Applying Depression-Distortion Hypotheses to the Assessment of Peer Victimization in Adolescents.

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De Los Reyes A, Prinstein MJ (Jun 2004) Applying depression-distortion hypotheses to the assessment of peer victimization in adoelscents, Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 33 (2), 325-35.



This study examined whether adolescents' depressive symptoms and aggressive behavior were associated with discrepancies between self- and peer-reports of peer victimization experiences. A sample of 203 10th-grade adolescents completed self-report measures of victimization and depressive symptoms as well as peer nominations of victimization and aggression. Residual scores were computed as a measure of discordance between peer- and self-reported peer victimization. Adolescents' aggressive behavior was associated with underestimations of peer victimization on self-reported measures, as compared to peer-reports, whereas depressive symptoms were associated with overestimations of peer victimization on self-report, as compared to peer-reports. Different patterns of findings were revealed for different forms of victimization (overt, relational, reputational) and by gender. Findings have implications for studies of adolescent peer victimization using multiple reporters and suggest that adolescents with high levels of depressive symptoms may be vulnerable to misperceptions of their social experiences among peers. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2007 APA, all rights reserved)(from the journal abstract)