Associations between self-efficacy, bullying and health-related quality of life in a school sample of adolescents: A cross-sectional study


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BMC Public Health; 19, Article number: 757 (2019)



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To better understand health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in adolescents, it is important to gain knowledge about factors associated with HRQOL. Being involved in bullying is a significant threat to health, and social and psychological well-being; further, such problems can last into adulthood. The aim of this study was to explore the role of general self-efficacy (GSE) and bullying in relation to HRQOL. We specifically sought to study the prevalence of bullying, as well as the associations between both bullying and self-efficacy and HRQOL in a sample of adolescents. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study of 723 adolescents (12–18 years) attending schools selected using randomized cluster sampling. HRQOL was measured using the KIDSCREEN-52, self-efficacy was measured with the GSE scale, and bullying was measured using the two global questions from the Olweus bullying questionnaire. Multiple regression analyses were performed to explore how being bullied, bullying, and GSE were associated with variations in self-reported HRQOL. Results: Of the 723 adolescents, 13% reported being bullied; there were no gender differences within this finding. However, more boys than girls reported that they had bullied others. Both being bullied, and bullying others, were associated with lower HRQOL; however, being bullied was associated with the lowest scores. Higher self-efficacy was associated with better HRQOL. Self-efficacy contributed significantly to predicting variation in HRQOL. Conclusions: Being involved in bullying, as a victim or a bully, is associated with lower HRQOL. The association between GSE and HRQOL indicates that self-efficacy might be a resource for increasing HRQOL among adolescents. Our findings highlight the importance of targeting self-efficacy beliefs as an intervention strategy to improve GSE and HRQOL in adolescents involved in bullying.




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