NIJ Virtual Conference on School Safety

Bridging Research to Practice to Safeguard Our Schools


Reducing Youth Violence by Leveraging the Influence of Network Brokers: Preliminary Results of Comprehensive School-Wide Intervention, Richard Gilman

The involvement of peers holds much promise for school-based anti-violence efforts to reduce the "bystander effect" (individuals who notice but avoid disclosing information to help a real or potential victim). This presentation will show how network "brokers" (i.e., those having direct relationships with peers who themselves do not have a direct relationship with each other) can be used to reduce the bystander effect. Data obtained over the first three years of a four-year study reveal significant reductions in school-reported violence episodes, self-reported aggression, and collective interpersonal distress, and significant increases in peer-to-broker disclosure.

Evaluating the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in U.S. Urban Middle Schools, Terri Sullivan

We evaluated the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program (OBPP) using a multiple-baseline experimental design. For teacher ratings, we found significant main effects across all subtypes of aggression and victimization, with some variability in the timing of effects. The pattern of findings showed delayed intervention effects for boys and a weaker impact of the OBPP on 6th graders. We found main effects for student-reported cyber aggression and victimization, relational aggression, and a composite of physical, verbal, and relational victimization. Decreases in victimization emerged in the 1st or 2nd year of intervention, and reductions in aggression emerged during the 3rd year. Qualitative data that help to better understand these patterns of findings will also be presented.

Randomized Impact Evaluation of the No Bully System, Thomas Hanson

The No Bully System (NBS) is a set of interventions that are designed to activate adult and peer support for targets of bullying in a school. The goal of the study was to determine whether NBS reduced the recurrence of bullying perpetration and victimization among students, whether NBS specifically reduced bullying perpetration and victimization among those students at risk of bullying involvement (victims and perpetrators), and whether NBS improved perceptions of school safety, peer support, and other indicators of school climate among all students in participating schools. The impact evaluation used a cluster randomized experimental design that involved 24 elementary schools in the Oakland Unified School District (California). Results indicated that bullying victimization declined and safety perceptions increased among bully victims. Students in intervention schools who were at very high risk of being bully victims at baseline exhibited substantial reductions in victimization compared to their counterparts in control schools. No impacts were detected on school-wide measures of school safety, peer support, and other indicators of school climate for all students in participating schools.

A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Interventions to Decrease Cyberbullying Perpetration and Victimization, Josh Polanin

Numerous school-based programs have been implemented to decrease cyberbullying perpetration and victimization. Although several previous meta-analyses have been conducted on the topic, the current review is comprehensive of the published and unpublished literatures and uses modern meta-analytic techniques. A total of 50 studies and 320 extracted effect sizes spanning 45,371 participants met the review protocol criteria. Results indicated that programs reduced cyberbullying perpetration (g = -0.18) and victimization (g = -0.13). Translated to the newly developed probability of positive impact, we estimate that future implementations have a 76% and 73% probability of decreasing cyberbullying perpetration and victimization, respectively.

Richard Gilman

Rich Gilman is a licensed clinician psychologist who is the research PI for NIJ grant NIJ-2016-9304 (Identifying and Embedding Brokers into a Multi-tiered System of Services to Reduce the Bystander Effect Leading to the Reduction of School Violence). He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and is formally recognized for his work in social network analysis and risk/resiliency factors in youth. Dr. Gilman earned his Ph.D. at the University of South Carolina and his MBA at University of Oxford. He is the author of over 100 peer-reviewed publications on resilience/risk.

Terri Sullivan

Terri Sullivan is a Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University. Her research focuses on the development, implementation, and evaluation of prevention programs aimed at increasing youths' safety and well-being in school and community settings.

Tom Hanson

Thomas Hanson is a Senior Managing Director at Wested. He conducts rigorous research on the effectiveness of programs, products, and practices intended to improve student outcomes. He has been Principal Investigator on two large-scale randomized controlled trials funded by the National Institute of Justice: The Capturing Kids’ Hearts and No Bully System impact evaluations. The Capturing Kids’ Hearts trial investigates the impacts of a school climate program designed to enhance the relationships between and among school staff and students. The No Bully System study examines the impacts of a bullying intervention program on the resolution of bullying incidents, bullying perpetration, and victimization. Hanson also serves as lead methodologist for several studies examining the impacts of education interventions.He has extensive experience in developing and validating survey instruments designed to measure school climate and other outcomes. For example, he directs and conducts evidence-based research for the California School Climate, Health, and Learning Surveys (CalSCHLS), a comprehensive whole child, school climate, and youth risk behavior data collection service available to local education agencies.

Joshua Polanin

Joshua R. Polanin, Ph.D. is a principal researcher at American Institutes for Research (AIR). He has extensive experience in quantitative methodology and has published over 50 peer-reviewed journal articles across education, criminology, public health, and methodology, including more than 20 peer-reviewed, published meta-analyses. In addition to leading several ongoing meta-analyses, he is the Co-PI of two methodological training workshops on meta-analysis. In 2020, he won the Early Career Award from the Society for Research on Educational Evaluation. Dr. Polanin holds a Ph.D. from Loyola University Chicago and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Vanderbilt University's Peabody Research Institute.

Basia Lopez


02/16/2021 at 3:30 PM (EST)   |  90 minutes
02/16/2021 at 3:30 PM (EST)   |  90 minutes