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Keywords:

  • friendship;
  • peer victimization;
  • school adjustment;
  • middle school

Abstract

This study investigates shared and unique associations of early adolescent friendship and peer victimization with self reports of school liking and teacher reports of academic competence. Participants were 398 sixth and seventh grade students and their teachers and peers. Measures of friendship included self reports of friendship support and mutual friendship nominations, and measures of peer victimization also included self and peer reports. Regression analyses revealed that friendship support and mutual friendships were uniquely associated with higher school liking and academic competence, and peer-reported victimization was uniquely associated with lower academic competence. Moderation analyses revealed that self-reported victimization was associated with lower school liking among students who reported higher friendship support but not among students who reported lower friendship support. The developmental context of findings and potential mechanisms are discussed.