Faculty Members' Experiences of Cyberbullying by Students at One Canadian University: Impact and Recommendations

Lida Marie Blizard


This two-phase mixed methods study adopted online survey and individual interview questions to explore faculty members’ experiences of cyberbullying by students at one Canadian university. Foucault's (1994) power relations theory was used to explore the power dynamic that can exist in the student-faculty relationship. The study found that cyberbullied faculty members were commonly female, over 40 years of age, English-speaking Canadian citizens, and held fulltime rank. Cyberbullying occurred namely via email, end-of-term faculty evaluation sites, and public polling sites (e.g. Ratemyprofessor.com), while students' dissatisfaction with grades was the most common precursor. Consistent with prior bullying and cyberbullying literature, this study also found that cyberbullied faculty members experienced detrimental effects, persisting from a few days to more than one year. The under-researched focus of this study advances existing workplace bullying and cyberbullying research by illuminating both the harmful implications of student-to-faculty cyberbullying, and the support measures deemed necessary by targeted individuals.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/irhe.v1n1p107


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International Research in Higher Education  ISSN 2380-9183 (Print)  ISSN 2380-9205 (Online)

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