The self-report assessment has been most commonly used to estimate bullying/victimization (B/V) rates in most domestic and international prevalence studies. However, the presence of many potential biasing factors in such an assessment method, including specific operationalization/measurement strategies and testing conditions, has become an issue due to a considerable variability in reported involvement rates across studies. This study analyzed self-reported B/V involvement rates on Olweus Bullying Questionnaire (OBQ) among 690 Korean middle school students by gender and two different cut-offs (generous vs. strict cut-offs) and examined if the involvement rates were significantly varied by testing conditions such as presentation vs. omission of a precise definition of B/V, anonymous vs. non-anonymous/confidential administration, and the use of global vs. specific questions. Chi-square analyses revealed that boys displayed higher involvement rates on global measures of B/V and on items related to direct forms of B/V, with no significant gender differences on specific measures of relational B/V rates. It was also found that a global rate of bullying and specific rates of verbal B/V were 111% to 157% higher when no definition was provided. However, anonymous vs. non-anonymous administration had no significant impacts on rates of involvement, except for one item; there were also no significant differences in reported degrees of frankness and perceived confidentiality of their responses across two adminstration conditions. Finally, when involvement rates were assessed by using specific vs. global items, they were 68% to 148% higher with binominal correlations in low to moderate ranges. Findings also indicated that global items had a high specificity but a relatively low sensitivity. Implications of these findings were fully discussed for researchers and practitioners in the field of B/V assessment.
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