David Álvarez GarcíaUniversity of Oviedo, Spain
Good practices for the prevention of bullying
Bullying is a public health problem that affects the psychosocial well-being of the children and adolescents involved, especially the victims. Recent studies indicate that around 10% of the students of secondary schools in Spain suffer from bullying. Victims of bullying can develop anxiety, depressive symptoms and, in the most severe cases, self-injury, suicidal ideation, or even consummated suicide. Given the seriousness of the problem, it is necessary to have effective strategies for its prevention, early detection, and treatment. In this session, we will present some keys in this sense, from an applied perspective. Special attention will be paid to the program Learn to Resolve Conflicts (In Spanish: Aprende a Resolver Conflictos; ARCO), aimed at adolescents from 12 to 18 years old and developed by the research group on School Learning, Difficulties and Academic Performance (In Spanish: Aprendizaje Escolar, Dificultades y Rendimiento Académico, ADIR) of the University of Oviedo. ARCO’s objective is to teach adolescents to approach their daily conflicts constructively, through dialogue and respect, in order to prevent violent behavior in general and bullying in particular. This involves teaching the process, attitudes, principles, and skills (emotional, perspective-taking, communicative, creative thinking and critical thinking) that facilitate constructive conflict resolution. The ARCO program has proven to be effective in reducing school violence in secondary schools.
David Álvarez is professor in the area of Developmental Psychology and Education at the University of Oviedo (Spain), and a member of the research group Aprendizaje Escolar, Dificultades y Rendimiento Académico (ADIR). His main line of research focuses on school coexistence, bullying, and cyberbullying. He has participated in research projects such as “Analysis of school coexistence in schools in the Principality of Asturias”, “Risk factors associated with cyber-victimization in adolescence” or “Training future teachers against school violence”. He is co-author of prevalence studies and analysis of predictors, published in scientific journals of impact, and co-author of evaluation instruments, such as the School Violence Questionnaire – 3 (CUVE3) (Ed. Albor-Cohs), and the intervention program Aprende a Resolver Conflictos (ARCO) (Ed. CEPE).