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Date of Award

4-14-2006

Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology (MACP)

Committee Chair

Catherine Miller, Ph.D.

Abstract

Research on the topic of relational aggression in the middle school population is reviewed and assessed. Specific areas reviewed are the relationships between relational aggression and gender, adjustment disorders, and social status. Additionally, research on the social information processing model and its relevance to relationally aggressive behaviors is outlined. Relational aggression is shown to impact children in a variety of ways. It is a difficult type of aggression to study because the behaviors are covert and hard to measure. More research needs to be conducted on this topic in order to form solid conclusions about the impact of this behavior, specifically in the areas of assessment, the role of gender, sociopsychological impact, whether or not specific cognitive processing steps lead to acts of relational aggression, and effective interventions.

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