Cyberbullying in context: Direct and indirect effects by low self-control across 25 European countries
Random samples of at least 1,000 youth, ages 9 to 16 years, from 25 European countries (N = 25,142) were used to test the salience of low self-control on cyberbullying perpetration and victimization (direct and indirect effects), framed by a cross-cultural developmental approach. Path models, which provided evidence of invariance by sex, tested the hypothesized links among low self-control as well as known correlates, including offline perpetration and victimization, and externalizing behaviours. Results showed positive associations between online and offline bullying behaviours (perpetration and victimization), and, more interestingly, both direct but mostly indirect effects by low self-control on cyberbullying perpetration and victimization; externalizing behaviours had little additional explanatory power. Importantly, multi-group tests by country samples provided evidence of quite modest differences in the tested links across the 25 developmental contexts, despite some observed differences in the amount of variance explained in the dependent measures.