Study: Students Engaged in Ongoing ‘Social Combat’

NEW YORK — A new study found that the stereotype of the school bully preying on the weak is not a reality in schools. Instead, many students are involved in “social combat” — a constant verbal, physical and cyber fight to reach the top of school social hierarchy.

Robert Faris, a sociologist, and his co-author Diane Felmlee found that bullies and victims are not defined roles, CNN reports. Instead, the higher students rise on the social ladder, the more they bully other students and the more other students bully them.

The study surveyed 700 students at the Wheatley School in Long Island, N.Y. The students were given a survey with 28 questions on aggressive behavior four separate times throughout the semester.

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