Social Networks and Aggressive Behavior: Peer Support or Peer Rejection?

Robert B. Cairns, Beverley D. Cairns, Holly J. Neckerman, Scott D. Gest, Jean Louis Gariépy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

613 Scopus citations

Abstract

Studied social networks and aggressive behavior in school in 2 cohorts of boys and girls in the 4th and 7th grades (N = 695). Measures of social networks yielded convergent findings. Highly aggressive subjects (both boys and girls) did not differ from matched control subjects in terms of social cluster membership or in being isolated or rejected within the social network. Peer cluster analysis and reciprocal "best friend" selections indicated that aggressive subjects tended to affiliate with aggressive peers. Even though highly aggressive children and adolescents were less popular than control subjects in the social network at large, they were equally often identified as being nuclear members of social clusters. Aggressive subjects did not differ from matched control subjects in the number of times they were named by peers as "best friend", nor did the two groups differ in the probability of having friendship choices reciprocated by peers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)815-823
Number of pages9
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Volume24
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1988

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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    Cairns, R. B., Cairns, B. D., Neckerman, H. J., Gest, S. D., & Gariépy, J. L. (1988). Social Networks and Aggressive Behavior: Peer Support or Peer Rejection? Developmental psychology, 24(6), 815-823. https://doi.org/10.1037/0012-1649.24.6.815