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Title: Cyber-bullying among university students : concurrent relations to belief in a just world and to empathy
Author(s): Donat, MatthiasLook up in the Integrated Authority File of the German National Library
Willisch, Anna
Wolgast, AnettLook up in the Integrated Authority File of the German National Library
Issue Date: 2022
Type: Article
Language: English
Abstract: The aim of this study was to investigate concurrent relations of belief in a just world (BJW), justice experiences, and empathy to cyber-bullying perpetration and victimization. Our theoretical framework contained a distinction between personal and general BJW and between affective and cognitive empathy. Due to theory and recent research, we expected students’ BJW, lecturer and fellow student justice, and empathy to relate negatively to cyber-bullying perpetration. Furthermore, BJW and academic justice experiences are also expected to negatively relate to cyber-bullying victimization. In order to test our hypotheses, we conducted a cross-sectional questionnaire study with N = 663 German university students (Mage = 22.6, SDage = 3.5; 68% female). Gender, internet use, and social desirability were considered as control variables. A structural equation model showed that students’ personal BJW, academic justice experiences, and both empathy dimensions but not general BJW negatively related to cyber-bullying perpetration. Additionally, students’ personal BJW and academic justice experiences but not general BJW or empathy were associated with cyber-bullying victimization. Male students and those with a low social desirability were more likely to report cyber-bullying perpetration and victimization. Altogether, not only university students’ personal BJW and empathy but also their academic justice experiences related to cyber-bullying perpetration or victimization. Thus, researchers should develop strategies aiming to prevent or reduce cyber-bullying. Those should simultaneously foster students’ personal BJW and empathy as well as an academic environment characterized by just behavior of lecturers and students.
Open Access: Open access publication
License: (CC BY 4.0) Creative Commons Attribution 4.0(CC BY 4.0) Creative Commons Attribution 4.0
Sponsor/Funder: Publikationsfonds MLU
Journal Title: Current psychology
Publisher: Springer
Publisher Place: New York, NY
Original Publication: 10.1007/s12144-022-03239-z
Appears in Collections:Open Access Publikationen der MLU

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