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Olweus Bullying Prevention Program

Blueprints Program Rating: Promising

A bullying prevention program that includes schoolwide, classroom, individual, and community strategies that create a safe and positive school climate, improve peer relations, and increase awareness of and reduce the opportunities and rewards for bullying behavior. This anti-bullying program offers activities designed for use in elementary, middle, junior and high schools.

  • Dan Olweus, Ph.D.
  • University of Bergen
  • UNI Health
  • Pb 7800
  • N-5020
  • Bergen
  • Norway
  • olweus@uni.no
  • Bullying
  • Delinquency and Criminal Behavior
  • Prosocial with Peers
  • Truancy - School Attendance
  • Violent Victimization

    Program Type

    • Bullying Prevention
    • School - Environmental Strategies

    Program Setting

    • School

    Continuum of Intervention

    • Universal Prevention (Entire Population)
    • Selective Prevention (Elevated Risk)

    A bullying prevention program that includes schoolwide, classroom, individual, and community strategies that create a safe and positive school climate, improve peer relations, and increase awareness of and reduce the opportunities and rewards for bullying behavior. This anti-bullying program offers activities designed for use in elementary, middle, junior and high schools.

      Population Demographics

      The sample in the initial evaluation is taken from 112 classes of 4th-7th graders in 42 schools in Bergen, Norway. It is assumed that the sample is representative of the population of 4th-7th graders in the country of Norway. Evaluations in other countries, including the U.S., have also targeted elementary, middle, and high school students.

      Age

      • Late Childhood (5-11) - K/Elementary
      • Early Adolescence (12-14) - Middle School
      • Late Adolescence (15-18) - High School

      Gender

      • Male and Female

      Gender Specific Findings

      • Male
      • Female

      Race/Ethnicity

      • All Race/Ethnicity

      Race/Ethnicity Specific Findings

      • White

      Race/Ethnicity/Gender Details

      The program targets youth of all races and ethnicities but was designed and originally implemented in northern Europe. The program has been evaluated a number of times; some evaluations give few specific details about the ethnicity of participants and the majority do not examine effects by race. Bauer et al. (2007), however, found program effects on relational and physical victimization for white youths only, relative to youths of other ethnicities, in an evaluation of program implementation in Seattle.

      Risk and protective factors have been shown to differ for bullies, victims, and bully-victims.

      • Family
      • School
      • Peer
      • Individual
      Risk Factors
      • Individual: Bullies others*, Early initiation of antisocial behavior, Favorable attitudes towards antisocial behavior, Victim of bullying*
      • Peer: Interaction with antisocial peers
      Protective Factors
      • Individual: Clear standards for behavior*, Problem solving skills, Prosocial behavior, Prosocial involvement, Refusal skills, Rewards for prosocial involvement, Skills for social interaction
      • Peer: Interaction with prosocial peers
      • Family: Parental involvement in education
      • School: Opportunities for prosocial involvement in education, Rewards for prosocial involvement in school

      *Risk/Protective Factor was significantly impacted by the program.

      See also: Olweus Bullying Prevention Program Logic Model (PDF)

      The Olweus Bullying Prevention Program is a multi-level, multi-component program designed to reduce and prevent school bullying in elementary and middle schools. Secondary goals include increased awareness and knowledge about bullying, involvement of teachers and parents in bullying prevention, development of clear rules against bullying and providing support and protection to victims. The program includes school level, classroom level, and individual level components. The school level components consist of an assessment of the nature and prevalence of bullying in the school, the formation of a committee to coordinate the prevention program, and development of a system ensuring adult supervision of students outside of the classroom. Classroom components include defining and enforcing rules against bullying, discussions and activities to reinforce anti-bullying values and norms and active parental involvement in the program. Individual components intervene with students with a history of bullying and/or victimization.

      The Olweus Bullying Prevention Program targets the problem of bullying at three levels: the school, the classroom and the individual. Designed for elementary and middle schools, the program addresses the problem of bullying with multiple strategies at each level. At the school level, students are given an anonymous questionnaire (25-45 minutes long) to assess the nature and prevalence of bullying at the school. The survey is administered in spring of the school year prior to program implementation. Secondly, the school administration convenes a conference day, during which program consultants and school staff discuss findings from the student questionnaire, familiarize themselves with the program and its effects (through discussions with program consultants, handbooks and videos), form a Bullying Prevention Coordinating Committee, and plan for program implementation. The coordinating committee includes representatives from all constituencies involved with the school, i.e. administration, teachers, counselors, health professionals, parents and students. The school level component also involves increased adult supervision of school areas that are frequently the setting for bullying, i.e., the playground, cafeteria and restrooms.

      The classroom level component involves establishing clear and consistently enforced rules against bullying, along with regular class discussions and activities designed to reinforce rules and anti-bullying values and norms. Discussions and activities also present the harm caused by bullying and strategies for preventing it. The program encourages parental involvement through meetings and discussion of the problem and efforts to address it.

      Individual level components include interventions with bullies, victims and their parents. Interventions are designed to ensure the cessation of the bullying behavior and to provide support to victims.

      For both the bully and the victim, the problem of bullying is best addressed through a systematic restructuring of the social environment. Bullying behavior is stopped and redirected by eliminating the opportunities and reward structures for anti-social behavior and encouraging and rewarding pro-social behavior.

      • Person - Environment

      All studies have used quasi-experimental designs. The original Norway study and several subsequent replications used comparisons of adjacent age-cohorts. All but the Toronto, Ireland, and most recent Oslo studies had comparison groups, but none used random assignment to treatment and comparison groups. The primary sources of data for evaluations presented were self-report data using the Bully/Victim Questionnaire or a modified version of it and teacher surveys.

      In the original Norway study and the South Carolina replication, there were reductions in self-reported bullying and antisocial behaviors (theft, vandalism and truancy). Only the Norway study demonstrated reductions in self-reported victimization and improved school climate, as well as teacher and peer reports of bully-victim problems. The outcomes in Norway were found in the first follow-up (8 months after baseline) as well as the second follow-up (20 months after baseline). South Carolina outcomes were significant only after one year of the program, and were not found after two program years. An English study also showed significant decreases in self-reported frequency of bullying. A second U.S. study in Seattle showed no overall effects on physical or relational victimization, however, both types of bullying victimization were significantly reduced among white intervention students, relative to white controls. Other studies were too weak to merit mention of findings.

      • Reductions in self-reported bullying are mixed across multiple evaluations, but generally positive.
      • Reductions in self-reported victimization are mixed across multiple evaluations.
      • Decreases in other forms of delinquency and anti-social behavior, such as theft, vandalism and truancy found in the original Norway study and South Carolina replication.
      • Improvements in positive social relationships found in Norway study.

      The program has been evaluated in multiple settings with mixed results. The first U.S. replication in South Carolina demonstrated mixed results. The population was predominately African-American, poor and lived in areas with high rates of delinquency, suggesting that the program may not be generalizable to populations similar to the one in this study. The 2007 Seattle-based replication furthers this notion, finding that physical and relational bullying victimization was significantly reduced for White treatment youth, versus youth of other ethnicities.

      Other samples used in program evaluations have been representative of the general population from which they came. All but the Norway original evaluation indicated these were ethnically diverse populations. Students' reports of bullying and victimization were significantly reduced, and were generally consistent across gender and grade subgroups. Reductions in other types of delinquency and anti-social behavior, such as school misbehavior and vandalism, were also consistent across studies, where measured, regardless of gender or grade, indicating that that the program was equally effective for boys and girls of various ages (although one small study in one Catholic middle school showed no positive results for boys).

      When all of the evaluation studies are considered, most are weak methodologically. The program has demonstrated some positive results in quasi-experimental studies using an age cohort design, although there are some mixed findings across studies. The studies lacked random assignment of schools to treatment and control samples.

      • Blueprints: Promising

      Norway Original Trial

      Olweus, D. (1993). Bullying at school: What we know and what we can do. Oxford, England: Blackwell.

      Olweus, D. (1992). Bullying among school children: Intervention and prevention. In R.D. Peters, R.J. McMahon, & V.L. Quinsey (eds.), Aggression and violence throughout the life span (pp.100-125). Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications.

      Olweus, D., & Alsaker, F.D. (1991). Assessing change in a cohort-longitudinal study with hierarchical data. In D. Magnusson, L.R. Bergman, G. Rudinger, & B. Torestad (Eds.), Problems and methods in longitudinal research: Stability and change (pp. 107-132). New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.

      Norway Replication

      Olweus, D. (1987).  Schoolyard bullying-grounds for intervention. School Safety, 4, 4-14.

      Amundsen, E. J., & Ravndal, E. (2010). Does successful school-based prevention of bullying influence substance use among 13- to 16-year-olds? Drugs: education, prevention and policy, 17(1), 42-54.

      United States Replications

      Bauer, N.S., Lozano, P., & Rivara, F.P. (2007). The effectiveness of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in public middle schools: A controlled trial. Journal of Adolescent Health, 40, 266-274.

      Bowllan, N. M. (2011). Implementation and evaluation of a comprehensive, school-wide bullying prevention program in an urban/suburban middle school. Journal of School Health, 81(4), 167-173.

      Melton, G.B., Limber, S.P., Cunningham, P., Osgood, D.W., Chambers, J., Flerx, V., Henggeler, S., & Nation, M. (1998). Violence among rural youth. Final report to the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Washington, DC: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

      Schroeder, B. A., Messina, A., Schroeder, D., Good, K., Barto, S., Saylor, J., Masiello, M. (2011). The implementation of a statewide bullying prevention program: Preliminary findings from the field and the importance of coalitions. Health Promotion Practice, March 21, epub.

      Limber, S. P., Olweus, D., Massiello, M., Molnar-Main, S., & Moore, D. (2012). Evaluation of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in a large scale study in Pennsylvania. Unpublished.

      Sheffield, England

      Whitney, I., & Smith, P.K. (1993). A survey of the nature and extent of bullying in junior/middle and secondary schools. Education Research, 35, 3-25.

      Whitney, I., Rivers, I., Smith, P.K., & Sharp, S. (1994). The Sheffield Project: Methodology and findings. In P.K. Smith and S. Sharp (eds.), School bullying: Insights and perspectives (pp. 20-56). London, England: Routledge.

      Eslea, M. (1998). The long-term effectiveness of anti-bullying work in primary schools. Educational Research, 40, 203-218.

      Smith, P.K. (1997). Bullying in schools: The UK experience and the Sheffield anti-bullying project. The Irish Journal of Psychology, 18, 191-201.

      Toronto, Canada

      Pepler, D.J., Craig, W.M., Ziegler, S., & Charach, A. (1994). An evaluation of an anti-bullying intervention in Toronto schools. Canadian Journal of Community, 13, 95-110.

      Ireland Pilot Study

      O'Moore, A.M., & Minton, S.J. (2005). Evaluation of the effectiveness of an anti-bullying programme in primary schools. Aggressive Behavior, 31, 609-622.

      Oslo Implementation

      Olweus, D. (2005).  New positive results with the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in 37 Oslo schools. The HEMIL-Center, University of Bergen.

      Institute on Family & Neighborhood Life
      Clemson University
      158 Poole Agricultural Center
      Clemson, SC 29634
      (864) 710-4562
      Email: nobully@clemson.edu
      Website: www.clemson.edu/olweus

      Bergen, Norway (Olweus, D., & Alsaker, 1991)

      Evaluation Methodology

      Design:  The Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in Norway was the result of a state mandated effort to combat serious bullying in Norwegian schools and classrooms. The catalyst for the mandate was the suicide deaths of three Norwegian school children with a history of victimization. The gravity of the tragedies, the media attention and government financing and coordination of the program fostered a great deal of support by teachers, parents and the general public.

      Because the Bullying Prevention Program was a nationwide anti-bullying program, random selection of treatment schools was not possible. The evaluation was a longitudinal, quasi-experimental design with time-lagged contrasts of four adjacent grade cohorts. In this design, the grade 5 cohort at T1 was compared with the T2 data for the grade 4 cohort, which at that time had reached the same age as the baseline group. The same kind of comparisons were made between the grade 6 cohort at T1 and the grade 5 cohort at T2 and between the grade 7 cohort at T1 and the grade 6 cohort at T2. Only two of the cohorts could be used to assess T1 and T3 effects. Grade 6 and grade 7 cohorts were contrasted with data collected at T3 on the grade 4 and grade 5 cohorts, respectively.

      All participants were administered a Bully/Victim questionnaire, assessing the nature and prevalence of bullying in their school, in the spring of the school year prior to program implementation (May 1993). Follow-up questionnaires were administered in the spring of the following two school years, i.e. after eight months of treatment (May 1994) and twenty months of treatment (May 1995).

      Sample: The sample included 2,500 4th-7th grade students in 112 classrooms in 42 schools in Bergen, Norway. Each cohort consisted of between 500 and 700 students. Classes were the sampling unit used in analyses.

      Measures: Measures taken from the Bully/Victim Questionnaire included (1) items on the questionnaire regarding the frequency of bullying incidents during the semester, (2) students' attitudes toward bullying and (3) teacher responses to bullying. Students were also given a 23 item questionnaire regarding self-reported anti-social behaviors, items assessing school climate. Additional measurements included teacher ratings of classroom bullying behaviors and a four-dimensional measure of classroom climate.

      Analysis: Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to capture the effects of students within classes within schools within cohorts. To determine the intervention effects controlling for the cohort effects, comparisons were made for age/grade equivalent cohorts. In other words, separate analyses for each combination of age/grade cohorts were conducted comparing Time 1 (T1) to Time 2 (T2) and Time 1 to Time 3 (T3).

      Outcomes

      Bergen, Norway (Olweus & Alsaker, 1991):
      Students' reports of bullying and victimization were significantly reduced, in most cases by 50% or more. These reductions were generally consistent across gender and grade subgroups. Some program effects were significantly stronger at the second follow-up (twenty months post baseline) compared to the first follow-up (eight months post baseline). Teacher and peer reports also indicated a decrease in bully/victim problems. Students reported an improvement in order and discipline, positive social relationships and attitudes toward school, while also indicating reductions in anti-social behavior, such as theft, vandalism and truancy, all of which indicate an improvement in overall school climate. Students reported an increase in their satisfaction with school.

      Additional analyses indicated a cohort effect in bully/victim problems among the four grades included in the evaluation. However, when the cohort effect was controlled for, the intervention effect from baseline to follow-ups remained significant. Also, classes that received stronger implementation of integral program components showed greater reductions in bully/victim behaviors.

      South Carolina, United States

      Melton, G.B., Limber, S.P, Cunningham, P., Osgood, D.W., Chambers, J., Flerx, V., Henggeler, S., & Nation, M., (1998). Violence among rural youth. Final report to the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Washington, DC: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

      The U.S. replication in South Carolina based their program on the original program model developed and implemented by Olweus in Norway (see program description in primary study). Differences in the U.S. program included efforts to involve the community, survey translation to English, involvement of school-based mental health professionals, ongoing program supervision from program consultants, American versions of the video and information materials and additional classroom activities.

      Evaluation Methodology
      Design:  The evaluation was a quasi-experimental design with non-random assignment of treatment and comparison sites in matched pairs. The evaluation sample was comprised of 4th, 5th and 6th grade students in six non metropolitan districts in South Carolina. The districts were divided and matched into pairs based on location and student demographics. Districts were predominately African-American, poor and located in counties with high juvenile delinquency rates. Baseline data was collected in 1995 (Y1), when participants were in grades 4-6. Follow-up data was collected in March of 1996 (Y2) and 1997 (Y3). All schools in one district in each pair received the program in Y1, after baseline data collection. These schools formed group A. Schools in the other district in each pair received the program one year later, at Y2. These schools formed group B. Group B served as a control group for Y1. There were 11 group A schools in Y1 and 28 group B schools. In Y2, all group A schools continued in the evaluation, and 7 group B schools began the program. Data was collected from 6,389 students in Y1, 6,263 students in Y2 and 4,928 in Y3.

      Sample Characteristics:  Data was collected from 6,389 students in Y1, when students were in grades 4-6. In Y2, when the sample was in grades 5-7, 6,263 students were surveyed. In Y3, when students were in grades 6-8, there were 4,928 students in the sample. Schools in the sample were predominately African American (ranging from 46-95%), poor and located in counties with high juvenile arrests rates in the state (top 15% of all counties in S.C.).

      Measures:  The evaluation used the original Bully/Victim Questionnaire developed by Olweus for the Norway program (see primary study). Of the twelve scales, there were measures of bullying frequency, victimization frequency, frequency of bullying of teachers, and attitudes about bullying. Eight scales measured self-reported anti-social behavior (i.e. theft, vandalism and truancy), violence, delinquency, school misbehavior, school sanctions, group delinquency and substance use.

      Analyses:  Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) was used to estimate program effects. Gender and grade were included as Level 1 variables, as was overall program impact. This variable compares scores from baseline to scores after each group has experienced one year of the intervention. Also at Level 1, the time variable was coded to distinguish the effect of the second year of the program (time 3). A Level 2 variable was included to provide a test of group differences at each point of measurement (group). Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was used to determine group differences after one year of the program, at T2.

      Outcomes 
      Baseline Equivalence and Differential Attrition: Group A had higher rates bullying peers and bullying teachers, but Group A was equivalent to Group B on measures of victimization and attitudes toward bullying.

      Posttest: Results of HLM demonstrated no significant differences between Group A and Group B in bullying peers, victimization, anti-social behavior, attitudes toward bullying or bullying teachers. There were no overall program effects (combining the effects for both years for group A and the second year group B) or year 2 effects.

      ANCOVA, used to determine group differences after one year of the program, indicated that Group A after one year of the program, compared to Group B, had reduced rates of bullying and anti-social behaviors, i.e. theft, vandalism and truancy, but no differences on measures of victimization and bullying teachers.

      HLM analyses indicated the program demonstrated positive results on measures of bullying and anti-social behavior, i.e. theft, vandalism and truancy, for group A after one year of treatment, but these differences were not sustained, as indicated by follow-up surveys in Y3. Group B, who received delayed program implementation, demonstrated no program effect.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Positive outcomes for intervention youth on reductions in bullying and anti-social behavior after one year of participation, compared to control condition.

      Limitations:  There were baseline differences between the two groups. Differential attrition is not reported, and there were three schools that dropped from the control group by year two. The outcomes were mixed, with nothing found using HLM analysis for examining the effects of treatment over both years, or for year two alone. The ANCOVA at the end of year one found effects of treatment on frequency of bullying others and antisocial behavior. 

      Sheffield, England

      Whitney, I., Rivers, I., Smith, P.K., & Sharp, S. (1994). The Sheffield Project: Methodology and findings. In P.K. Smith and S. Sharp (eds.). School bullying: Insights and perspectives (pp. 20-56). London, England: Routledge.

      This program was closely based on the original Olweus program. Intervention strategies included development of a school bullying policy, classroom discussions, lessons and activities, increased playground supervision and improved playground environment, assertiveness training for victims, peer counseling and intervention for individuals and small groups. From the total list of intervention strategies available, treatment schools were allowed to select which ones they implemented, making each school's program somewhat unique.

      Evaluation Methodology
      Design:  The evaluation was a quasi-experimental design with adjacent age-cohorts. Baseline data was collected in November of 1990 and schools began program implementation in 1991. The first steps of program implementation, inviting schools to participate in the program, began in February of 1991. Teacher training workshops took place in spring and summer and program implementation and monitoring began in September of 1991. Follow-up data was collected in November of 1992, after a full year of treatment.

      The participants were 8 to 11 years old (enrolled in junior/middle schools, also referred to in the article as primary schools) and 11 to 16 years old (enrolled in secondary schools). A total of 6,758 students from twenty four schools participated in surveying at baseline (2,623 from 17 primary schools and 4,135 from 7 secondary schools). One primary school and three secondary schools declined program participation, but agreed to be surveyed at follow-up. These four schools serve as comparison sites, who did little or nothing to address the problem of bullying.

      Implementation and program development did not proceed along the optimal timeline. At the time of the follow-up survey only 8 primary schools and 4 secondary schools had made the expected progress through stages of development. In order to ensure comparability between baseline and follow-up, researchers omitted certain classes from each year so that the numbers of classes and pupils were equal at both survey times.

      Sample Characteristics: The baseline sample was comprised of 6,758 students (1,271 boys and 1,352 girls) from 24 schools. This included 17 primary schools, with 112 classes of 2,623 students ages 8-11 and 7 secondary schools, with 211 classes of 4,135 students ages 11-16. The schools represented all areas of the city.

      Measures: The student self-report survey was a modified version of the original Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire. At the follow-up survey, students were asked if they perceived the school had taken any action to stop bullying and if there had been any change as a result of that action.

      Analyses: Change in means between the first year (T1) and second year (T2) surveys were compared using single-sample t-tests and probabilities for percentage difference scores.

      Outcomes
      Baseline Equivalence and Differential Attrition:  After the researchers made adjustments to ensure comparability between baseline and follow-up, there were 2,212 primary school students and 4,256 secondary school students in treatment schools, and 99 primary students and 1,742 secondary students in comparison schools. The total number of students aged 8-16 years was 8,309.

      Posttest: Most individual treatment schools indicated increases in the number of students who did not bully others, a decrease in the frequency of bullying others and a decrease in the number of peers who bully others. The only significant result across all schools was a decrease in students' self-reported frequency of bullying other students (a 12% decrease). In most schools, there was an increase in the number of students who reported spending break time alone. There was also an increase in the number of students who indicated they would not join in bullying. A larger percentage of students were reporting to adults that they were being bullied and that an adult had talked to them if they had bullied others. However, there were no differences in their perception of teachers stopping bullying. For most measures, changes were better in treatment schools than in comparison schools. Among comparison schools, one primary school and one secondary school outcome measure indicated bullying problems had worsened between baseline and follow-up.

      Long-Term (Eslea, M., 1998). 
      This study is a follow-up study conducted in late 1993 after 2 years of intervention in the Sheffield evaluation. The follow-up contained 4 schools from the original sample and was conducted one year after the second survey (the last survey) of the Sheffield students. Of the original primary schools, 11 head teachers agreed to interviews, and four of the schools subsequently took part in a third survey. The surveys were done on a whole-school basis, with 657 children, aged 7-11, participating. Surveys were administered at the same time of the year as those in the earlier Sheffield evaluation. The results for these four schools were compared with their previous results.

      Two of the schools showed a decline in students who reported being bullied sometimes or more since the start of the project. One school experienced increases over time in students who reported being bullied, and one school experienced a decline initially but then experienced an increase. Overall, boys experienced a decline in being bullied over time, while girls first experienced a decline and then an increase. By the third survey, girls were significantly more likely to report being bullied than were boys. The results were similar with regard to bullying others, with two schools showing a decline, one school an increase and one school a decrease and then an increase. After two years of intervention, there was little to no change in the percentage of students who told someone at home or at school about bullying. There were also no overall differences between 1992 and 1993 of the anti-bullying effort made by the schools and the effectiveness of that work as perceived by students, although individual schools did show some relationship between effort and effectiveness.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Significant decrease in students' self-reported frequency of bullying other students.
      • Positive outcomes on measures of numbers of students and peers not bullying others, frequency of bullying, and students indicating they would not join in bullying.
      • Increases in the percentage of students reporting bullying incidents to adults and adults talking to students who bullied others.
      • Mixed long-term results in sustainment of program effects.

      Toronto, Canada

      Pepler, D.J., Craig, W.M., Ziegler, S., & Charach, A. (1994). An evaluation of an anti-bullying intervention in Toronto schools. Canadian Journal of Community, 13, 95-110. 

      This bullying intervention was based on Olweus' Norwegian Bullying Prevention Program, with considerations made for Canadian education, culture and ethnic composition. Unlike the Norwegian program, the Toronto program was not state mandated, nor was it precipitated by the tragic events and media attention that led to the creation of the Norwegian program. The Toronto program was a grassroots effort in schools, and the program was developed by administrators and teachers.

      The Toronto program had the three level components similar to the original program: the school component, the classroom component and the parent component. The school component included a school conference day to discuss the bullying problem and efforts to address it, regular staff meetings, reorganization and greater supervision of playground activities and program monitoring. At the time of evaluation, the parent level included efforts to encourage parents to talk to their children about bullying and increase awareness for signs of it. At the classroom level, teachers used Learning Circles which included readings, discussions and interactive lessons addressing bullying behaviors. The classroom efforts also included a peer conflict mediation program.

      Evaluation Methodology
      Design: The evaluation was a pre-test post-test design. Schools participating in the program and evaluation were self-selected due to their interest in and commitment to bullying prevention efforts. A total of 1,052 students from four treatment schools (three K-8 schools and one grades 7-8) participated in the evaluation at baseline. Eleven fewer students (1041) participated in the follow-up survey. Baseline surveys were administered before program implementation, and follow-up surveys were administered 18 months post baseline. Supplementally, teachers were asked to complete a qualitative survey on classroom activities. Seventy-four percent completed surveys. Eight team leaders were interviewed.

      Sample Characteristics:  The sample included 1,052 students from four treatment schools (three K-8 schools and one grades 7-8). All schools were in urban areas with diverse ethnic populations. All students in grade 3-8 in all four schools were surveyed. Eleven fewer students (1,041) completed the follow-up questionnaire due to school mobility, baseline and follow-up samples were not paired. Seventy-eight teachers (74%) completed a Classroom Activities Questionnaire and eight team leaders participated in interviews.

      Measures:  The 40-item student self-report questionnaire on bullying and victimization was closely based on the original Bully/Victim Questionnaire developed by Olweus (described in primary study). The reference period was two months.

      The Classroom Activities Questionnaire asked teachers about implementation of program components in their classrooms. The team leader interviews were based on school leaders' perception of program implementation and success indicated by observed change in attitudes and behaviors among students and staff.

      Analyses:  For the student bully/victim questionnaire, the differences in frequencies of behaviors between baseline and follow-up were calculated. A z-test was used to determine significant differences in the distribution of responses between baseline and follow-up. Teacher Classroom Activities Questionnaire and school leader interview data were qualitatively analyzed.

      Outcomes
      Posttest: According to students self-reports, there were significant increases in teacher interventions and teachers talking to bullies about their behavior. There was no difference in the frequency of victims talking to teachers, nor was there change in parents talking to their children. Students reported being less likely to engage in bullying (17% reduction). The number of children reporting that they or their peers had intervened in bullying and those who reported feeling uncomfortable observing bullying did not change. There was a small but significant increase in the percent of children who self-reported they had bullied other students (2% increase over the school term, and 5% increase in the past five days). A smaller percent reported being victimized in the past five days (18% decrease), but there was no change over the school term. Racially motivated bullying increased. More children reported spending recess alone.

      Results were mixed. Bullying behaviors increased over time, although students reported they were less likely to join in bullying behaviors. Victimization decreased on one measure, but not another. Teachers, but not parents, were more likely to talk to bullies about their behavior, but neither were more likely to speak to victims about their difficulties.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Significant increases in student-reported teacher intervention in bullying and talking to bullies about their behavior.
      • 17% reduction in student likelihood of engaging in bullying.

      Ireland Pilot Study

      O'Moore, A.M., & Minton, S.J. (2005). Evaluation of the effectiveness of an anti-bullying programme in primary schools. Aggressive Behavior, 31, 609-622.

      This program is based on the Olweus' Norwegian Bullying Prevention Program. The four key elements of the 1996 Norwegian implementation were replicated here, including the training of network professionals, the teacher's resource pack, the parents' resource pack, and work with pupils. Eleven teachers were trained in one county in Ireland. Training lasted 12 full days and each member of this professional network was responsible for program activities in three to five schools.

      Evaluation Methodology

      Design:  This program implementation was evaluated using a pre-post design. Of the 100 schools that were invited to participate, 42 (42%) accepted. Third and fourth class (or 3rd and 4th grade) students completed pre-test assessments at the beginning of the school year and posttest assessment at the beginning of their next school year. Only 22 schools were included in the analysis (52% of those involved, 22% of those invited) because of problems in the remaining schools with administration of the questionnaires to the correct class groupings. Only 22 schools had matching pretest (n = 527) and posttest (n = 520) data. A teacher questionnaire was also implemented to 126 teachers at pretest and 83 at posttest (66% retention rate).

      Sample Characteristics:  This report provides no specific information on the composition of the sample.

      Measures:  The student questionnaire was a modified version of the Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire. The teacher questionnaire assessed teacher's awareness of, and response to, bullying.

      Analysis:  Results were generated through chi-square tests with post-hoc analyses implemented to assess the effect of age on program effects.

      Outcomes
      Baseline Equivalence and Differential Equivalence: There were no differences between student reports at pre- or post-test based on age. The two grades of students were similar on their experiences being bullied and their experiences bullying others. The pre- and post-test teacher samples were also closely matched on gender, age, experience teaching, and employment positions held.

      Posttest: 
      Student Reports: There were significant reductions in self-reported victimization. The percentage of students who were bullied once a week or more (7.2%) significantly declined (to 3.6%), as did the percentage of those who reported being bullied in the past five days. There was only a marginally significant decline in self-reported incidents of bullying in the past school term, but those who reported bullying others once a week or more in the past school term significantly declined from pre- to posttest, as did self-reported bullying in the past five days. The program had no effect on the reporting of bullying or on students' perceptions of the willingness of teachers or peers to try to stop bullying. Students were, however, significantly more likely to report that they would try to stop bullying if they saw it occurring. Finally, significantly fewer students reported at posttest that if they saw a student being bullied, they would do nothing.

      Teacher Reports: Tests of significance were not performed or were not reported in this publication on the teacher-report data. The majority of teachers felt the school was a safe place for young people who find it hard to defend themselves and claimed that they were interested in stopping bullying, "always" attempted to stop bulling (96% at pretest, 97.6% at posttest) - or usually did, and believed that bullying is an issue for all staff to handle. Support for the notion that more rigorous monitoring of school bullying was needed dropped from 67.5% to 51.8% at posttest.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Significant reductions in students reporting having been bullied in the past week or past five days.
      • Significant reductions in student self-reported bullying in the past week or past five days.
      • Significant increases in student intentions to try to stop bullying if they saw it occurring, as well as significant reductions in students reporting that they would do nothing if witness to bullying.

      Limitations:  Results are incredibly limited in generalizability because of the weak methodological design, which included no comparison or control group, high levels of attrition. While there were largely positive and significant results, this study is greatly limited by the pre-posttest design, which lacks scientific methodological rigor.

      Oslo Pre-Posttest Study

      Olweus, D. (2005). New positive results with the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in 37 Oslo schools. The HEMIL-Center, University of Bergen.

      Evaluation Methodology
      This evaluation reports on program implementation in 37 Oslo schools who started the program in 2001 or 2002. There were 24 primary schools, 6 lower secondary schools, and 7 combined schools (grades 4 through 10) with a total of about 8,000 students. All schools carried out assessments at pre-test and one year later (after 8 months of the program) and about half of them completed a third assessment, two years after the first (after 20 months of the program). Outcomes included being bullied, defined as being bullying two or three times a month or more, and bullying other students, defined as bullying others two or three times a month or more.

      Outcomes
      Posttest:
      Before starting the program, the general prevalence of being bullied was 14% for primary schools and 7% for lower secondary schools. The general prevalence of bullying another student was 6-7% at both primary and lower secondary schools. Eight months after the program began, data from the primary schools and combined schools were combined due to similarity. For these schools, there were significant reductions of 30-40% in the prevalence of being bullied and of 30-45% in the prevalence of bullying others. For lower secondary schools, there were no changes for being bullied and only a 5% reduction in bullying others. Twenty months after program implementation began, reductions continued in all schools, with 30-35% reductions (from baseline) in bullying others in lower secondary schools. In primary schools, there were 60% reductions from baseline in bullying others.

      Additional analyses indicate that results for boys and girls were quite similar. The positive results also applied to students involved in bullying that took place once a week or more, students involved in relational bullying (exclusion, ostracism, social isolation), and for bullying in the form of sexual harassment.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Significant reductions (between 30-40%) in bullying victimization among primary and combined school students at posttest.
      • Significant reductions (between 30-45%) in bullying perpetration among primary and combined school students at posttest.
      • At long-term follow-up (20 months), program effects on bullying perpetration were sustained in primary schools (60% reductions from baseline).
      • At long-term follow-up (20 months), reductions (between 30-35%) in bullying perpetration among lower secondary schools. 

      Limitations:  The results of this study were greatly limited by the weak methodological design in which no control or comparison group is utilized.

      Seattle, Washington Public Middle School Study

      Bauer, N.S., Lozano, P., & Rivara, F.P. (2007). The effectiveness of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in public middle schools: A controlled trial. Journal of Adolescent Health, 81(4), 167-173.

      Evaluation Methodology
      Design:  This publication reports on a quasi-experimental evaluation of program implementation in Seattle middle schools (grades 6 through 8) in the 2003-2004 academic year. Ten schools were followed after the state of Washington mandated that middle schools implement anti-bullying policies. Schools were given the freedom to implement the program or policy of their choice. Seven schools chose to implement the OBPP, while three utilized less formal activities. Students completed assessments in the spring of 2003 (semester before program implementation) and again in the spring of 2005 (one year after program implementation completed). There were 4,959 intervention students and 1,559 comparison students.

      Sample Characteristics:  51% of intervention youth and 50% of comparison youth were female. The intervention group was 12% Black, 7% Hispanic/Latino, 24% Asian, 40% White, 2% Native American, and 9% other, while the comparison group was 28% Black, 7% Hispanic, 25% Asian, 23% White, 1% Native American, and 10% other.  Gradewise, 34% and 37% of treatment and comparison youth, respectively, were in the 6th grade, while 33% each were in 7th grade and 32% and 29% respectively were in 8th grade. In each group, 44-47% made mostly As, 47-48% made mostly Bs/Cs, and 6-8% made mostly D/Fs.

      Measures:  Questions from the Revised Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire were used to measure relational and physical bullying victimization (4 items), attitudes and feelings towards bullying (1 item), perceptions of others' readiness to intervene (2 items), perceptions of safety of school (1 item), perceptions of school supports (7 items), and school engagement (1 item).

      Analysis:  Student-level data were aggregated by school, and school-level data were used in analysis. Poisson regression was performed, controlling for several school-level variables, including school size, percent of students eligible for free/reduced lunch, percent of students meeting state standards for a reading achievement test. Analyses also controlled for baseline frequencies of victimization, age, gender, and ethnicity.

      Outcomes
      Baseline Equivalence and Differential Attrition:  Groups were equivalent at baseline on gender, grade level, achievement, and school-level characteristics. The comparison group had significantly more Black students than intervention schools, while intervention schools had significantly more White students than comparison schools. Baseline frequencies of both relational and physical victimization were lower for the intervention group than the comparison group, but it is not specifically stated whether this difference was statistically significant. There were significant differences between groups, however, on pro-victim attitudes and desire to help others at baseline.

      Because interview assessments did not contain personal information, it is not known if the students who completed baseline also completed follow-up assessments. Retention rates, in terms of number of assessments completed at baseline versus those completed at follow-up, varied depending on outcome measure (physical victimization, relational victimization, and attitudes). For youth in intervention schools, these retention rates ranged between 89.1% and 97.7%, while they ranged from 92.9% to over 100% for comparison youth.

      Posttest:  At one-year posttest (though one of the intervention schools continued program implementation through the academic year after post-test), there were no program effects on relational or physical victimization. When stratified by race, however, White students in intervention schools reported significantly less relational and physical victimization, compared to White students in comparison schools. There were no effects for youths of other races and no effects were seen when examined by gender or grade level. There were also no overall program effects on student attitudes/feelings towards intervening in bullying situations, school engagement, perceptions of school supports, or perceptions of school safety. Sixth grade intervention youth, however, were significantly more likely to feel sorry for bullied students and want to help them, compared to 6th grade youth in comparison schools. Finally, while intervention youth overall were significantly more likely to perceive other students as actively intervening in bullying incidents than comparison youth, there were no program effects on student perceptions of teachers' or other adults' readiness to intervene.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Significant program effects by race: White intervention students reported significantly less relational and physical victimization, compared to comparison students.
      • Significant program effects on secondary measures by grade: 6th grade intervention students reported being significantly more likely to feel sorry for bullied students and want to help them, compared to comparison students in 6th grade.
      • Significant program effects on perceptions of other students actively intervening in bullying incidents, compared to comparison youth reports. 

      Limitations: The evidence of effect for this program, as used in a multi-ethnic, urban area in the United States, is problematized primarily by the lack of consistent effects throughout the entire sample. There were no overall effects. There were some effects, across ethnicity and age. Additionally, there was no measurement of bullying behaviors.

      Bowllan, N. M. (2011). Implementation and evaluation of a comprehensive, school-wide bullying prevention program in an urban/suburban middle school. Journal of School Health, 81(4), 167-173.

      This study examines the impact of the Olweus Bullying Prevention program in an urban-suburban, Catholic middle school.

      Evaluation Methodology

      Design:  The study utilized a quasi-experimental design with time-lagged contrasts between age-equivalent groups. Students who received one year of the program were compared with children of the same grade level who did not receive the program. A cohort of 158 7th and 8th grade students in one small Catholic middle school in the northeastern U.S. served as the pre-OBPP baseline group, and a second cohort of 112 students  in 7th and 8th grades served as the post OBPP group. Intervention began in February, 2007. Baseline assessments were administered in February 2007 to the cohort of 158 students and 17 teachers. The Time 2 assessment occurred in March, 2008 and was administered to the cohort of 112 students and 10 teachers. The baseline cohort included 59 7th graders and 99 8th graders. The post assessment included 49 7th graders and 62 8th graders (these 8th graders included 7th graders from the pre-OBPP baseline cohort).

      Sample Characteristics: The pretest cohort included 45.6% female, 38% Black/Multiracial, 7.6% Hispanic, 51% Caucasian, and 3.4% Native American/Asian. The posttest cohort included 44.6% female, 48% Black/Multiracial, 10.5% Hispanic, 35.5% Caucasian, and 5.7% Native American/Asian.

      Measures:  The Revised Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire and the Teacher Questionnaire were used.  Reliability and validity of the Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire has been previously validated. The Teacher Questionnaire included 29 items that addressed perceptions on prevalence of bullying, locations of bullying, types of bullying, students' reports of bullying, and teachers' and administrations' response to bullying. To be classified as a bully or a victim of bullying, one had to report having bullied or been bullied "2 or 3 times a month" to "several times per week."

      Analysis:  Pearson chi-square test for independence was used to evaluate statistical significance for items on the Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire. A phi coefficient was used to measure the effect size for a chi-square test for independence. Based on the small teacher sample, a Fisher's Exact Test was used to evaluate statistical significance on the teacher interview items.

      Outcomes
      Posttest: Results were quite mixed on the Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire for females. There was a 34.4% decrease in reports of being excluded and 31.1% decrease in reports of being bullied among 7th grade girls. However, contrary to expectations, 8th grade girls were more likely to be physically bullied (20% increase), at a higher frequency (25% increase), and taken part in bullying (35.6% increase). Indirect verbal bullying did decrease among 8th grade girls (35% decrease). There were no significant findings on these variables for 7th or 8th grade males, and the article suggests some negative trends on certain prevalence measures.

      Teacher reports indicated significant and positive improvements in their ability to identify, manage, and report bullying incidents.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes

      •  Significant outcomes for females only, and by grade, where 7th grade girls reported decreases in being excluded and bullied (34.4% and 31.1%, respectively), and 8th grade girls reported a 35% decrease in indirect verbal bullying.

      Limitations
      This evaluation occurred in one school only, and used time-lagged, age-equivalent contrasts. There were relatively few positive outcomes and those were only for 7th grade girls. Most of the outcomes were in the wrong direction for 8th grade girls, and there were no significant outcomes for boys, also with some negative outcomes. This study can lend no evidence in support of the OBPP.

      Pennsylvania Study

      Schroeder, B. A., Messina, A., Schroeder, D., Good, K., Barto, S., Saylor, J., Masiello, M. (2011). The implementation of a statewide bullying prevention program: Preliminary findings from the field and the importance of coalitions. Health Promotion Practice, March 21, epub.

      This was a large-scale implementation of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in Pennsylvania conducted by a research institute that provided the schools with intensive technical assistance in the first year of implementation.

      Evaluation Methodology
      Design:  Through the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PA CARES) and Windber Research Institute (HALT!), the OBPP was provided to 100,000 children in more than 70 school buildings in grades K-12. District-wide implementation became a part of HALT!, and received intensive support and onsite consultations, up to 8 hours per week per public school district as needed (3-7 buildings per district). Districts that chose to implement at the building-level became a part of PA CARES, receiving up to 12 hours of certified trainer support during the first year of implementation.

      An age-cohorts design was used to analyze program effects. Data from two equivalent age cohorts of students were compared at two or more points in time. There were a total of 107 schools and 54,128 student responses across both 2007 and 2008. PA CARES conducted their baseline assessment in 2008. (It is assumed that a Time 2 assessment occurred in 2009, but the time period is not clear from the report.) HALT! conducted assessments in 2007 (pre) and 2008 (Time 2) and 2009 (Time 3). The HALT! 2007 schools only included elementary and high schools (no middle schools), although middle schools were included in HALT! 2008 surveys. 

      Measures:  The Olweus Bullying Questionnaire was administered to students in grades 3 to 12 prior to the start of the program and at the end of Year 1 and Year 2. The Teacher Questionnaire was also administered to teachers in HALT! schools.

      Analysis:  A measure of relative change was used to calculate the difference in percentages between baseline assessment (2007) and the assessment after one and two years of the program (2008 and 2009).

      Outcomes
      Posttest: Overall, after one to two years of program implementation, and across age groups and cohorts, intervention students reported a decrease in bullying others. However, self-reports of being bullied showed mixed findings with some age groups and cohorts showing decreases and others showing no positive program effects. Positive changes were observed across most age groups and cohorts in students' perceptions that adults in the school were actively working to address bullying. Across most groups, increases were observed in the percentage of students who indicated they would try to help a bullied student, and decreases in the percentage of students who would passively stand by or join in the bullying.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Decreases in reports of students bullying others.
      • Increases in the perceptions of students who felt that adults in the school were actively trying to address bullying.
      • Increases in the percentage of students who indicated they would try to help a bullied student.
      • Decreases in the percentage of students who felt they would be a passive bystander during a bullying incident.

      Limitations:  The sample was large, however, it appears that student assessments only came from approximately half of the eligible student body. There is an absence of Time 1 middle schools from HALT!, but middle schools are included at Time 2.  PA CARE schools were not assessed at the same baseline period as the HALT! schools (in 2007), but rather PA CARE schools first assessment was in 2008. There is no description of the baseline equivalence of the cohorts being compared over time.

      Pennsylvania Study Update

      Limber, S. P., Olweus, D., Massiello, M., Molnar-Main, S., & Moore, D. (2012). Evaluation of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in a large scale study in Pennsylvania. Unpublished.

      This study overlaps with Study 9 (Schroeder et al., 2012) in examining the outcomes of widespread use of the program in Pennsylvania schools. Unlike the earlier study, however, this one used all schools and the sample size is substantially larger.

      Evaluation Methodology

      Design: This quasi-experimental study examined 194 elementary, middle, and high schools in Pennsylvania, all of which implemented the program. One cohort of schools completed the baseline assessment and began the program in 2008; another cohort completed the baseline assessment and began the program in 2009. With the program lasting at least one and one-half school years, the posttest assessments followed two years after baseline assessments. The authors refer to Time 1 and Time 3 assessments.

      Based on the selection cohort design, the study did not follow students over time but compared the postintervention outcomes for each grade to the preintervention outcomes for the same grade two years earlier. For example, postintervention 6th graders at Time 3 (who were preintervention 4th graders at Time 1) were compared to preintervention 6th graders at Time 1. The design thus compared different cohorts but the same grades.

      A total of 70,531 students completed baseline assessments (Time 1), and 63,843 students completed posttest assessments (Time 3). There is no other information on participation rates or the population of students in the schools from which the analysis sample was obtained.

      Measures: Subjects completed the anonymous 40-question Olweus Bullying Questionnaire on “students’ self-reports of bullying others, being bullied, their own actions when they witness bullying, their attitudes about bullying, and their perceptions of others’ actions (e.g., other students and teachers) to address bullying.” With most measures dichotomized to indicate bullying 2-3 times a month or more, the questionnaire produced 14 outcomes for analysis. Previous studies showed that the items have high reliability, construct validity, and criterion validity.

      Sample Characteristics: At Time 1, the sample included 48.9% girls and 50.5% boys. Students were distributed across grades as follows: grade 3 (11.0%), grade 4 (11.4%), grade 5 (12.2%), grade 6 (15.7%), grade 7 (16.0%), grade 8 (15.9%), grade 9 (5.2%), grade 10 (4.4%), grade 11 (4.1%), and grade 12 (2.3%). The race/ethnicity of the sample was 58.6% white, 4.6% Black/African American, 3.8% Hispanic or Latino, 7.3% other race/ethnicity, 8.6% multi-racial, and 17.2% missing.

      Analysis: The analysis combined the schools entering the program in 2008 with the schools entering in 2009. It tested for changes due to the intervention by examining differences over two years between two different cohorts that were in the same grade at preintervention (Time 1) and postintervention (Time 3).

      First, the descriptive analysis reported mean probabilities at Time 1 and Time 3 (for dichotomous outcomes. From the probabilities, it calculated the absolute change (Time 1 – Time 3), the relative change (Time 1 – Time 3 / Time 1), and odds ratios (Time 1 odds / Time 3 odds). For continuous outcomes, the analysis used mean values at Time 1 and Time 3.

      Second, the inferential analysis used multilevel logistic regression and linear regression to test for the significance of time and the time interactions. The multilevel models adjust for clustering by school.

      To supplement the analysis of program effects, an additional analysis checked for history effects in the absence of the program. It compared preintervention outcomes in 2008 to preintervention outcomes of students in the same grade in 2009. If these 2008 and 2009 outcomes differ little, it suggests that changes over time in the absence of the program have limited importance.

      Outcomes

      Baseline Equivalence and Differential Attrition: With the cohort-based design, the study cannot perform typical tests of baseline equivalence. And with the anonymous questionnaire, the study cannot follow attrition of individual subjects from pretest to posttest. The numbers show 9.5% fewer respondents at Time 3, but comparisons of the gender, race, and ethnic makeup of the Time 1 and Time 3 samples were not provided.

      Posttest: All 14 outcomes showed statistically significant improvement from Time 1 to Time 3. With more than 60,000 subjects at each time point, statistical significance provides only a minimal standard. Effects sizes for the improvement over time are all small (though applicable to a large population). The largest odds ratio equals 1.54. Using the formula from Lipsey and Wilson (d = ln(OR)/1.81), this odds ratio is equivalent to .23. The smallest odds ratio is 1.18 (d = .09) and the mean odds ratio is 1.32 (d = .15). The two effect sizes for continuous measures are .09 and .11.

      Tests for the interaction of time and student sociodemographic characteristics found many significant results. Despite some differences in program effects, however, nearly all the cohort, gender, race/ethnicity, or grade groups showed significant improvement over time.

      As a check on the cohort design, the authors say the following:

      To assess possible history effects (i.e., whether observed reductions might be attributed to historical effects and not to the program itself), baseline measurements were compared on key variables at 2008 and 2009. Using Satterhwaite approximation (to correct for unequal sample sizes within schools), the Bonerroni adjustment for multiple comparisons, and a robust estimation (which is recommended when distributional assumptions are not fully met), only one (being socially excluded, adjusted significance = .003) was statistically significant, suggesting that there were no significant improvements in scores on key bullying variables in the absence of the intervention.

      Brief Bullets

      • The intervention produced small but significant improvements for 14 bullying outcomes, while over-time comparisons across cohorts before the intervention showed only one significant difference.
      • The intervention affected most cohort, gender, race/ethnic, and grade groups, although they were often stronger for some subgroups than others.

      Limitations

      • Description of the sample offered no information on the size of the student population from which the analysis sample was obtained.
      • No figures on gender, race, and ethnic differences between the Time 1 and Time 3 samples were provided.

      Amundsen, E. J., & Ravndal, E. (2010). Does successful school-based prevention of bullying influence substance use among 13- to 16-year-olds? Drugs: education, prevention and policy, 17(1), 42-54.

      Oslo, Norway 2001-2002 Longitudinal Replication to determine if a program designed to reduce bullying behaviors can have an effect on substance use behaviors (see Study 6 for parallel project).
       
      Evaluation Methodology
       
      Design: The study was conducted in grades 7 to 9 in six Oslo schools in 2001, and the classes were followed up to grade 10. There were four treatment and two control schools. Three cohorts were followed: those starting grade 7 in 1999 were followed from grade 9 through 10; those starting grade 7 in 2000 were followed from grade 8 through 10; and those starting grade 7 in 2001 were followed from then through grade 10. The design thus included two, three or four interviews with the individual subjects, depending on their grade level at baseline. Data collections occurred at the turn of each year. The schools were not chosen randomly, but were stratified on the basis of geographical variation in alcohol drinking among young people in the city. There was no discussion of student turnover. Response rates ranged from 86-90% over the four years.
       
      Sample Characteristics: No information was provided on the sample or differences between the treatment and control schools.
       
      Measures: There were questions on the use and frequency of tobacco, and alcohol over the preceding 12 months (yes/no, number of times), whether the student had been intoxicated in the past 12 months, and use of illegal substances in the past 12 months (cannabis, amphetamine, ecstasy, GHB, LSD, cocaine, heroin).
       
      Analysis: Logistic regression for binary measures and linear regression on aggregated outcomes (proportions in grades) were reported. Multi-level random models were applied for each outcome. In the multi-level models, the measurements for individuals over grades were designated at the lowest level, cohorts at the second level, and schools at the third level.
       
      Outcomes
       
      Posttest: In logistic models, 3 of 9 measures were significant. Control schools had a higher increase in cannabis use and drunkenness (6 times or more and 11 times or more) than OBPP schools. Smoking was marginally significant, with higher increase in control schools. There were no significant differences using aggregated models (fixed and random).
       
      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:
      • Significant differences in levels of cannabis use, smoking, and drunkenness between groups, with levels much higher among control group.

      Limitations

        There were a few significant outcomes on substance use measures favoring the intervention schools, but most effects were non-significant. However, there is not etiological reason for a program designed to prevent bullying behaviors to also prevent or reduce substance use. With regard to study design, there was no information provided on the sample characteristics, baseline equivalency, or attrition.

      Kuala Lumpur

      Yaakub, N. F., Haron, F., & Leong, G. C. (2010). Examining the efficacy of the Olweus prevention programme in reducing bullying: the Malaysian experience. Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 5, available online at www.sciencedirect.com, 595-598.

      This replication study was conducted in Kuala Lumpur to examine program effects of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program on students in Malaysia.

      Evaluation Methodology
      The study was quasi-experimental with data from six secondary schools (three experimental and three control) in the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur. In both conditions there was an all boys' school, and all girls' school, and a co-educational school. A bullying questionnaire with 24 items was used to assess physical, verbal, and relational bullying. The Cronbach test for reliability showed acceptable levels.

      The report is extremely brief, with no information provided on sample selection or characteristics, baseline equivalency, attrition, or type of analyses. It appears that the analysis involved examining the trend from pretest to posttest within both conditions.

      Outcomes
      Posttest: Contrary to expectation, there was an upward trend in the three types of bullying (physical, verbal and relational) in the experimental schools as a whole. However, in the all girls' school, there were significant downward trends for the three types of bullying after one year. The trend was upward at the boys' and co-educational schools.

      Being a victim of bullying was on a downward trend at the all girls' school on all types of bullying victimization (physical, verbal, relational, signal, and extortion). Victimization was higher at the boys' school, and there were mixed findings at the co-educational school.

      Brief Bulleted Outcomes:

      • Significant decreases in physical, verbal, and relational bullying among treatment participants at an all-girls school.

      Limitations:   The study has a weak design with no information on how the schools were selected, baseline equivalency, attrition, analysis, etc.  The program only worked in the all girls' school.  It is unclear which elements of the program were delivered. The brief article mentions classroom intervention programs, but it is not clear what they were comprised of. The classroom intervention showed more positive effects, but they have not been reported in this writeup because of the ambiguity of the intervention.

      Video

      http://www.violencepreventionworks.org/public/olweus_videos.page