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UBC Theses and Dissertations

School violence : individual and group influences Danbrook, Matthew Charles


Weapon carrying at school has been explained by a number of theories, but two dominate the literature: being fearful and trying to protect oneself from harm (fear-victimization hypothesis) or displaying behaviour consistent with a deviant lifestyle (lifestyle theory). This study replicated previous research by investigating the relative and combined influence of individual level processes related to weapon carrying, as hypothesized by the fear-victimization hypothesis (i.e., fear of victimization and victimization experiences) and lifestyle theory (i.e., alcohol and drug use). This study extended previous research by also considering an ecological model of weapon carrying by examining school level processes that may impact student weapon-carrying. Data was obtained from students (N= 50,334) in grades 8-12 in 69 schools in Western Canada who completed the Safe Schools and Social Responsibility Survey. Multilevel modeling was used to evaluate both individual and school level variables that underlie the two major theories of weapon carrying among youth. Results at the individual level provided support for both the fear-victimization hypothesis and the lifestyle theory, suggesting multiple pathways to deviant behaviour. Support was also found for the hypothesis that some school-level variables, as reflected in the collective experiences of the student body, influenced the relationship between individual level processes (i.e., a students reported fear of victimization, victimization experiences, and substance use) and weapon carrying.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada