Objective: Bullying is a serious public health problem that may include verbal or physical injury as well as social isolation or exclusion. As a result, research is needed to establish a database for policies and interventions designed to prevent bullying and its negative effects. This paper presented a case study that contributed to the literature by describing an intervention for bullies that has implications for research, practice and related policies regarding bullying.
Methods: An individualized intervention for an identified bully was implemented using the Participatory Culture-Specific Intervention Model (PCSIM; Nastasi, Moore, & Varjas, 2004) with a seventh-grade middle school student. Ecological and culture-specific perspectives were used to develop and implement the intervention that included psychoeducational sessions with the student and consultation with the parent and school personnel. A mixed methods intervention design was used with the following informants: the target student, the mother of the student, a teacher and the school counselor. Qualitative data included semi-structured interviews with the parent, teacher and student, narrative classroom observations and evaluation/feedback forms filled out by the student and interventionist. Quantitative data included the following quantitative surveys (i.e., Child Posttraumatic Stress Reaction Index [CPTS-RI] and the Behavior Assessment Scale for Children, 2nd Edition). Both qualitative and quantitative data were used to evaluate the acceptability, integrity and efficacy of this intervention.
Results: The process of intervention design, implementation and evaluation are described through an illustrative case study. Qualitative and quantitative findings indicated a decrease in internalizing, externalizing and bullying behaviors as reported by the teacher and the mother, and a high degree of acceptability and treatment integrity as reported by multiple stakeholders.
Conclusion: This case study provided important contributions by describing an intervention that is targeted to specific needs of the bully by designing culture specific interventions and working with the student’s unique environmental contexts. Additional contributions included the use of mixed methods to document acceptability, integrity and efficacy of an intervention with documented positive effects in these areas. In addition, implications for policy and practice related to the treatment of students identified as bullies and future research needs are discussed. [West J Emerg Med 2011; XX(X)XX-XX].