Author(s)

David FarkasFollow

Date

11-2016

Department

School of Education

Degree

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Chair

John Duryea

Keywords

Cyberbullying, Motives, Perpetrators, Phenomenological, Platforms

Disciplines

Educational Administration and Supervision | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Humane Education | Other Education | Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education

Abstract

The purpose of this phenomenological study was to investigate the underlying cyberbullying motives for 10th grade students at a suburban high school in Southern California. The theory guiding this study is Vygotsky’s Social Development Theory (1978) as it relates to the roles members of a community play in decision making. The study consisted of interviewing 14 sophomore students from a suburban high school in Southern California. At the conclusion of the interviews, six of these students were selected to participate in a focus group based on their identified actions as cyberbullies. Data was analyzed through Moustakas’ seven steps approach. The results of this study produced six themes pertaining to the motives behind the perpetration of cyberbullying: Jealousy, entertainment, joking, revenge, broken relationships, and group affiliation. The findings indicated a strong influence of group affiliation leading to increased motivation to cyberbully. Further research is recommended that informs effective school policy and prevention programs, parental involvement, and the emotional health of both cybervictims and cyberbullies.