School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Kenneth R Tierce


Bullying, Bully-Victim, Cyber Aggression, Cyberbullying, Cyber Harassment, Phenomenology


Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Educational Methods | Educational Psychology | Other Education | Student Counseling and Personnel Services


The purpose of this transcendental phenomenological study was to understand the experiences of university students, aged 18 to 50, in a suburban Atlanta university who have self-identified as perpetrators of cyberbullying. The three research questions that guided this study sought to determine how students perceive their cyberbullying behavior impacts their peers, how students explain their motivation to cyberbully their peers, and how their experiences led to perpetrating acts of cyberbullying. Experiences were examined that may be contributing factors for cyberbullying. Bandura’s social cognitive theory and the concept of moral disengagement of cyberbullies was examined through the research questions as well. This study utilized 11 participants, identified through purposive sampling, and a qualitative, phenomenological design to understand the experiences of a cyberbully. Participant interviews, focus groups, and participant reflection journals were used to collect data from university students and high school guidance counselors. The data were analyzed utilizing Moustakas ’seven steps to organizing and analyzing the collected data. Trustworthiness was established through member checking, peer review, and persistent observation.