The role of popular girls in bullying and intimidating boys and other popular girls in secondary school

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticle


Despite a large amount of research focusing on bullying and exclusion in secondary schools, there is far less research focusing on cross‐gender bullying and ‘popular’ students who experience bullying. This research provides an analysis of interactions between male and female students (aged 13–14) in a school in England. The data provides multiple examples, both in the form of observations and group interviews, of girls teasing, intimidating and bullying boys and other popular girls. The analysis also considers teachers’ reactions to this behaviour, highlighting that it is often unnoticed. This paper raises this as an area for concern and suggests that future research should explore this further, both gaining more in‐depth knowledge of female bullying and intimidation of boys and popular girls, and exploring ways of working with teachers and schools to support students.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2
Pages (from-to)212–229
Number of pages18
JournalBritish Educational Research Journal
Issue number2
Early online date25 Feb 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2018


Cite this