Developing and evaluating the feasibility of a programme to support parents in preventing and reducing cyberbullying – MRes Scholarship

Developing and evaluating the feasibility of a programme to support parents in preventing and reducing cyberbullying

Location: Centre for Evidence Based Early Intervention, Bangor University

Project ID: BUK2E062
Annual Stipend: £11,702 p.a.
Application Deadline: 15th July 2022

The strongly evidenced KiVa school-based antibullying-programme provides lessons for children on all aspects of bullying, including cyber-bullying. It was introduced in the UK in 2012 and currently 150+ UK primary schools deliver it to more than 18,000 pupils. Lesson content for children includes how to recognise and stand against bullying and in relation to cyber-bullying how to stay Internet safe.

Internet usage has doubled since the COVID-19 lockdown putting increased numbers of children at risk. Many children use social-media to contact peers but some parents have limited understanding of bullying (including cyberbullying), its consequences, how to deal with incidents and general internet safety. Unlike traditional school-based bullying, cyber-bullying occurs anywhere at any time. This is likely to have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 situation when only virtual communication was available to many children. Parents are informed that their child’s school is delivering the KiVa programme and that resources include an online manual for parents however there are no specific components designed for parents.

This project will provide parents, who play a critical role in effective anti-bullying strategies, particularly in relation to online challenges, with accessible information and activities to help children establish supportive online peer relations and avoid bullying.

The project will adapt KiVa school lessons on cyberbullying and online safety into an online parent programme to provide wider access to this important material and teaching them how to prevent and deal with cyber-bullying, and stay cyber-safe. This should increase parental awareness of, and knowledge about, cyber- bullying and internet safety and could improve children’s long-term mental health.

Qualitative and qualitative methods to explore the development and feasibility of the resources through interviews and questionnaires for children, parents, and teachers.

The successful candidate will:

  • Review existing literature on advice to parents regarding cyber-bullying and internet safety
  • Adapt the existing KiVa lessons for children on cyber-bullying and cyber-safety into a web-based programme for parents
  • Engage a small sample of parents from existing KiVa schools in north-east Wales to trial the material
  • Explore programme acceptability and parental and child knowledge about cyber-bullying and online safety and whether the programme reduces inappropriate internet use.
  • Teacher perceptions on the parental involvement in knowledge sharing will also be explored.

Further information from Dr. Suzy Clarkson ( and/or Dr Margiad Williams (

Expected start date is 1st September 2022 (but would consider an earlier start).

To apply, send a CV and covering letter to Dr Suzy Clarkson ( and cc to Penny Dowdney by 15th July 2022.

Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarships (KESS 2 East) is a pan-Wales higher level skills initiative led by Bangor University on behalf of the HE sector in Wales. It is part funded by the Welsh Government’s European Social Fund (ESF) convergence programme for West Wales and the Valleys.

Due to ESF funding, eligibility restrictions apply to this scholarship. To be eligible, the successful candidate will need to be resident in East Wales on University registration, and must have the right to work in the region on qualification.