Media Violence Effects on Bullying StudiedCategory: Science & Technology
Posted: July 20, 2012 12:57PM
The debate about whether violent video games, movies, and television make children violent has been going on for about as long as I can remember caring. One side staunchly believes these violent media teaches children to be violent while the other has no doubt this premise is false. Well new research out of Iowa State University has concluded the effects violent media have on children is somewhere in the middle, at least when it comes to bullying.
Bullying has been increasing in our schools and researchers are trying to determine how to identify bullies before they attack someone. The Iowa State researchers examined six risk factors of what leads to someone being a bully using a relative weight analysis and found that media violence is indeed a factor, but no different from the others. The other factors were bias toward hostility, low parental involvement, gender, physical victimization and prior physical fights.
Before you start worrying about how many of those factors you or someone you know expresses, no one factor makes you more likely to be a bully. It actually is not until there are three or more of these factors together that the researchers can predict if you will be a bully or not. Of course if you have three of these factors, there is an 80% chance you will be a bully, and a 94% chance if you have all six. Fortunately two of the factors are easy to address as involved parents should also monitor and control the media violence a child is exposed to.