Australian Journal of Guidance and Counselling

Articles

Cyberbullying at School: Good Practice and Legal Aspects in the United Kingdom

Magdalena Marczaka1 c1 and Iain Coynea2

a1 Institute of Work, Health & Organisations, Nottingham University, St Andrews Healthcare, United Kingdom. lwxmim@nottingham.ac.uk

a2 Institute of Work, Health & Organisations, Nottingham University, Nottingham University, United Kingdom.

Abstract

Cyberbullying at school has emerged as a new, electronic form of bullying and harassment and is recognised as a growing problem all over the world. The ability to use cyberspace to bully others means that harassment, rumours and intimidation can reach a much wider audience. Although research has not as yet explored fully the consequences of either cyber-victimisation or cyberbullying, it would appear that they may be detrimental to the health of young people, suggesting the need for policies and interventions, which some European countries (e.g., Germany, Luxemburg, Belgium and the United Kingdom) have attempted to undertake. Currently, however, only the United States has implemented specific laws that treat cyberbullying as a criminal offence per se. After briefly considering the literature on cyberbullying this article will focus on the legal, regulatory and good practice frameworks for controlling cyberbullying in UK educational contexts.

Keywords

  • traditional bullying;
  • cyberbullying;
  • online harassment;
  • law

Correspondence

c1 Address for Correspondence: Magdalena Marczak, 16 Framefield Drive, Solihull, B91 2SR, UK.