The Relationship Between Use of School-Based Peer Support Initiatives and the Social and Emotional Well-Being of Bullied and Non-bullied Students


Catherine Houlston, Unit for School and Family Studies, Department of Psychology, Goldsmiths, University of London, Tel.: 02079197870; Fax: 02079197873. E-mail:


This study investigated whether use of peer support initiatives in three secondary schools was related to Year 7 students’ positive perception of social support from peers and self-esteem. Results suggest that the use of these frameworks was related to higher perceived frequency of social support from other students, but not close friend support or self-esteem. The findings also provide support for a buffering model based on victim status. The relationship between the use of peer support schemes and well-being variables was stronger for bullied students. Using structured peer support schemes may provide protection from the negative associations of victimisation.