An Investigation into Teachers’ Perceptions Regarding Cyberbullying Policies and Practices in UAE Schools

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
With the continuous technological advancement, educational institutions and teachers are facing growing challenges of cyberbullying (CB) among their students. Victims of electronic bullying report a lot of undesirable harmful outcomes on their physical and psychological well-being. Research has identified many strategies to cope with this growing predicament. However, a noteworthy gap is neglecting the immense role educators’ beliefs and concerns play in policy making and the implementation of these policies. The aim of this study is to understand teachers’ perspectives on cyberbullying school policies in the UAE and how confident they (teachers) are to apply them in order to manage CB incidents. Some recommendation to inform policy and practice in schools especially in a fast-developing country like the UAE is provided. A total of 60 teachers from different schools across UAE responded to a questionnaire adapted from (Li, 2008) about their perceptions of their school policies and practices on cyberbullying. Findings of this study indicate teachers’ awareness and concern about online harassment. Inconsistent schools’ attempts to increase this awareness and spreading it through training, classroom activities and parental discussions were noticed. Another significant conclusion is the recommendation by teachers for more education about this topic, especially through higher education.
United Arab Emirates (UAE), cyberbullying, policies, teachers’ perspectives, information technology