Peer Aggression and Bullying in Australian Schools

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This study sought to enlighten our understanding of bullying as well as peer aggression, and the associated harm experienced by young people in Australia. Over 800 middle-school students, aged 11-16 completed the purpose-built peer aggression and well-being questionnaire that included the SAVQ (Skrzypiec, 2015) and an open-ended qualitative question about the nature of student interactions. Study results indicated that just over half of the Australian students had not been harmed through peer aggression at school, while 4.8% were identifed as harming others, while they themselves were not harmed. Nearly one in three students were victimised, but had no intention of harmful retaliation, although a small proportion (3%) were bullied and also bullied others. While much of the peer aggression was described as “harmless banter”, a substantial proportion was harmful – “for some people it kills them inside”. This study recommends that teacher professional development, and more informed resources about peer aggression should be made available if peer aggression is to be curbed in Australian schools.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA Global Perspective of Young Adolescents' Peer Aggression and Well-being
Subtitle of host publicationBeyond Bullying
EditorsGrace Skrzypiec, Mirella Wyra, Eleni Didaskalou
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherRoutledge, Taylor and Francis
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9780429426797
ISBN (Print)9781138386518
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jul 2019


  • bullying
  • peer aggression
  • Australia
  • Australian schools


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