Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



First Advisor

Karen Kochel


Research examining the predictors of peer victimization, the experience of being aggressed upon by one’s peers, is important because studies have shown that peer victimization can have negative mental health and academic outcomes. This research aimed to examine classroom sense of belonging, the degree to which children feel that they are a valuable part of their class, as a predictor of peer victimization, with the hypothesis that high classroom belonging would be predictive of lower peer victimization among third through fifth grade students (N = 233; 119 female; Mage at recruitment = 9.48, SD = .68). A second objective was to evaluate whether or not friendship quality would alter the association between belongingness and peer victimization. Self-report data on classroom belonging, peer victimization, and aspects of friendship quality were collected at two time points (T1 and T2) separated by a 6-month lag. Results from multiple regression analyses found that belongingness at T1 was predictive of peer victimization at T2. The interaction of classroom belonging and friendship quality (companionship; help/aid) at T1 was not predictive of victimization at T2. Findings reveal the importance of classroom sense of belonging as a predictor of peer victimization. Despite the fact that friendship has often been found to serve a protective function, friendship quality did not moderate the association between belonging and victimization in the current study.