The dyadic matches of bullying and victimization: Testing a dual perspective theory

René Veenstra, Siegwart Lindenberg, Bonne J.H. Zijlstra, Andrea F. de Winter, Frank C. Verhulst, Johan Ormel

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Many researchers have argued for a conceptualization of the dyad as the unit of analysis to understand relationships among classmates, but there has been little response so far. We identified the characteristics of bully-victim matches using nominations of who bullies who and who is victimized by whom and analyzing binary network data with nominator, target, and dyadic covariates, and random effects (p2 model). We viewed bullying and victimization separately from the point of view of the bully and the victim using a goal-framing approach to predict the characteristics of the match. The two perspectives were highly complementary. The probability of a bully-victim relationship is higher if the bully is more dominant than the victim, and if the victim is more vulnerable than the bully and more rejected by the class. In a bully-victim dyad, boys were more often the bullies. We did not find a sex effect for victimization. Liking reduced and disliking increased the probability of a bully-victim relationship.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherWODC, Ministerie van Justitie
Number of pages34
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • elementary school students
  • social networks
  • victimization
  • peer relations
  • bullying

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