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Questionnaires - Why conduct surveys as to the prevalence of bullying in your school?

Questionnaires relating to bullying in schools can serve a number of purposes:

  • They can help to raise awareness of bullying going on in a school, the forms it is taking, and the effects it is having on vulnerable students. Without such awareness in school and the school community, a whole-school approach to bullying cannot take place. Questionnaires that enable students to relate their experiences and describe their feelings are often most important in raising awareness.
  • They can help schools to identify groups, for example according to years and gender, where the problem is most severe. This information enables schools to prioritise targets.
  • They can help in monitoring changes over time in response to anti-bullying programs. But this can only occur only if the measures are reliable and appropriate research designs and valid statistical analyses are undertaken.
  • They can provide a means of involving parents to gain their cooperation. Schools can greatly benefit from their experience and understanding. Parental cooperation is essential.
  • They can help teachers to understand the attitudes and beliefs of students about bullying. For example, how they feel about students who are repeatedly being bullied and whether they are prepared to help them. If you don't ask, you don't find out.
  • They can help teachers to appreciate differences and similarities among staff members in how they view bullying and how they think it should be countered. Such awareness is needed if schools are to develop agreed policies and practices.
Specific purposes of questionnaires
Questionnaires relating to bullying may serve somewhat different purposes and users should consider carefully which to select. Here is a brief guide:

  1. To obtain an overall picture of the prevalence of bullying at a school, how groups and individuals are being affected and opinions on how bullying can best be countered the Peer Relations Assessment Questionnaire (PRAQ-R) is most appropriate.
  2. You may be interested in the responses of particular groups or in all the groups relevant to understanding bullying at your school. The PRAQ-R package contains questionnaires for (i) young children (8 and under), (ii) older students, (iii) teachers, (iv) parents. Note: The PRAQ-Rs are available from the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) for a fee. (See below).
The following questionnaires are freely available through Ken Rigby. They can be downloaded from this site or by contacting him at

  1. A brief questionnaire which assesses the prevalence of forms of bullying behaviour in a school: The Bullying Prevalence Questionnaire (BPQ) produced by Rigby and Slee.
  2. Students attitudes towards victims can be assessed using the Revised Pro-victim Scale (RPVS)
  3. Information on how staff members at a school believe cases of bullying can best be handled can be obtained by applying the Handling Bullying Questionnaire (HBQ)produced by Bauman and Rigby.
  4. For researchers who want to make use of an in-depth instrument assessing a range of different aspects of bullying in schools the Peer Relations Questionnaire (PRQ) by Rigby and Slee can be accessed. This questionnaire generates more information than schools typically require and is of interest mainly to research specialists.
Details of the questionnaires

The Peer Relations Assessment Questionnaires - Revised (PRAQ-R) is a survey package designed to obtain useful information about bullying in schools from three different sources: teachers, parents and students.
Soft copies of the manual and questionnaires are provided to offer schools unlimited use of the questionnaires. This encourages the use of the PRAQ-R for the whole school and follow-up surveys that allow schools to track the effectiveness of interventions.

  1. PRAQ-R for Junior Students aims to provide information from students from Reception to Year 5. This questionnaire has been designed to be used by younger students. It makes use of cartoons and illustrations that are appropriate for young children with limited reading skills. It enables the teacher to understand better the quality of children's relationships with peers, the nature and prevalence of bullying and their readiness to seek help.
  2. PRAQ-R for Senior Students seeks to identify the nature and prevalence of bullying in schools, where it takes place, consequences for students in general, perceptions of teachers' concern for the problem and students' wish to engage in joint action with the staff.
  3. PRAQ-R for Teachers provides information about the perceived prevalence of different forms of bullying in the school, how safe the school is, the extent to which bullying occurs between staff and students, motivation of the staff to address bullying and views on specific steps that a school can take to address the issue.
  4. PRAQ-R for Parents provides information about how happy a child is at school, how often the child is bullied or bullies others, how the child has been affected by bullying and what views parents have about addressing the problem.
The information obtained from different sources helps schools to provide a comprehensive and reliable picture of many aspects of bullying among students, as well as providing guidance in setting up relevant policies and procedures.

Excel spreadsheets are provided to streamline the scoring and collation of data to provide results that can be used for follow-up discussion and intervention.

Costs in Australian dollars (at time of publication):

Peer Relations Assessment Questionnaires - Revised (PRAQ-R)

Whole School Set - All files, Unlimited downloads on CDROM
Whole School Set with How Schools Counter Bullying
Junior Student Set (Manual, Primary Parent Form PDF, Primary Teacher Form PDF, Primary Student Form PDF, Excel Spreadsheets, Unlimited downloads on CDROM
Junior Student Set with How Schools Counter Bullying
Senior Student Set (Manual, Secondary Parent Form PDF, Secondary Teacher Form PDF, Secondary Student Form PDF, Excel Spreadsheets, Unlimited downloads on CDROM
Senior Student Set with How Schools Counter Bullying

To obtain copies contact:
Private Bag 55, Camberwell, VIC. Australia 3124
p: +61 3 9277 5447 | f: +61 3 9277 5499 | e: | w:

A further questionnaire is available through ACER produced by Donna Cross et al as part of the Australian Friendly Schools Program.



Download the .pdf document here.
Show how often the statements are true of you. To do this tick one of the answers underneath each statement on the questionnaire.
coring of the Bullying Prevalence Questionnaire (BPQ)

This questionnaire contains 3 sub-scales and several filler items. The scoring of the scales is as follows:

Never = 1
Once in a while = 2
Pretty often = 3
Very often = 4

Items belonging to the Scales are these:

Bully Scale:
4, 9, 11, 14, 16, 17
Victim Scale: 3, 8, 12, 18, 19

Pro-Social Scale:
5, 10, 15, 20
For a shorter 12-item scale (without filler items) the items underlined should be used, as in the published article: Rigby, K. and Slee, P.T. (1993). Dimensions of interpersonal relating among Australian school children and their implications for psychological well-being. Journal of Social Psychology, 133(1), 33-42.


Download the .pdf document here.
Instructions for completion: Read each of the sentences carefully and show how strongly you agree or disagree with it. Do this by circling one of the answers in the downloaded document.
Scoring of the Revised Pro-Victim Scale

Items are scored as follows:
Items: 1,3,4,6 and 8 Agree = 1, Unsure =2, Disagree = 3
Items: 2,5,7,9 and 10 Agree =3, Unsure =2, Disagree =1
Then Sum for the total score.

Rigby, K. (1997) Attitudes and beliefs about bullying among Australian school
children. Irish Journal of Psychology, 18, 2, 202 - 220.


Download the .pdf document here.

Teachers have alternative ways of dealing with incidents of bullying in a school.
To some extent, what is done depends on the circumstances in which the bullying takes place, and the severity of the bullying. It is, of course, sometimes difficult to generalize, but in answering the following questions, indicate what you think you might do.
Imagine the following scenario:
A 12-year-old student is being repeatedly teased and called unpleasant names by another, more powerful, student who has successfully persuaded other students to avoid the targeted person as much as possible. As a result, the victim of this behaviour is feeling angry, miserable, and often isolated.

Please tick the answer which is closest to what you think you would do.
In using this questionnaire cite The Handling Bullying Questionnaire (HBQ) (Bauman, Rigby & Hoppa, 2008).
Note: Feel free to make copies and use at your school with staff members. Afterwards you may find it useful to discuss why members answered as they did. It can be used to identify there is a general consensus or differences of opinion in a school staff about how cases of bullying should be handled.

Rigby, K & Bauman, S (2007) What teachers think should be done about cases of bullying. Professional Educator, ACER, Melbourne.
Bauman, S., Rigby, K., & Hoppa, K. (2008). US teachers' and school counsellors' strategies for handling school bullying incidents. Educational Psychology, 28, 837-56
Rigby, K and Bauman, S (2010) How school personnel tackle cases of bullying: A critical examination. In Shane Jimerson, Susan Swearer and Dorothy Espelage (Eds) The International Handbook of School Bullying, New York: Routledge, 455-468.