Objective: To determine the prevalence of peer victimization in school children, its relationship with depressive symptoms and academic functioning along with demographic differences (gender and grade) among study variables.
Study Design: Cross-sectional study design.
Place and Duration of Study: This study was carried out at various private/public schools in Rawalpindi from Sep to Oct 2014.
Material and Methods: Data was collected by convenient sampling technique. Victimization scale (Orpinas, 1993) and center for epidemiological studies depression scale for children (CES-DC) (Weissman et al. 1980) were used for data collection. Sample consisted of 330 school children (boys = 228 and girls = 102) of grade 6th to 10th from various private/public schools. The age range of participants was between 10 to 15 years. Psychometric properties of scales indicted moderate to good reliability.
Results: Results showed that prevalence of peer victimization was 33% and there was significant positive correlation between peer victimization and depression, whereas correlation between peer victimization and academic functioning was non-significant. Further results indicated that male children were more vulnerable to get victimized and develop depressive symptoms than female children whereas academic functioning doesn’t differ significantly across gender. Children in junior grades have more depressive symptoms than children in senior grades whereas peer victimization and academic functioning do not differ significantly across grades.
Conclusion: On the basis of study results, it was concluded that peer victimization increased the level of depressive symptoms, so interventions were required to reduce these harmful effects.
Keywords : Academic functioning, Depression, Peer victimization.