The Co-evolution of Bullying Perpetration, Homophobic Teasing, and a School Friendship Network

Bullying and homophobic teasing behaviors
affect the lives of many school aged children, often co-
occur, and tend to peak in middle school. While bullying
and homophobic teasing behaviors are known to be peer

group phenomena, studies typically examine the associa-
tions at the individual or school levels. An examination of
these behaviors at the peer group level can aid in our
understanding of the formation and maintenance of peer
groups that engage in these forms of aggressive behavior

(selection), and the extent to which friends and the peer
group impact individual rates of these aggressive behaviors
(influence). In this longitudinal study, we assess the co-
evolution of friendship networks, bullying perpetration, and
homophobic teasing among middle school students (n =
190) using a Stochastic Actor-Based Model (SABM) for

longitudinal networks