Steve Minton
How do children and teenagers in schools get along with one another?

Dr Steve Minton

Starting this past year, and working collaboratively with participating schools, we have begun to collate data on how children and teenagers in schools in the Southwest get along with one another, including information regarding the incidence and typology of bullying behaviour. This data collection involves children / teenagers at schools completing standardised (and anonymised) questionnaires, which is done on-line. Nearly twenty years of experience in Ireland has shown me that such information is invariably helpful to school leaders and teachers who, through their schools’ participations, can receive (naturally, fully anonymised) information relating to the findings in their school, and can use then use this to shape and inform their ongoing efforts to prevent and counter bullying, and to promote pro-social behaviour. Schools who are interested in participating in the future are invited to contact me directly ( 

Nadege Bault
Social comparisons and social decision making in children and adolescents

Dr Nadège Bault, Dr Patricia Kanngiesser
Pat Kanngiesser

How does our capacity for social comparison develop? How does it influence children’s and adolescents’ decision making. Dr Bault showed in past research with adults that their feelings about the outcome of past decisions was influenced by how others performed in similar situations. For instance, adults found it more rewarding to outperform others in an experimental setting than completing the task all by themselves. Some individuals appear more sensitive to this social comparison effect than others, but how does the capacity for social comparison arise during development? To what extent do social comparisons influence the development of cooperative and competitive attitudes? These are the questions we aim to answer as part of a new online study.

Helen Lloyd
Investigating the relationship between social and psychological variables with online video gaming in school age children

Dr Helen Lloyd

There is ongoing debate and accumulating evidence about the relative harms and benefits of video game use in children. Dr Helen Lloyd and Master’s student Dora Best will explore how social and psychological variables (mood, cognition, personality) interact with online video gaming in school age children and how these relate to wellbeing. More specifically we are interested how and why children engage with micro transactions (e.g. items purchased with real money such as loot boxes, Fifa cards, skins) and any benefits or dis-benefits of this activity. Children between the ages of 9-16 will be asked to complete an online survey probing the above questions. Children will also be asked to complete a brief set of questionnaires on their frequency and intensity of online game play and their experience of this. Focus groups with parents will be used to explore parental views on video gaming and their knowledge and awareness of in game micro transactions. Findings from the research will be provided as feedback to participating schools and have the potential to complement Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PHSE) on the use of video gaming as per the National Curriculum.
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