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Adolescence, Bullying, Depression and Social support
There have been empirical evidences revealing that depressed in-school adolescents with bullying experience are at increase rate on daily basis. This however calls for immediate attention to manage this new wave of bullying experience affecting students and making them depressed. On this note, the present study investigated on predictive power of social support in the management of depression among in-school adolescents with bullying experience in Ebonyi State. Two research questions and corresponding hypotheses which was tested at 0.05 level of significance was used for the study. The study used a correlation design with population of 120,882 students in 222 public secondary schools in Ebonyi State. The study through simple random sampling technique used the sample size of 480 depressed in-school adolescents identified with bullying experience using personal experiences checklist with a 32- item self-report (Hunt et al., 2012) and adapted bullying experience self-reported questions(Ngo et al., 2021). Social Support Inventory (SSI) and Reynolds Adolescents Depression Scale 2nd Edition (RADS-2) was used for data collection. Three validates face validated the instruments. Internal consistency reliability coefficients of 0.87 and 0.78 were obtained for SSI and RADS-2 using Cronbach alpha method. Linear regression was used to answer the research questions and t-test associated with linear regression was used to test the null hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The result indicated that both emotional and instrumental social support significantly predict depressed in-school adolescents with bullying experience to a high extent. Based on the results, it was recommended that Parents Teachers Association (PTA) and Non-Governmental Organizations should be active and supportive in providing essential materials and required information through an established platform targeted to curb the new wave of bullying behaviour making in-school adolescents depressed, Parents, teachers, friends and other important persons should always encourage preventive measures and proactive approach with a broader focus on giving attention, help and support to the emotional and physical need of in-school adolescents in case of any subjected psychological problems and violent experience, Ebonyi State government should collaborate with the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and other international organizations in making sure that necessary policies and efforts towards ameliorating bullying and psychological problems such as depression affecting in-school adolescents is highly and practically implemented among others.
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