Document Type


Date of Degree

Summer 2014

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In


First Advisor

Kochanska, Grazyna

First Committee Member

O'Hara, Michael

Second Committee Member

Habashi, Meara

Third Committee Member

Dindo, Lilian

Fourth Committee Member

Nikolas, Molly


Bullying is a pervasive problem among children and adolescents worldwide, but relevant research, although growing, lacks coherence. The proposed study is the first to integrate three large bodies of research - on children's attachment, anger, and Social Information Processing (SIP) - in a comprehensive, developmentally informed, multi-method, multi-trait design to elucidate the origins of bullying behavior, victimization, and anti-bullying attitudes and emotions. It was predicted that (1) children's early attachment insecurity would be linked to their maladaptive SIP patterns and to higher anger proneness; (2) higher anger proneness would be associated with maladaptive SIP; (3) anger proneness and maladaptive SIP would both predict greater parent-reported aggression; (4) parent-reported aggression would predict both bullying behavior and victimization; (5) lower anger proneness and more adaptive SIP would be associated with anti-bullying attitudes and sympathy for victims of bullying. A series of path analyses revealed overall well-fitting models; however, the analyses of the specific pathways described in the hypotheses above were less conclusive. Theoretical and empirical evidence suggests that attachment security, anger proneness, and social information processing each plays a role in the development of positive or negative peer relations, but how these factors come together needs to be further elucidated.


Attachment, Bullying, Social Information Processing


viii, 92 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 76-92).


Copyright 2014 Jamie Koenig Nordling

Included in

Psychology Commons