Temperamental Differences in Children's Reactions to Peer Victimization

Niwako Sugimura, Karen D. Rudolph

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This research examined the hypothesis that temperament and sex moderate the contribution of peer victimization to children's subsequent adjustment (aggression and depressive symptoms). Children (125 boys, 158 girls; M age = 7.95 years, SD = 0.32; 77.7% White, 22.3% minority) and teachers reported on overt and relational victimization. Parents rated children's temperament (inhibitory control and negative emotionality) and depressive symptoms, and teachers reported on children's overt and relational aggression. Across a 1-year period, (a) overt victimization predicted overt aggression in girls with poor inhibitory control, (b) overt and relational victimization predicted depressive symptoms in girls with high negative emotionality, and (c) relational victimization predicted depressive symptoms in boys with low negative emotionality. This research helps to explain individual variation in children's reactions to peer victimization and has implications for Person × Environment models of development. Moreover, this research informs the development of targeted intervention programs for victimized youth that bolster specific resources depending on their temperament.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)314-328
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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