• Can Friendship Quality, Resilience, Social Anxiety and Victimisation Predict Self-Esteem?

      Boulton, Mike; Simpson, Hannah (University of Chester, 2017)
      Self-esteem is regarded as being fundamental for child and adolescent development. Self-esteem has been found to be at its lowest among young people and tends to fluctuate throughout adolescence. Despite this, little is known about the specific factors which may lead to a change in levels of self-esteem among youths. Current research aimed to investigate the relationship between four predictor variables (friendship quality, resilience, Social Anxiety and victimisation) and the dependent variable (self-esteem). Data was collected from school students aged between 10 and 16 years, from various schools across the United Kingdom. Students’ completed and online questionnaire, responding to statements using a Likert-scale response system. Data was analysed using a multiple regression, which was used to examine whether as a collection, the predictor variables could predict self-esteem. Which was followed by a series of four hierarchical multiple regression tests. The hierarchical regression tests allowed researchers to examine the unique contribution each predictor variable made towards the variance shared with self-esteem. Social Anxiety was found to be the most important unique predictor of self-esteem, accounting for 6% of the variance. It was therefore highlighted that Social Anxiety should be the first factor schools consider in their attempts to increase student levels of self-esteem. Intervention needs to be tailored towards individual needs. Future research should include moderation analyses in order to examine the relationship between the predictor variables and dependent variable (for example, age and gender).
    • Causes and Consquences of Victimisation: Associations between Social Anxiety, Self-Esteem, Friendship Quality and Gender.

      Boulton, Mike; Breen, Cara J. (University of Chester, 2017)
      Bulling in schools is a worldwide issue and its consequences have been found to be detrimental to young people’s lives (Anderson et al, 2015). To provide a further insight into victimisation, the current study specifically looked at social anxiety, self-esteem and friendship quality as possible consequences and risk factors for being a victim of bullying. To accomplish this, 654 participants consisting of 327 females and 281 males from 6 schools across the U.K and Gibraltar engaged in an online questionnaire. It was concluded that not only does victimisation contribute to levels of social anxiety and low self-esteem, but also that social anxiety, low self-esteem and friendship quality predicts victimisation. As a result, demonstrating that these variables are both consequences and risk factors of victimisation and suggests a possible “cycle” involved. Gender differences in victimisation were also explored. Although no significant gender difference was found for overall victimisation, there were clear differences in the various subtypes of bullying. Specifically, that males were more likely to suffer from physical bullying whereas females were more at risk of indirect and cyberbullying. A practical implication of the results concluded in this investigation is the need for intervention strategies that aim to target the victim’s well-being, such as anxiety levels and self-esteem. As a result, this will in turn help to weaken the victimisation cycle.