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April 28, 2014

New Online Continuing Education Course on School Bullying from HealthForumOnline

HealthForumOnline's (HFO) new online continuing education (CE) course, Children that Bully and Bully Victims: Psychological Theory, Traits, Assessments and Interventions, provides mental health professionals with information and skills necessary to identify, assess, prevent and intervene in the context of school-based bullying. HFO offers over 90 online CE courses for mental health professionals that are fast, convenient and especially cost-effective - with free ongoing access to course updates beyond completion of the CE activity.

Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) April 28, 2014 – HealthForumOnline (HFO), a nationally-approved (APA, ASWB, NBCC, CA-BBS) provider of online continuing education (CE) is pleased to announce a new course entitled, Children that Bully and Bully Victims: Psychological Theory, Traits, Assessments and Interventions, to its extensive online CE resource library for psychologists, social workers, counselors, and other allied healthcare professionals.

Bullying is aggressive behavior in which someone intentionally and repeatedly causes another person injury or discomfort. A pervasive problem in U.S. schools, 40-80% of school-age children experience bullying at some point and 10-15% may be either chronic victims or bullies themselves (1, 2).  Over 15% of students that miss school report fear of being bullied as the reason, with 1 of every 10 victims dropping out or changing schools as a result of the bullying experience.

There has been a paradigm shift regarding how we view bullying behavior, as well as how we intervene. No longer considered a “normal” part of growing up, we now know that bullying can lead to negative short- as well as long-term physical and psychological effects, even lethal consequences. Some consider school bullying the most significant public health concern facing children and adolescents today. In part, this concern comes from the steady rise of cyber bullying – a type of bullying associated with high aggression among its teenage predators and victim suicide, or “bullycide” (e.g., 3).

School bullying is the best single predictor of psychiatric symptoms among pediatric patients (2), with serious immediate (e.g., suicide) and long-term psychiatric symptoms and psychological disorders reported for the victim, as well as the bully and the bully-victim – not to mention these children’s schools, families, and communities. Compelling data suggest that bullying is associated with school-based violence and school shooters. The U.S. Secret Service and the Department of Education examined factors from 37 school shooting incidents in the U.S. between 1974-2000 and concluded that a significant factor among shooting perpetrators was having been bullied by one’s peers (4).

This online CE course promotes the continued shift on bullying by providing mental health professionals with information and skills to identify common forms of school-based bullying and to assess developmental, causal and environmental risk factors and traits associated with bullies, bully-victims and victims. The course discusses the short- and long-term impact of bullying on victims, as well as the impact on bullies or bully/victims. Current prevention methods, anti-bullying interventions and other resources for students, parents and school staff are presented. Collectively, this information will enable psychologists, social workers, counselors and other allied health professionals working in this context to better prevent and/or detect bullying and/or victim behaviors exhibited in school-age children and pro-actively and professionally intervene (e.g., 5).

About HealthForumOnline:
Mental health professionals can chose from HFO’s 20 categories of continuing education (CE) topics related to health psychology and behavioral medicine containing over 90 online CE courses that are fast, convenient and cost-effective. HealthForumOnline (HFO) is approved as a provider of CE courses by the American Psychological Association, the National Board of Certified Counselors, the Association of Social Work Boards, and the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. HFO’s CE Program’s Advisory Committee and authors are comprised of over 65 nationally-recognized experts in behavioral medicine.

1. Olweus, D., et al. (1999). Bullying Prevention Program: Blueprints for Violence Prevention, Book Nine. Blueprints for Violence Prevention Series (D.S. Elliott, Series Editor). Boulder, CO: Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence, Institute of Behavioral Science, University of Colorado.

2. Kumpulainen, K. (2008). Psychiatric conditions associated with bullying. International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health, 20(2), 121-132.

3. Gofin, R., et al. (2012). Traditional versus internet bullying in junior high school students. Maternal Child Health Journal, 16(8), 1625-1635.

4. Final Report and Findings of the Safe School Initiative: Implications for the Prevention of School Attacks in the United States (2002). U.S. Secret Service – National Threat Assessment Center (NTAC) and U.S. Department of Education, Washington, DC.

5. Kochanska, G., et al. (2013). Children’s callous-unemotional traits moderate links between their positive relationships with parents at preschool age and externalizing behavior problems at early school age. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 54(11), 1251-1260.