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The purpose of the cyberbullying web page is to help BC teachers cope with cyberbullying in their classrooms and in their personal lives. 

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What is cyberbullying?

Cyberbullying has been defined by Canadian educator Bill Belsey  PDF file; Acrobat Reader required. as “the use of information and communication technologies (such as e-mail, cell phones, pager text messages, instant messaging, and defamatory personal websites) to support deliberate, repeated and hostile behaviour by an individual or group, that is intended to harm others”.

Belsey is the creator of  www.cyberbullying.org, the first website about the issue of cyberbullying. His article,  Cyberbullying: An Emerging Threat to the “always on” Generation   PDF file; Acrobat Reader required., provides further context and a general overview of the topic.

Tips for Teachers

The following materials on cyberbullying are primarily aimed at helping teachers cope with this issue.   

Canadian Teachers’ Federation. Cybertips for teachers.

Éthier, B. (2007).  Facebook. Caught in the web: Teachers must be cautious. The Manitoba Teacher, 86(1), 1.  PDF file; Acrobat Reader required. 

A short article reviewing some recent cases that have challenged the Manitoba Teachers’ Society to examine the negative utilization of Facebook, and other social networking tools. 


Newfoundland and Labrador Teachers’ Association (2008). Cyberconduct and electronic communications: Important information and and guidelines for teachers, Infosheet Number 26.


Stamping out Cyberbullying by building self-awareness, self-discipline and empathy
This workshop will help to develop self-awareness and empathy building around bullying and bystander issues. Key skills and strategies will be used to identify some of the underlying causes of bullying and help stamp out cyberbullying. Through talking circles and reflective listening activities, ideas will be presented on how to create a safe and inclusive classroom. There will be opportunities to further explore the teacher’s role as an elder and mentor to students.  
See  http://bctf.ca/ProfessionalDevelopment.aspx?id=31878  for booking information.

Articles & Reports

Canadian research on cyberbullying of students, as well as cyberbullying directed against teachers and other educators.

Brown, K., Jackson, M., & Cassidy, W. (2006). Cyber-bullying: Developing policy to direct responses that are equitable and effective in addressing this special form of bullying. Canadian Journal of Educational Administration and Policy, 57. Retrieved June 3, 2008 from

This article from Simon Fraser University reviews existing research on cyber-bullying, framed through a policy lens.  The development of effective policy required a collaborative effort involving all stakeholders – policymakers, school officials, parents and youth.

Browne, L. (2007). Ontario College of Teachers’ survey: Cyberbullying at the forefront of teacher concernsPDF file; Acrobat Reader required..

Lois Browne provides some relevant data from an Ontario College of Teachers’ survey, conducted by phone (5th annual State of the Teaching Profession).  84% of teachers report having been cyberbullied.

CCSO CyberCrime Working Group. (2013). Cyberbullying and the Non-consensual Distribution of Intimate Images. Report to the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Ministers Responsible for Justice and Public Safety.

Englander, Elizabeth (2012). Cyberbullying among 11,700 Elementary School Students, 2010-2012. In MARC Research Reports. Paper 4. 

Froese-Germain, B. (2007). Bullying in the digital age: Using technology to harass students and teachers  PDF file; Acrobat Reader required.. CTF Professional Development Perspectives, 7(1), 5-8.

Bernie Froese-Germain is a Researcher with the Canadian Teachers’ Federation and a member of the CTF workgroup on cyberbullying.  This article provides an overview of the problem and some suggested strategies for addressing the emerging issue.

Hango, D. (2016). Cyberbullying and cyberstalking among Internet users aged 15 to 29 in Canada. Insights on Canadian Society. December. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 75-006-X.

Jeong, S., and Lee, B.H. (2013). A multilevel examination of peer victimization and bullying preventions in schools, Journal of Criminology, 2013.

The goal of this study is twofold: (i) to develop an explanatory model to examine the relationship between school environment/climate and peer victimization and (ii) to determine whether previous models of preventive strategies in a single school or district could be expanded to the nationally representative sample of adolescents across multiple schools.

Li, Q. (2007). New bottle but old wine: A research of cyberbullying in schools. Computers in Human Behavior 23(4), 1777-91.

This study is an exploration of the cyberbullying issue with a primary focus on the nature and extent of adolescents' experiences.  A survey of 177 grade seven students from 2 middle schools in a large western Canadian city was analyzed to answer the research questions.  Dr. Li also has an e-bullying website with links called the Cyber Safety Toolkit.

Lines, E. (2007). Cyberbullying: Our kids’ new reality  PDF file; Acrobat Reader required.. Toronto, ON: Kids Help Phone.

This report is an analysis of nearly 2,500 responses to an online survey posted over a four-week period. Its main goal is to shed some light on cyber-bullying behaviour and the impact those behaviours can have on Canadian kids.

Mishna, F., et al. (2009) Interventions for Children, Youth, and Parents to Prevent and Reduce Cyber Abuse. Campbell Systematic Reviews 2009:2. Campbell Collaboration Systematic Reviews 2009:2.

This systematic review involves conducting a comprehensive examination of the literature in order to collect all evidence regarding strategies to prevent and intervene with respect to cyber abuse.

Shariff, S. (2005). Cyber-dilemmas in the new millennium: School obligations to provide student safety in a virtual school environmentMcGill Journal of Education, 40(3), 467-87.

This paper reviews the current policy vacuum as it relates to the legal obligations and reasonable expectations of schools to monitor and supervise on-line discourse, while balancing student safety, education, and interaction in virtual space.  Dr. Shariff is also Principal Investigator on 2 grants funded by SSHRC to develop a profile of cyberbullying, and develop guidelines to help schools address cyber-bullying.

Smith, A., Poon, C., Neumayer, H., & McCreary Centre Society. (2016). Untangling the web: Online safety and sexting among BC youth . Vancouver, BC: McCreary Centre Society.

         This study uses data from the 2013 BC Adolescent Health Survey as a result of surveying
         30,000 students across the province.

Steeves, Valerie. (2014). Young Canadians in a Wired World, Phase III: Dealing with Online Meanness, Cruelty and Threats: MediaSmarts.


Recent books about cyberbullying, with links for more information.

Englander, E.K. (2013). Bullying and cyberbullying: What every educator needs to know. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press.

Hinduja, S., & Patchin, J.W. (2015). Bullying beyond the schoolyard: Preventing and responding to cyberbullying. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

Kowalski, R. M., Limer, S. P., & Agatston, P. W. (2012). Cyber bullying: Bullying in the digital age. 2nd edition. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.  

Shariff, S. (2008). Cyber bullying: Issues and solutions for the school, the classroom and the home. New York, NY: Routledge. 

Willard, N. E. (2007). Cyberbullying and cyberthreats: Responding to the challenge of online social aggression, threats, and distress. Champaign, IL: Research Press. 


The Bully Project website has assembled tools and resources to help you prevent bullying and create a more caring respectful community.

Canadian Red Cross provides information on cyberbullying and abuse prevention.

The Cyberbullying.ca website project, initiated by noted Canadian educator Bill Belsey, was created because he observed that cyberbullying has become a huge problem in other parts of the world, where mobile phones and other telecommunications tools are more deeply embedded in youth culture. This is the first website to address the issue of cyberbullying specifically.

Cybersmart Education not only addresses online safety and security issues, but also fosters 21st century skills to increase student engagement and prepare students to achieve in today’s digital society. 

Embrace Civility in the Digital Age (formerly the Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use). Nancy E. Willard’s website promotes approaches to address youth well-being and risk in the digital age in a manner that promotes positive norms, increases effective skills and resiliency, and encourages young people to be helpful allies who positively intervene when they witness peers being hurt or at risk.

Government of Canada provides information for parents on cyberbullying.

Kids in the Know the Canadian Centre for Child Protection’s national safety education program. The program engages students with interactive activities to help build skills that increase their personal safety and reduce their risk of victimization online and in the real world.

Media Smarts has developed a series of bilingual lessons to give students a better understanding of the ethical and legal implications of cyber bullying and to promote positive Internet use.

NeedHelpNow.ca, an initiative of the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, aims to provide information to youth who have been negatively impacted by a sexual picture or video being shared by peers. The site offers guidance to help young people get through the situation, and also offers tips for helping youth through a sexting or cyberbullying crisis.

The NetSmartz Workshop is an interactive, educational safety resource from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and Boys & Girls Clubs of America for children aged 5 to 17, parents, guardians, educators, and law enforcement that uses age-appropriate, 3-D activities teach children how to stay safer on the Internet.

PrevNet: Promoting Relationships and Eliminating Violence Network has basic information on what cyberbullying is.

STOP A BULLY allows any student in Canada to safely report serious incidents of bullying and cyberbullying to school officials. STOP A BULLY is a free service for all Canadian students and schools.

West Coast LEAF: Is that Legal?
This plain language legal guide was developed for youth and is a multilingual resource.

Compiled by BCTF Information Services
Last modified May 23, 2018

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