent variables from the questionnaire to screen for statistically significant associations with the dependent variable. In Table 1, we show the independent variables that were chosen in addition to age and sex.
Table 1. Selected independent variables considered in a study of bullying among school-attending adolescents in Ghana (2007).
Table 1. Selected independent variables considered in a study of bullying among school-attending adolescents in Ghana (2007).
VariableDerived from QuestionCoded (All Dichotomized)
Hunger“During the past 30 days, how often did you go hungry because there was not enough food in your home”?“most of the time/always” vs. “never/rarely/sometimes”
Being physically attacked“During the past 12 months, how many times you were physically attacked?”“0 or 1 times” vs. “2 or more times”
Physical fighting“During the past 12 months, how many times were you in a physical fight?”“0 or 1 times” vs. “2 or more times”
Injury“During the past 12 months, how many times were you seriously injured”?“0 or 1 times” vs. “2 or more times”
Alcohol use“During the past 30 days, on how many days did you have at least one drink containing alcohol?”“0 days” vs. “1 or more days”
Alcohol misuse“During your life, how many times did you drink so much alcohol that you were really drunk?”“0 times to 2 times” vs. “3 or more times”
Got into trouble as a result of alcohol“During your life, how many times have you ever had a hangover, felt sick, got into trouble with your family or friends, missed school or got into fights, as a result of drinking alcohol?”“0 times” vs. “1 or more times”
Substance use“During your life, how many times have you used drugs, such as wee, cocaine, LSD or heroine (wee is a term used for marijuana)?”“0 days” vs. “1 or more days”
Truancy“During the past 30 days, on how many days did you miss classes or school without permission?”“0–2 days” vs “3 or more days”
School environment“During the past 30 days, how often were most of the students in your school kind and helpful?”“always” vs. “never/rarely/sometimes/most of the time”
Understanding parents“During the past 30 days, how often did your parents or guardians understand your problems and worries?”“always” vs. “never/rarely/sometimes/most of the time”

2.2. Statistical Analyses

Preliminary analyses involved testing for possible correlations among the violence-related variables, namely being physically attacked and being involved in physical fights. Spearman correlation tests using the non-dichotomized violence variables showed, however, that they were only moderately correlated with bullying (physically attacked = 0.44; physical fighting = 0.41). The subsequent analyses were carried out stepwise in three phases. We first examined the distribution of the selected independent variables within the trichotomized dependent variable categories. Then, we screened for statistically significant associations using Pearson’s chi-squared for categorical variables and Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) for the continuous variable age. The results for the bivariate analyses were reported as proportions along with their chi-squared values measuring group differences. The result of the F-test was used for ANOVA.
We then used multinomial logistic regression (MLR) to model the relationship between the dependent and independent variables. MLR is an extension of binary logistic regression, which allows for the prediction of the probabilities of more than two outcomes of a categorically distributed dependent variable. Given that our dependent variable had three categories, MLR was selected over binary regression [48]. Two MLR models were created. In the first, all variables that were significant at the bivariate level were then entered separately into an MLR model, which adjusted for age and sex. In the second model, all variables were entered simultaneously into one model, which adjusted for each of the included covariates. The results are reported as relative risk ratios (RRR). Because the dataset was large, we used 99% confidence intervals (CI). All analyses were performed using Stata 12 (StataCorp, 2011) for Unix [49].

3. Results

Within the recall period, 56% (N = 2661) were bullied at least once. Of these, 15% reported being kicked, pushed or shoved; 11% were made fun of because of their race or color and 10% because of their religion; 4% were made fun of with a comment or joke of a sexual nature; 3% had been left out of activities; 6% had been made fun of about their bodily appearance; and 7% were made fun of in some other way.
In the bivariate analyses (Table 2), we found no significant mean age differences across the three categories of bullying or significant differences by sex. We did however find that the reporting of hunger, injury, truancy and all categories of alcohol and substance use increased the chances of being bullied 1–2 days and three or more days. An inverse relationship was found for those who reported being in a favorable school environment (with respect to peers) and having understanding parents. Violence, such as being involved in a physical fight and being physically attacked, was also observed at higher rates among those who reported bullying victimization.
Table 2. Distribution of selected factors according to categories of bullying among school-attending adolescents in Ghana.
Table 2. Distribution of selected factors according to categories of bullying among school-attending adolescents in Ghana.
VariableBullied 0 Days (N = 2102)Bullied 1–2 Days (N = 1060)Bullied 3 or More Days (N = 1601)F/χ2p-value
Age (SD)14.5 (1.4)14.4 (1.4)14.5 (1.3)2.90.517
Sex (male)53.350.452.82.60.280
Physically attacked19.743.565.6800.0<0.001
Physical fight12.035.953.2732.4<0.001
Alcohol use16.742.464.5886.6<0.001
Alcohol misuse11.433.052.2725.6<0.001
Got into trouble as a result of alcohol15.135.954.8652.1<0.001
Substance use6.4724.446.724.0<0.001
Favorable school environment32.824.221.267.5<0.001
Understanding parents32.421.921.078.6<0.001
Results are based on 4 763 participants that reported information on bullying victimization; SD = standard deviation; F = result of the F-test; χ2 = chi-squared.
The age and sex adjusted MLR results in Table 3 show that all selected variables were significant at the p < 0.01 level. Only two variables (favorable school environment and having understanding parents) were associated with decreases in bullying. Having reported positively concerning peers in school (RRR = 0.73 and RRR = 0.60 for 1–2 days and three or more days of bullying, respectively) and having understanding parents (RRR = 0.60 and RRR = 0.56 for one or two days and three or more days, respectively) were inversely associated with bullying across both categories compared with non-bullied participants. Substance use, in particular, increased the risk of being bullied 1–2 days (RRR = 4.40; CI = 2.88–6.72) or being bullied three or more days (RRR = 12.33; CI = 8.38–18.15).
In the fully-adjusted MLR model (Table 4), 1–2 days of bullying was significantly associated with an increased likelihood of being physically attacked (RRR = 1.81; CI = 1.40–2.35), as well as having been involved in a physical fight (RRR = 2.01; CI = 1.49–2.73). Alcohol, whether with respect to its use (RRR = 1.50; CI = 1.11–2.03) or having problems associated with its use (RRR = 1.45; CI = 1.06–2.00), was also associated with a higher likelihood of reported bullying. Similarly, substance use behavior was found at higher rates among bullied participants (RRR = 1.66; CI = 1.10–2.52). Inversely, we found that those who reported having understanding parents were less likely to report being bullied (RRR = 0.76; CI = 0.60–0.97). After adjusting for all covariates, reporting a favorable school environment did not reach statistical significance (p = 0.439) as in the age- and sex-adjusted model.
Among participants who reported being bullied during three or more days, violence and trauma, being physically attacked (RRR = 2.93; CI = 2.23–3.85), being involved in physical fights (RRR = 2.20; CI = 1.59–3.08) or being injured (RRR = 2.44; CI = 1.83–3.25) were more common. Alcohol use (RRR = 1.81; CI = 1.27–2.57) was higher, while misuse (RRR = 1.51; CI = 0.96–2.40) was not significant after adjustment for all covariates. Getting into trouble in relation to alcohol was more common (RRR = 1.74; CI = 1.33–2.26), as was reporting of hunger (RRR = 1.46; CI = 1.13–1.90) substance use (RRR = 2.54; CI = 1.69–3.81) and truancy (RRR = 1.92; CI = 1.25–2.94).
Table 3. Age- and sex-adjusted analyses of selected variables according to bullying category among adolescents in Ghana.
Table 3. Age- and sex-adjusted analyses of selected variables according to bullying category among adolescents in Ghana.
VariableBullied 1-2 Days RRR CIp-valueBullied 3 or More Days RRR CIp-value
Hunger1.52 (1.19–1.92)<0.0012.65 (2.14–3.28)<0.001
Physically attacked2.96 (2.29–3.82)<0.0017.15 (5.56–9.19)<0.001
Physical fight3.50 (2.55–4.77)<0.0016.71 (5.08–8.86)<0.001
Injury1.91 (1.41–2.59)<0.0015.04 (3.90–6.52)<0.001
Alcohol use3.29 (2.36–4.59)<0.0018.00 (5.83–10.97)<0.001
Alcohol misuse3.37 (2.41–4.70)<0.0017.68 (5.64–10.47)<0.001
Got into trouble as a result of alcohol2.92 (2.28–3.76)<0.0016.50 (5.03–8.40)<0.001
Substance use4.40 (2.88–6.72)<0.00112.33 (8.38–18.15)<0.001
Truancy1.97 (1.34–2.88)<0.0014.96 (3.47–7.10)<0.001
Favorable school environment0.73 (0.56–0.94)0.0020.60 (0.46–0.78)<0.001
Understanding parents0.60 (0.48–0.77)<0.0010.56 (0.42–0.76)<0.001
RRR = relative risk ratio; CI = confidence interval; all results are compared against non-bullied participants; all results are adjusted for age, sex and clustering.
Table 4. Multinomial logistic regression analyses of selected variables according to bullying category among adolescents in Ghana.
Table 4. Multinomial logistic regression analyses of selected variables according to bullying category among adolescents in Ghana.
VariableBullied 1-2 Days RRR (99%CI)p-valueBullied 3 or More Days RRR (99%CI)p-value
Age0.97 (0.91–1.03)0.2311.04 (0.94–1.15)0.327
Sex (male)0.97 (0.76–1.25)0.7901.14 (0.86–1.49)0.230
Hunger1.15 (0.89–1.47)0.1501.46 (1.13–1.90)<0.001
Physically attacked1.81 (1.40–2.35)<0.0012.93 (2.23–3.85)<0.001
Physical fight2.01 (1.49–2.73)<0.0012.20 (1.59–3.08)<0.001
Injury1.30 (0.95–1.77)0.0322.44 (1.83–3.25)<0.001
Alcohol use1.50 (1.11–2.03)0.0011.81 (1.27–2.57)<0.001
Alcohol misuse1.37 (0.98–1.91)0.0161.51 (0.96–2.40)0.020
Got into trouble as a result of alcohol1.45 (1.06–2.00)0.0031.74 (1.33–2.26)<0.001
Substance use1.66 (1.10–2.52)0.0022.54 (1.69–3.81)<0.001
Truancy1.15 (0.75–1.74)0.3971.92 (1.25–2.94)<0.001
Favorable school environment0.92 (0.69–1.21)0.4390.84 (0.58–1.20)0.201
Understanding parents0.76 (0.60–0.97)0.0040.90 (0.65–1.24)0.402
RRR = relative risk ratio; CI = confidence interval; all results are compared against non-bullied participants; results are adjusted for all variables in the table.

4. Discussion

The prevalence of bullying was relatively higher among Ghanaian adolescents compared to those reported among their counterparts in Seychelles (38.8%) [47], Uganda (14.9%), Kenya (31.6%), Morocco (12.0%), Botswana (21.7%) [33], Greenland [50] and elsewhere [19,39]. However, the prevalence was lower than those found in a few other studies, including among Chilean adolescents 54% [33] and in some European countries [51,52]. There is evidence that bullying is correlated with depression [53]. The high prevalence of bullying found in this study therefore calls for the need for effective bullying prevention interventions in order to protect youth from depression and prevent other bullying-related health problems.
Data from Kenya, Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and five other African countries [54] have shown that among youth, the risk of bullying increased if they indulged in health compromising behaviors. Similarly, Fleming and Jacobsen [33] found that tobacco use, alcohol use, drug use and engaging in sexual intercourse were associated with the probability of being bullied among adolescents in several LMICs. In this study, alcohol use and misuse and other health damaging behaviors, including drug use, were found to increase the chances of being bullied, thus confirming these previous studies. A number of hypotheses can be reflected upon regarding the relationship between bullying and health compromising behaviors among adolescents. The link between bullying and problematic alcohol use has been documented among various adolescent populations [55,56]. While most of these studies have been cross-sectional, the most commonly cited hypothesis regarding this association is that it is likely a coping mechanism among those who experience the stress, shame and humiliation of being bullied [57]. Conversely, problematic alcohol use is also more often reported among those adolescents who bully others. Access to alcoholic beverages in recent years has increased in African settings. Weak legislation around the protection of minors from the harmful effects of alcohol, as well as poor enforcement are likely to further exacerbate this issue in the future [58].
Understanding the direction and the mechanism linking health compromising behaviors and bullying is vital for a health promotion strategy that aims at preventing bullying.
Both being physically attacked and being seriously injured were associated with the probability of being bullied. Physical attack when repeated over time is in itself bullying, and suffering injury may expose one to bullying and can, as well, be a consequence of bullying. The pathway linking physical attack or injury and bullying is therefore unclear. Future studies should explore these mechanisms; particularly combining qualitative interviews with questionnaires will increase our understanding of the relationship between these variables.
Truancy has been shown to increase the chances of being bullied [45,59]. Our study confirmed this in that a higher probability of being bullied was found among adolescents who were truants at school. Truancy may reflect several circumstances of an adolescent, particularly in a poor country, like Ghana, including socioeconomic conditions, parental control, as well as health. In this regards, the relationship between truancy and bullying found here could also mirror these circumstances of the children. On the other hand, it is possible that bullied adolescents shy away from school for fear of being bullied.
Hunger was found to be higher among those who reported being bullied. Hunger epitomizes the socioeconomic conditions of the family. Thus, similar to the relationship between bullying and truancy, as well as the relationship between deprivation and bullying found in a previous study from Sub-Saharan Africa [60], our finding confirms the risk of bullying among adolescents who might be living in unfavorable socioeconomic circumstances.

Strengths and Limitations

The results in this study are strengthened by several features. The sample was representative of all school-attending adolescents aged 11–16 years in Ghana with a sample size large enough to detect statistically significant differences. The survey questionnaire used had been validated in a number of cross-cultural settings, and participants were ensured of the anonymity of their responses. However, the results must still be interpreted in light of several limitations. The cross-sectional nature of the data does not allow for interpretations of causality. The questionnaire was not administered to adolescents who were not present on the day of the survey, which means that the study remains silent on their characteristics. All data used were self-reported, which, even in an anonymous survey, is subject to social-desirability and non-response bias. Despite being designed to be administered cross-culturally, there may have been some questions that were interpreted differently from their original intent. Finally, missing data on responses for bullying were also an important limitation in this study; however, non-response tends to drive associations to the null.

5. Conclusions

Bullying among Ghanaian adolescents is high, even when compared with similar settings in the SSA region. The school environment may prove to be a viable environment for intervention. School health measures, for example, may be designed to simultaneously target risk behaviors and encourage an appreciation of differences among school attendees. Such interventions would benefit by being implemented in mixed age, mixed gender settings. Intervention opportunities might be particularly beneficial if they are also accompanied by interventions designed to reduce health compromising behaviors generally, such as substance and alcohol use and misuse.


The author’s would like to thank the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Atlanta, GA, USA) and the World Health Organization (Geneva, Switzerland). We would also like to thank all of the in-country survey officers and participants who took part in the study.

Author Contributions

Emmanuel O. Acquah conceived of the study, participated in the design and compiled the various sections of the manuscript written by the authors as the first draft of the complete manuscript. Michael L. Wilson performed the statistical analysis in consultation with the co-authors, assisted in the interpretation of the results and critically reviewed the manuscript. David T. Doku critically reviewed the manuscript, assisted in the data analysis and interpretation of the results and participated in the manuscript’s revision in consultation with the co-authors.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.


  1. Peter K. Smith, and David Thompson. Practical Approaches to Bullying. London: David Fulton, 1991. [Google Scholar]
  2. Crick R. Nicki. “Engagement in gender normative versus non-normative forms of aggression: Links to social-psychological adjustment.” Developmental Psychology 33 (1997): 610–17. [Google Scholar]
  3. Dan Olweus. “Victimization by peers: Antecedents and long-term outcomes.” In Social Withdrawal, Inhibition, and Shyness in Childhood. Edited by Kenneth H. Rubin and Jens B. Asendorpf. Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., 1993, pp. 315–41. [Google Scholar]
  4. David Thompson, and Sonia Sharp. Improving Schools: Establishing and Integrating Whole School Behaviour Policies. London: David Fulton, 1999. [Google Scholar]
  5. Tonja R. Nansel, Wendy Craig, Mary D. Overpeck, Gitanjali Saluja, and June W. Ruan. “Cross-national consistency in the relationship between bullying behaviors and psychosocial adjustment.” Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine 158 (2004): 730–36. [Google Scholar]
  6. Riittakerttu Kaltiala-Heino, Matti Rimpela, Paivi Rantanen, and Arja Rimpela. “Bullying at school—An indicator of adolescents at risk for mental disorder.” Journal of Adolescence 23 (2000): 661–74. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. Andrew Owusu, Peter Hart, Britney Oliver, and Minsoo Kang. “The association between bullying and psychological health among senior high school students in Ghana, West Africa.” Journal of School Health 81 (2011): 231–38. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. Klomek A. Brunstein, Frank Marrocco, Majorie Kleinman, Irvin S. Schonfeld, and Madelyn S. Gould. “Bullying, depression, and suicidality in adolescents.” Journal of the Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychology 46 (2007): 40–49. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. WHO. “Global School-Based Student Health Survey (GSHS) 2012.” Available online: (accessed on 3 December 2012).
  10. Williams A. Corsaro, and Donna Eder. “Children’s Peer Cultures.” Annual Review of Sociology 16 (1990): 197–220. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  11. Donna Eder. “The cycle of popularity: Interpersonal relations among female adolescents.” Sociology of Education 58 (1985): 154–65. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  12. Molcho Michal, Wendy Craig, Pernille Due, William Pickett, Yossi Harel-Fisch, and Mary Overpeck. “Cross-national time trends in bullying behaviour 1994–2006: Findings from Europe and North America.” International Journal of Public Health 54 (2009): 225–34. [Google Scholar]
  13. Niina Junttila, Marja Vauras, Paivi Niemi, and Eero Laakkonen. “Multisource assessed social competence as a predictor for children’s and adolescents’ later loneliness, social anxiety, and social phobia.” Journal of Educational Research Online 4 (2012): 73–98. [Google Scholar]
  14. Murray B. Stein, and Dan J. Stein. “Social anxiety disorder.” The Lancet 371 (2008): 1115–25. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  15. Wendy Craig, Yossi Harel-Fisch, Haya Fogel-Grinvald, Suzanne Dostaler, Jorn Hetland, Bruce Simons-Morton, Michal Molcho, Margarida Gaspar de Mato, Mary Overpeck, Pernille Due, and et al. “A Cross-national profile of bullying and victimization among adolescents in 40 countries.” International Journal of Public Health 54 (2009): 216–24. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  16. Hui Wang, Xiaolan Zhou, Ciyong Lu, Jie Wu, Xueqing Deng, Lingyao Hong, Xue Gao, and Yuan He. “Adolescent bullying involvement and psychosocial aspects of family and school life: A Cross-sectional study from Guangdong province in China.” PLoS One 7 (2012): e38619. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  17. Ji-Kang Chen, and Ron Avi Astor. “School violence in Taiwan: Examining how Western risk factors predict school violence in an Asian culture.” Journal of Interpersonal Violence 25 (2010): 1388–410. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  18. Rachel C. Vreeman, and Aaron E. Carroll. “A Systematic rview of school-based interventions to prevent bullying.” Archives of Pediatrics. & Adolescent Medicine 161 (2007): 78–88. [Google Scholar]
  19. Audrey L. Spriggs, Ronald J. Iannotti, Tonja R. Nansel, and Denise L. Haynie. “Adolescent bullying involvement and perceived family, peer and school relations: Commonalities and differences across race/ethnicity.” Journal of Adolescent Health 41 (2007): 283–93. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  20. Hsi-Sheng Wei, James Herbert Williams, Ji-Kang Chen, and Hsiu-Yu Chang. “The effects of individual characteristics, teacher practice, and school organizational factors on students’ bullying: A multilevel analysis of public middle schools in Taiwan.” Children and Youth Services Review 32 (2010): 137–43. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  21. Adrienne Nishina, Jaana Juvonen, and Melissa R. Witkow. “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will make me feel sick: The psychosocial, somatic, and scholastic consequences of peer harassment.” Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology 34 (2005): 37–48. [Google Scholar]
  22. Jeffrey G. Parker, and Steven R. Asher. “Friendship and friendship quality in middle childhood: Links with peer group acceptance and feelings of loneliness and social dissatisfaction.” Developmental Psychology 29 (1993): 611–21. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  23. Williams M. Bukowski. “What does it mean to say that aggressive children are competent or incompetent? ” Merrill-Palmer Quarterly 49 (2003): 390–400. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  24. Stephen R. Asher, and John D. Coie. Peer Rejection in Childhood. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1990. [Google Scholar]
  25. Andrew F. Newcomb, William M. Bukowski, and Linda Pattee. “Children’s peer relations: A meta-analytic review of popular, rejected, neglected, controversial, and average sociometric status.” Psychological Bulletin 113 (1993): 99–128. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  26. Dana L. Haynie, Richard J. Petts, David Maimon, and Alex R. Piquero. “Exposure to violence in adolescence and precocious role exits.” Journal of Youth and Adolescence 38 (2009): 269–86. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  27. Yi-juan Qiao, Yi Xing, Jia-li Duan, Cheng-xu Bai, Yong-ping Pan, Yong-qiang Cui, and Jun-hua Kong. “Prevalence and associated factors of school physical violence behaviors among middle school students in Beijing.” Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi 31 (2010): 510–12. [Google Scholar] [PubMed]
  28. S. Cui, Y. Cheng, Z. Xu, Dafang Chen, and Yan Wang. “Peer Relationships and Suicide Ideation and Attempts among Chinese Adolescents.” Child: Care, Health and Development 37 (2011): 692–702. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  29. Jing Wang, Ronald J. Iannotti, and Tonja R. Nansel. “School bullying among adolescents in the United States: Physical, verbal, relational, and cyber.” Journal of Adolescent Health 45 (2009): 368–75. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  30. Alice A. Hazemba, Adamson S. Muula, and Emmanuel Rudatsikira. “Prevalence and correlates of being bullied among in-school adolescents in Beijing: Results from the 2003 Beijing Global School-Based Health Survey.” Annals of General Psychiatry 7 (2008): 6. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  31. Gwen M. Glew, Ming-Yu Fan, Wayne Katon, Frederick P. Rivara, and Mary A. Kernic. “Bullying, psychosocial adjustment, and academic performance in elementary school.” Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine 159 (2005): 1026–31. [Google Scholar]
  32. Sarah Woods, and Dieter Wolke. “Direct and relational bullying among primary school children and academic achievement.” Journal of School Psychology 42 (2004): 135–55. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  33. Lila C. Fleming, and Kathryn H. Jacobsen. “Bullying among middle-school students in Low and Middle Income Countries.” Health Promotion International 25 (2010): 73–84. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  34. Pernille Due, Juan Merlo, Yossi Harel-Fisch, Mogens Trab Damsgaard, Bjørn E. Holstein, Jorn Hetland, Candace Currle, Saoirse Nie Gabhainn, Margarida Gaspar de Matos, and John Lynch. “Socioeconomic inequality in exposure to bullying during adolescence: A comparative, cross-sectional, multilevel study in 35 countries.” American Journal of Public Health 99 (2009): 907–14. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  35. Frank J. Elgar, Wendy Craig, William Boyce, Antony Morgan, and Rachel Vella-Zarb. “Income inequality and school bullying: Multilevel study of adolescents in 37 countries.” Journal of Adolescent Health 45 (2009): 351–59. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  36. Danielle EMC Jansen, René Veenstra, Johan Ormel, Frank C. Verhulst, and Sijmen A. Reijneveld. “Early risk factors for being a bully, victim, or bully/victim in late elementary and early secondary education. The longitudinal TRAILS Study.” BMC Public Health 11 (2011): 440. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  37. Pauline W. Jansen, Marina Verlinden, Anke D. Berkel, Cathelijne Mieloo, Jan van der Ende, René Veenstra, Frank C. Verhulst, Wilma Jansen, and Henning Tiemeier. “Prevalence of bullying and victimization among children in early elementary school: Do family and school neighbourhood socioeconomic status matter? ” BMC Public Health 12 (2012): 494. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed][Green Version]
  38. Pernille Due, Ebba Holme Hansen, Juan Merlo, Anette Andersen, and Bjørn E. Holstein. “Is victimization from bullying associated with medicine use among adolescents? A nationally representative cross-sectional survey in Denmark.” Pediatrics 120 (2007): 110–17. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  39. Kellie E. Carlyle, and Kenneth J. Steinman. “Demographic differences in the prevalence, co-occurrence, and correlates of adolescent bullying at school.” Journal of School Health 77 (2007): 623–29. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  40. Neta Peleg-Oren, Gabriel A. Cardenas, Mary Comerford, and Sandro Galea. “An association between bullying behaviors and alcohol use among middle school students.” The Journal of Early Adolescence 29 (2010): 1869–76. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  41. Mujgan Alikasifoglu, Ethem Erginoz, Oya Ercan, Omer Uysal, and Deniz Albayrak-Kaymak. “Bullying behaviours and psychosocial health: Results from a cross-sectional survey among high school students in Istanbul, Turkey.” European Journal of Pediatrics 166 (2007): 1253–60. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  42. Holan Liang, Alan J. Flisher, and Carl J. Lombard. “Bullying, violence, and risk behavior in South African school students.” Child Abuse & Neglect 31 (2007): 161–71. [Google Scholar]
  43. Emmanuel Opoku Acquah, Jennifer K. Lloyd, Laura Davis, and Michael L. Wilson. “Adolescents physical fighting in Ghana, their demographic and social characteristics.” Social Sciences 3 (2014): 227–41. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  44. Enrique Chaux, Andrés Molano, and Paola Podlesky. “Socio-economic, Socio-political and Socio-emotional variables explaining school bullying: A country-wide multilevel analysis.” Aggressive Behavior 35 (2009): 520–29. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  45. Seter Siziya, Adamson S. Muula, and Emmanuel Rudatsikira. “Prevalence and correlates of truancy among adolescents in Swaziland: Findings from the Global School-Based Health Survey.” Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health 1 (2007): 15. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  46. Silvania Suely Caribé de Araújo Andrade, Renata Tiene de Carvalho Yokota, Naíza Nayla Bandeira de Sá, Marta Maria Alves da Silva, Wildo Navegantes de Araújo, Márcio Dênis Medeiros Mascarenhas, and Deborah Carvalho Malta. “Association between physical violence, consumption of alcohol and other drugs, and bullying among Brazilian adolescents.” Cadernos de Saúde Pública 28 (2012): 1725–36. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  47. Michael L. Wilson, Pascal Bovet, Bharathi Viswanathan, and Joan-Carles Suris. “Bullying among adolescents in a Sub-Saharan Middle-Income setting.” Journal of Adolescent Health 51 (2012): 96–98. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  48. Sania Shakoor, Sara R. Jaffee, Lucy Bowes, Isabelle Ouellet-Morin, Penelope Andreou, Francesca Happé, Terrie E. Moffitt, and Louise Arseneault. “A prospective longitudinal study of children’s theory of mind and adolescent involvement in bullying.” Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 53 (2012): 254–61. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  49. Vakhtang Tchantchaleishvili, and Jan D. Schmitto. “Preparing a scientific manuscript in Linux: Today’s possibilities and limitations.” BMC Research Notes 4 (2011): 434. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  50. Christina Schnohr, and Birgit Wolmer-Larsen Niclasen. “Bullying among Greenlandic schoolchildren: Development since 1994 and relations to health and health behavior.” International Journal of Circumpolar Health 65 (2006): 305–12. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  51. Ina Borup, and Bjørn E. Holstein. “Schoolchildren who are victims of bullying report benefit from health dialogues with the school health nurse.” Health Education Journal 66 (2007): 58–67. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  52. Yasemin K. Kepenekci, and Şakir Çınkır. “Bullying among Turkish high school students.” Child Abuse & Neglect 30 (2006): 193–204. [Google Scholar]
  53. Riittakerttu Kaltiala-Heino, and Sari Fröjd. “Correlation between bullying and clinical depression in adolescent patients.” Adolescent Health, Medicine and Therapeutics 2 (2011): 37–44. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  54. David W. Brown, Leanne Riley, Alexander Butchart, and Laura Kann. “Bullying among youth from eight African countries and associations with adverse health behaviors.” Pediatric Health 2 (2008): 289–99. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
  55. Michaela M. Bucchianeri, Marla E. Eisenberg, Melanie M. Wall, Niva Piran, and Dianne Neumark-Sztainer. “Multiple types of harassment: Associations with emotional well-being and unhealthy behaviors in adolescents.” Journal of Adolescents Health 54 (2014): 724–29. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  56. Cheng-Fang Yen, Pinchen Yang, Peng-Wei Wang, Huang-Chi Lin, Tai-Ling Liu, Yu-Yu Wu, and Tze-Chun Tang. “Association between school bullying levels/types and mental health problems among Taiwanese adolescents.” Comprehensive Psychiatry 55 (2014): 405–13. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  57. Lauren R. Toppera, Natalie Castellanos-Ryanb, Clare Mackieb, and Patricia J. Conrod. “Adolescent bullying victimisation and alcohol-related problem behaviour mediated by coping drinking motives over a 12 month period.” Addictive Behavior 36 (2011): 6–13. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  58. Charles D.H. Parry, Bronwyn Myersa, Neo K Morojelea, Alan J Flisherb, Arvin Bhanac, Hilton Donsond, and Andreas Plüddemanna. “Trends in adolescent alcohol and other drug use: Findings from three sentinel sites in South Africa (1997–2001).” Journal of Adolescence 27 (2004): 429–40. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  59. Ken Rigby. “Consequences of bullying in schools.” The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry/La Revue Canadienne de Psychiatrie 48 (2003): 583–90. [Google Scholar]
  60. Lucie Cluver, Lucy Bowes, and Frances Gardner. “Risk and protective factors for bullying victimization among AIDS-affected and vulnerable children in South Africa.” Child Abuse & Neglect 34 (2010): 793–803. [Google Scholar]

Share and Cite

MDPI and ACS Style

Acquah, E.O.; Wilson, M.L.; Doku, D.T. Patterns and Correlates for Bullying among Young Adolescents in Ghana. Soc. Sci. 2014, 3, 827-840.

AMA Style

Acquah EO, Wilson ML, Doku DT. Patterns and Correlates for Bullying among Young Adolescents in Ghana. Social Sciences. 2014; 3(4):827-840.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Acquah, Emmanuel O., Michael L. Wilson, and David T. Doku. 2014. "Patterns and Correlates for Bullying among Young Adolescents in Ghana" Social Sciences 3, no. 4: 827-840.

Article Metrics

Back to TopTop