Developmental Issues in the Prevention of Aggression and Violence in School

Sara E. Goldstein, Andrew M. Terranova, Sarah C. Savoy, Shaniqua Bradley, Jeanie Park, Paul Boxer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This chapter focuses on developmental issues in the primary prevention of aggressive behavior among children, adolescents, and emerging adults. The chapter emphasizes the importance of considering social, cognitive, and psychological development when designing and implementing primary prevention programs for youth. We also review developmental changes in aggressive behavior and associated social goals, discussing different forms and functions of aggression including variations in severity as well as relational/overt, cyberbullying and online aggression, and reactive/proactive distinctions. We also review research regarding sexual harassment and harassment based on gender, sexual orientation, and race, and we discuss prominent theories of the development of aggressive behavior. In our discussion of theory, we focus on Social Learning/Social Cognitive Information Processing (SCIP) Theory and aspects of Bioecological Theory. We conclude the chapter by specifically discussing what we know about the mediating mechanisms of aggression specifically from a SCIP perspective and how these can be utilized in developmentally sensitive prevention programs. Suggestions for future research and practice are also discussed, including ideas for online or socially distanced programming.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSchool Violence and Primary Prevention, Second Edition
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages35
ISBN (Electronic)9783031131349
ISBN (Print)9783031131332
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2023


  • aggression
  • harassment
  • prevention programming
  • primary prevention
  • youth development


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