Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology (PhD)

Degree Level



Psychological Science


Timothy A. Cavell

Committee Member

Ana J. Bridges

Second Committee Member

Douglas A. Behrend


internalizing maladjustment, multi-informant assessment, parameters, peer victimization, predictive utility, school bullying


Peer victimization has been linked to maladjustment in school-age children. However, the field is less clear about how different parameters of peer victimization (e.g., frequency, stability) confer risk to children. In this study, I evaluated the extent to which key parameters (operationalized as distinct peer victimization indices) predicted internalizing maladjustment in 4th grade children (N = 445). From self-, teacher-, and peer-reported victimization data gathered at three time points within an academic year, I generated the following indices: Mean Level, Stability, Cross-Informant Agreement, and Informant Source. Controlling for baseline internalizing scores, hierarchical multiple regressions indicated that: a) only self-reported Mean Level and Stability, and Cross-Informant Agreement at Time 3 (T3) predicted internalizing outcomes; b) teacher- and peer-reported victimization did not predict internalizing adjustment; c) victimization self-reports at T3 were the best predictors of internalizing maladjustment; d) predictive utility of the indices was modest at best; and e) internalizing functioning at T1 accounted for most of the variance explained by the models. Post-hoc analyses found: a) gender moderated the relation between victimization self-reports and internalizing outcomes; and b) race/ethnicity moderated the relation between peer-reports and internalizing outcomes. Results were discussed through the lens of conceptual frameworks (e.g., information processing models, social ecological models) hypothesized to play a role in the development of internalizing maladjustment as a direct or indirect consequence of peer victimization. Limitations, implications for research and practice, and future directions were discussed.