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Bullying incidents in the Philippines continue to emerge and its severity in different cases increases as based on reports in television news. These incidents and acts usually occur in childhood and adolescence, and most of the reported cases happened in a school setting. This stage in children’s development is the time when they meet other people in the school environment and it is the time when the children experience being bullied or the children express their dominance by bullying other students.
As a result, different psychosocial maladjustments may occur as the effect of bullying behaviors, particularly depression. Childhood and adolescent depression must not be underestimated, as it is associated with anxiety disorders and dysthymic, severe behavioral disorders, and substances abuse (Soresi, Nota and Ferrari, 2005). Research has also known that teenage depression often persists, recurs and continues into adulthood, especially if it goes untreated (Kovacs, 1996).
Research defined depression as one of the psychosocial maladjustments that may occur as the resulting effect of negative experience of a child. It is a state of mind manifested by negative mood, low energy, loss of interest in usual activities, pessimism, unrealistic negative thoughts about self and future, and social withdrawal (Matsumoto, 2009). One particular negative experience of a child in a school environment is bullying behaviors. “Bullying is a widespread problem in schools and communities”(Mason, 2008).
It is an unacceptable antisocial behavior that can weaken the quality of the school environment, after student academic and social outcomes, cause victims emotional and psychological trauma, and in extreme cases lead to serious violence (Espelage, et als. , 2003). Bullying behavior can be viewed within two main classifications, direct and relational. Relational bullying involves the manipulation of peer relationship/friendships to inflict harm on others, and it includes name calling, malicious rumor spreading, and social exclusion (Crick and grotpeter, 1995).
In contrast, direct bullying involves physical aggression, such as hitting, kicking, or taking money/belongings (Boulton & Underwood, 1992). There are four distinct character profiles associated with bullying: bully/ victims (both bully and victim), bullies, bully-victims, and neutral children who are characterized as being bystanders (Salmivalli, et al,. 1996). Bullying/victims, involved in the roles of both bully and victim, have been characterized as both provocative (as a victim) and anxious (as a bully). “Bully-victim are introverted and often suffer from anxiety and low self-esteem.
The characteristics of the bully profile are a controversial issue. Theories range from bullies as ‘cool’ and confident planners, to anxious and depressed individuals. Previous research has suggested that these groups are at the highest risk of behavioral problems, and being referred for psychiatric consulation. This study explored the significant relationship between level of bullying incidents in school and depressinon among the identified bullies and bully victims from selected freshman students of Marcelo h. Del Pilar National high School in city of malolos, Bulacan.
It was the researcher’s interest to pursues this topic to help the students, particularly the victims, on preventing this kind of dilemma that effects the quality of their academic and social behavior in school. Also, based on the findings and results of this study, professionals and expert might develop some effective intervention strategies regarding shool bullying incidents. Significance of the study Bullying has been one of the major concern or dilemma in school, particularly in elementary and secondary level. The researcher’s alos believe that bullying will always be a problem, not only in school but alos in the community.
Upon completion, the study will be of importance to the following: Bully- Victims. This study would be of most benefit to victim students. The study would help the victims to know if they are suffering from depression because of being bullied. This study might also help them to understand the measurement of their depression level, and to be aware on the impact of this psychosocial maladjustment on their behavior. Bullies. Through this study, b for the bullies to understand this study for them bullies would be aware of the consequences of bullying other like elevation of depression.
It is important for the bullies to understand this study to stop bullying others, and to be more responsible of their action that might affect, not just to be people on their environment, but more especially themselves . Classroom adviser/teacher. The whole study would help the classroom adviser/teacher to be aware of the resulting problems of school bullying . trough this story, a classroom teacher would be help the school guidance counselor in indentifying the bully or the victims students since the teacher is one who knows well what is happening in a classroom.
This study would also encourage the classroom teacher to give assistance and support to a student involved in bullying. Parents/guardian. This study could help parents or guardians to be more aware on their child’s school behavior, specially if their child is experiencing being bullied (bully-victim)or their child is involved in bullying others. Through this study, parents or guardian could help their child, who was victim, to provide support and understanding of their situation to cope up with the problem. School guide counselor.
This study would directly help the school guidance counselor to come up with an intervention program or support system in helping those bully and victims students and could provide a “Bully Awareness” seminar annually. Through the assistance of classroom adviser, guidance counselor could administer bully identification sales to determine who among the students are bullies and being bullied. Psychologist. Findings of this study would be very relevant to the discipline of psychology in general and to the field of guidance and counseling in particular.
For them to develop an effective program and to help and support the bullies and bully-victims regarding in the level of their depression and other psychosocial maladjustment. Future researcher. The outcome of this study will help other researcher’s enhance their studies. The findings of this study will provide a ready reference that will support their learning in various field. Future studies in various are also possible and will be benefited from the result of this study. SCOPE AND DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The study was limited to the relationship of level of bullying incident in school and depression among identified bullies and bully victims from selected freshmen students, both male and female, of Marcelo H. del Pilar National High School (MHPNHS) in City of Malolos,Bulacan. This study covered the total population of three hundred-seventeen (317) students. Seven (7) out of twenty-four (24) sections were selected through convenience sampling. This seven section all came from equal lower sections. From the total population, one hundred seventy-eight (178) were identified as bully-victim students and one hundred (100) identified bullies.
This students were identified through purposive sampling. The researchers for this study used two (2) adapted instruments from another research wih the similar topic that were context-validated by the experts. The reliability measures of this instrument were also established. These instrument were adolescent peer relations instrument (APRI) (Parada,2000) and Childrens depression inventory (CDI) (kovacs,1992). Relevant theories Two theoretical approaches supported by empirical models hare a common concern with victimizations and harm regardin school bullying.
This are moral development theory and cognitive theory of depression. Cognitive theory of depression can provide insight into how the process of internalization of bullying events could potentially contribute to eventual effects such as depression. According to Aaron beck 1993 themore younthink of the negative experiences, loike being bullied, the more depressed you will be. Beck (chambless,2010) geve an example of a young boy being teased by his friends. He provided an illustration of how internal evaluations of an event can be influential in determining emotional responces.
In this example, beck stated that objective meaning might be that his friends are simply makng fun of him. In this example of a young boy’s internal evaluation might be he is “a weakling” ” they don’t like me” or “I shoud be alone”. Because these negative internalization are often regarded as embarrassing, individual is less likely to these beliefs with others. Since most of adolescents who were targets of bullying were most likely to be socialy isolated, this individuals may be particularly unlikely to have such negative perceptions not knowing by others.
In contrast, those with other opportunities to build social competence may be more likely to demonstrate resilience as they have additional opportunities to have these negative beliefs removed through the help of other. Also drawing from cognitive theory of Aaron Beck, those low in competence or lacking other sources f developing competence may develop negative schemas associated with social experiences. Being the target of bullying may also contribute to a sense of learned helplessness (Chambless, 2010), a cognitive pattern often displayed by individuals with depression.
Those individuals who do not possess opportunities for developing competence may be more prone to learned helplessness. As victims may believe that they are unable to stop the bullying they may also begin to believe that their efforts to affect the outcomes of other situations will be ineffective (Coles, Heimburg and Roth, 2002). If bullying continues for a long period of time, targets of bullying may begin to generalize this sense of incompetence to other areas of their lives which may lead to low self-esteem and a greater likelihood of developing other symptoms of depression during the college years (Smokowski and Holland, 2005).
Some explanations of bullying draw upon an understanding of child development. Kohlberg’s moral development theory asserts that bullying starts in early childhood when individuals begin to express themselves at the expense of others in order to establish their social dominance. They tend at first to do some rude things, for instance by spreading rumors, hitting out others and name-calling,especially those less powerful than themselves, in an attempt to intimidate them.
But as Hawley (1999) posits that as children develop they begin to employ less socially reprehensible ways of dominating others. Thus moral development theory and cognitive theory of depression has a connection in terms of a bullying episode. They complement each other by the influences of either self-internalization of negative experience like bullying or by the moral development perspective of the bullies. This study focused on the relationship between level of school bullying and level of depression among the identified bullies and bully-victims from selected high school freshmen students.
The researchers found it appropriate to use the Moral Development Theory and the Cognitive Theory f Depression as the basis and foundation of this research for the reason that these may answer the problems stated beforehand. Related Literature Definition of School Bullying School violence can be defined as “…encompassing a wide range of activities, including assaults with or without weapons, physical fights, threats or destructive acts other than physical fights; harassment; robbery; dating violence; molestations; rape; bullying; hostile or threatening remarks between group of students and gang violence” (Fischer $ Kettl, 2001).
Bullying is the common form of school violence, and it is on the rise in many countries (U. S. Department of Education, 2002). One quarter of all middle school children were either bully-victims or perpetrators (sometime both) of chronic bullying that include name-calling, punching, slapping, threatening, jeering, and sneering (U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2002). Experts in aggressive behavior believe there is no easy way to stamps out bullying (Beale & Scott, 2001). Bullying has devastating effects on the school atmosphere.
It transforms the perception of school from a safe into a violent place (Laufer & Harel, 2003; Nansel, etal. , 2003, a cited in Rathus, 2006). Even bullies (perpetrator) come to perceive the school as a violent environment (Laufer & Harel,2003 as cited in Rathus, 2006). Olweus (2003) defines bullying as “incident when he or she [Students] is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more other students. “It is a negative action when someone intentionally or even unintentionally inflicts, or attempts to inflict, injury or discomfort upon another, this someone is called the bully.
Bullying can take the form of physical (e. g hitting, pushing, or kicking), verbal (e. g calling names, mocking, saying unpleasant things), or social (e. g spreading false rumors, isolation of others from a group) (Halton District School Board 2010). Rigby (2011) states that, “bullying involves s desire to hurt + hurtful action + a power imbalance + (typically) repetition + an unjust use of power + evident enjoyment by the aggressor (bully) + and a sense of being oppressed on the part of victim.
“The statement clearly defined bullying by enumerating different negative behaviors that are focused toward the victims. Furthermore, Swearer (2011) defines bullying as, “ [Bullying] happens when someone hurts or scares another person on purpose and the person being bullied has a hard time defending himself or herself. Usually, bullying happens over and over.
“ Bullying can also be defined as an action or set of actions where one person or a group of persons verbally or physically harass another person over a prolonged period of time; it implies an imbalance of power and strength between the bully and the victim (Farrington, 1993 as cited in Baldry, 2004). In the Philippines, the House of Representatives has recently approved on third and final reding a bill requiring all elementary and secondary schools to adopt policies that will prevent and address the acts of bulling in their institutions. House Bill 5496, also known as “Anti-Bullying Act of 2012”, seeks to provide students and their parents or guardians awareness of the impact of bullying and how it can be prevented or addressed.
The bill defines bullying as “any severe or repeated use of written, verbal, or electronic expression, or a physicals act or gesture, or any combination by one or more students directed at another student that has the effect of actually causing or placing the latter in a reasonable fear of physical or emotional harm on the rights of the other student at school” (House Bill no. 5496, Sec. 2, 2012). With the approval of the Anti-Bullying Act of 2012, the researchers believed that this will help schools create an environment where children can develop their full potentials without experiencing bullying incidents.
Conclusion The researchers hypothesized that there is a significant relationship gbetween level of school bullying and depression among selected high school freshman students of Marcelo H. del Pilar National High School (MHPNHS). Through the use of descripted-correlation methods and t-test independent samples, the researchers were able to obtain data. These data were treated and analyzed through the use of Statistical Package of Social Sciences, Version 19 (SPSS Ver. 19) From these, the researchers were able to formulated these conclusions.
The selected high school freshman student of Marcelo H. del Pilar National High School, batch 2012-2013, belong for the bullying-Victim Group and an equal number of gender ofor the Bully Group. 2. For the Bully Group, most of the participants had a high level of depression in nterms of Negative Mood, Ineffectiveness and Anhedonia, while in terms of Negative Self Esteen and Interpersonal Problems, participants had a low level of depression. On the other hand, the Bully-Victim group respondents had a low level of depression in terms of Interpersonal Problems, bully-victims gained a high level of depression.
It can also be concluded that there are significant differences on the level of depression between bully group and bully-victim group and were revealed that most of the bully-victims were the one with higher of depression. 3. The Researchers identified 100 bully students from the selected sections. The Researchers conclude that there are lesser bully students than the bully-victims and than the gender is not a factor to say where most of the bullies can come from because of equal distribution. Bully Group was treated as the desired sam0ples of the study by the researchers.
There are the ones who scored 1. 50 or higher in the APRI Scale. 4. The Researchers identified 178 bully-victim students from the selected sections. The Researcher conclude that there are more bully-victim students than the bullies and most of them were female students. This Bully-Victim Group was treted as the desired samples of the study by the researchers. These are the ones who scored 1. 50 or higher in nthe APRI Scale. 5. The Researchers conclude that the first hypothesis must be rejected because there is no significant relationship between Level of Bullying and Depression of the identified bullies.
This means that any level of bullying done by the respondents does not make them feel depressed. This result contradicts with Austin and Joseph’s study in 1996 (as cited by porter, 2010) which documented the relationship between involvement in bullying and mental health problems, specifically depression. 6. The Researchers conclude that the second hypothesis must be accepted because a significant relationship was seen between level of bullying and depression among the identified bully-victims. This means that the more respondents experienced bullying, the more they feel depressed.
This finding is consistent with Uba, Yaacob & Juhari in 2009 confirmed a significant and positive correlation between victimization and depression. Recommendations Based on the conclusion, the following recommendations are presented: 1. For school Administratos, that they could create programs or seminars that will make the students more aware of the resulting negative effects of school bullying acts. They could also implement and give priorities to disseminate the newly passed bill, the “Anti-Bullying Act of 2012”. 2.
For Guidance Counselors, that they should help the students who are involve in bullying incidents through identifying them and by giving a monthly counseling sessions. These sessions would help the counselor to identify who among the students are prone to school bullying incidents that would also help him/her to focus on the specific students. This recommendation is necessary especially for the public high school to strictly implement and make a good guidance center. 3. For the Parents, that they should be the one who first know if their child is being involved in a bullying incident especially outside the school premises.
Through knowing this behavior of a child, the parents could be the first to discipline their own child on how they could prevent bullying incidents. 4. For the Future Researchers, that they can pursue this topic by focusing on a different approach and different treatment to different participants and they should consider additional variables such as stress, anxiety and academic performance. They could use this research as a reference with the same topic. They could also use the instruments used for this study and update it together with the reliability measure.

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