Date

2-2014

Department

School of Education

Degree

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Chair

Billie Holubz

Keywords

cyber harassment, educator abuse, electronic abuse, electronic bullying, online harassment, teacher abuse

Disciplines

Educational Administration and Supervision | Other Education | Teacher Education and Professional Development

Abstract

The abuse of individuals through electronic means, typically of students by other students, has been researched extensively. The electronic abuse of other individuals through electronic means has received a dearth of research attention. The purpose of this qualitative transcendental phenomenological study was to explore, describe, and expand the knowledge base regarding the cyber harassment of adult educators by students or other adults. The study was conducted in three rural Georgia public school systems and gave voice to educators' cyber harassment experiences. Co-researchers were identified through a short electronic survey, and the experiences of consenting participants were documented through a focus group, individual interviews, and guided journal reflections. Results indicated that the educators are, in fact, experiencing cyber harassment, and it does have negative, lasting effects. Two overarching themes present throughout the data analysis included the verification and validation of the phenomenon of cyber harassment and the unpreparedness of north Georgia educators to deal with it.