Skip Navigation LinksHome > October 2008 - Volume 29 - Issue 5 > Violent Adolescents and Their Educational Environment: A Mul...
Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics:
doi: 10.1097/DBP.0b013e318175330d
Original Article

Violent Adolescents and Their Educational Environment: A Multilevel Analysis

Thurnherr, Judit MD; Berchtold, André PhD; Michaud, Pierre-André MD; Akre, Christina MA; Suris, Joan-Carles MD, PhD

Collapse Box


Objective: This study examined the respective roles of personal and environmental factors in youth violence in a nationally representative sample of 7548 postmandatory school students and apprentices ages 16–20 years in Switzerland.

Methods: Youth violence was defined as having committed at least one of the following in the previous 12 months: attacking an adult, snatching something, carrying a weapon, or using a weapon in a fight.

Different ecological levels were tested, resulting in a three-level model only in males (individual, classroom, and school) as the low prevalence of female violence did not allow for a multilevel analysis. Dependent variables were attributed to each level. For males, the classroom level (10%) and the school level (24%) accounted for more than one third in interindividual variance.

Results: Factors associated with violence perpetration in females were being a victim of physical violence and sensation seeking at the individual level. In males, practicing unsafe sex, sensation seeking, being a victim of physical violence, having a poor relationship with parents, being depressed, and living in a single-parent household at the individual level; violence and antisocial acts at the classroom level; and being in a vocational school at the school level showed a correlation with violence perpetration.

Conclusion: Interventions at the classroom level as well as an explicit school policy on violence and other risk behaviors should be considered a priority when dealing with the problem of youth violence. Furthermore, prevention should take into account gender differences.

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

Follow Us



Article Tools


Article Level Metrics

Search for Similar Articles
You may search for similar articles that contain these same keywords or you may modify the keyword list to augment your search.