Faculty Sponsor

Matthew Ringenberg


Arts and Sciences


Social Work

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Symposium Date

Spring 5-1-2020


Bullying In America has been a prominent topic for the last decade. The effects are damaging and ongoing. School-aged children are affected from early elementary age through the college years with ensuing after-effects. Bullying can impede learning, social growth, and safety to the youth being bullied as well as the ones doing the bullying. (stopbullying.gov 2018) This presentation focuses on the confidence levels, knowledge, and actions of middle school-aged students in their preparedness to combat bullying in the classroom. This research explores the relationship between student knowledge of bullying and procedures to address bullying and the self-reported likelihood of reporting an incident. The participants of the study consisted of middle school students in the Valparaiso, IN area. Each student was asked to complete an online survey which was comprised of bullying questions pertaining to knowledge and perceived action. This study will help to connect education on the subject in correlation to behavioral changes supporting the deterrence of bullying in schools.

Biographical Information about Author(s)

Kimberly Betustak, Jessica Luth, and Micah Florey are senior Social Work majors. Kimberly interned at Thomas Jefferson Middle School located in Valparaiso, IN where she focused on checking-in with students and incorporating Social-Emotional Learning into the classrooms. Jessica and Micah interned at Krueger Middle School located in Michigan City, IN where they focused on projects to help better the students' lives. The researchers became interested in the topic of bullying and confidence levels while being immersed in both school settings. Kimberly's future goals include receiving her Master's Degree and working as a school Social Worker with Elementary or Middle School populations. Jessica's future goals include graduating with her Bachelors Degree and working as a school Social Worker with Middle or High School populations. Micah's future goals consist of graduating with her Master's Degree and working with Middle School populations.