New study suggests gender gap around homophobic bullying

Apr 26, 2012

A new study from Educational and Psychological Measurement (published by SAGE) found that when it comes to homophobic bullying, there could be a gender gap. While male victims are more likely to be bullied by male homophobic bullies, female victims are bullied by both males and females equally. Additionally, those surveyed for the research reported hearing a low number of verbal homophobic remarks towards gay men compared to other forms of non-verbal homophobic bullying.

"One explanation may be that verbal forms of homophobic toward (supposed) … have been the most frequent and, therefore, may be perceived as 'normal,'" wrote Author Gabriele Prati.

Using a survey of 863 public high school students, Prati obtained data from bullies of students who were perceived to be lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT), witnesses of homophobic bullying incidents, and the actual victims themselves. Ten percent of the students surveyed were classified as homophobic bullies because they reported engaging in bullying behavior based on sexual prejudice at least once a week. 3.5% of students were considered victims of homophobic bullying because they were harassed by homophobic aggressors at least once a week.

The study also created a new tool called the Homophobic Bullying Scale. The scale records and measures all forms of bullying motivated by homophobia beyond just the traditional name-calling. The Homophobic Bullying Scale includes physical bullying, property bullying, sexual harassment, cyber-bullying, and relational bullying such as spreading rumors and giving the silent treatment. The researcher found that previous tools that measured incidents of bullying in general could not capture the nuances of homophobia specifically.

"The use of measures not specifically designed for homophobic bullying may underestimate it," wrote Prati. "The items of the Homophobic Bullying Scale were created to measure high school students' bullying behaviors motivated by homophobia, including verbal bullying."

Explore further: Study finds law dramatically curbing need for speed

More information: The article "Development and Psychometric Properties of the Homophobic Bullying Scale" by Gabriele Prati in Educational and Psychological Measurement (EPM) is available free for a limited time at: intl-epm.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/03/22/0013164412440169.full.pdf+html

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Physiological impacts of homophobia

Feb 02, 2011

Young adults who are lesbian, gay or bisexual (LGB) are at far higher risk for severe mental health problems than their heterosexual peers. New research from Concordia University suggests that the stress of being rejected ...

Sexual harassment at school -- more harmful than bullying

Apr 23, 2008

Schools’ current focus on bullying prevention may be masking the serious and underestimated health consequences of sexual harassment, according to James Gruber from the University of Michigan-Dearborn and Susan Fineran ...

Study looks at why the bullies carry on bullying

Sep 05, 2007

Young male bullies are aware of the damage that they cause their victims but carry on to guarantee their own personal gain, according to findings of preliminary research at the University of Sussex.

Recommended for you

Study finds law dramatically curbing need for speed

Apr 18, 2014

Almost seven years have passed since Ontario's street-racing legislation hit the books and, according to one Western researcher, it has succeeded in putting the brakes on the number of convictions and, more importantly, injuries ...

Newlyweds, be careful what you wish for

Apr 17, 2014

A statistical analysis of the gift "fulfillments" at several hundred online wedding gift registries suggests that wedding guests are caught between a rock and a hard place when it comes to buying an appropriate gift for the ...

Can new understanding avert tragedy?

Apr 17, 2014

As a boy growing up in Syracuse, NY, Sol Hsiang ran an experiment for a school project testing whether plants grow better sprinkled with water vs orange juice. Today, 20 years later, he applies complex statistical ...

Creative activities outside work can improve job performance

Apr 16, 2014

Employees who pursue creative activities outside of work may find that these activities boost their performance on the job, according to a new study by San Francisco State University organizational psychologist Kevin Eschleman ...

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

baudrunner
not rated yet Apr 26, 2012
A lot of mothers (!) are trying to turn their unwanted (!) sons into gays by feeding them their estrogen and progesterone laden birth control pills, because they know when it is right to use them for their intended purpose, and when it is okay to mess with them for their own agenda. They like to go to their gynecologists for a, "more detailed examination", plus birth control pill prescriptions so that they can continue to mess with the heads of the guys they married, which they did just to meet the status quo of their peer group. That's the sad reality of life, that legislation actually exists to accommodate their mothers' perverse natures.
bredmond
not rated yet Apr 26, 2012
I've been in China for 4.5 years, so i dont know much about this phenomenon, but i remember when i was a kid, we would tease people all the time, using their alleged gayness as a target. When i was a kid, i didn't really think much about the gays, and just accepted them because i had other priorities. Especially being from California, particularly near San Francisco, i just decided i didnt want to think about that issue. but recently i feel like, is it really right? Is it really ok to be gay? and furthermore, why must i accept that gay is right? I feel that families are so important and that men's minds and bodies are formed for the purpose of fatherhood, and detracting from that is like two gears with an imperfect fit. it just grinds them down. Why dont people feel like gays are like smokers who have political momentum? And why am i bad for thinking so? The burden of proof is on the gays. And just dont say that i am intolerant. I can have my feelings. i wasnt abusive.

More news stories

Egypt archaeologists find ancient writer's tomb

Egypt's minister of antiquities says a team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered two tombs in the southern part of the country, one of them belonging to a writer and containing a trove of artifacts including reed pens ...

NASA's space station Robonaut finally getting legs

Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs. For three years, Robonaut has had to manage from the waist up. This new pair of legs means the experimental robot—now stuck ...

Ex-Apple chief plans mobile phone for India

Former Apple chief executive John Sculley, whose marketing skills helped bring the personal computer to desktops worldwide, says he plans to launch a mobile phone in India to exploit its still largely untapped ...

Filipino tests negative for Middle East virus

A Filipino nurse who tested positive for the Middle East virus has been found free of infection in a subsequent examination after he returned home, Philippine health officials said Saturday.

Airbnb rental site raises $450 mn

Online lodging listings website Airbnb inked a $450 million funding deal with investors led by TPG, a source close to the matter said Friday.