Compass Brief: How systematic is international bullying and what relationship does it have with mathematics in the fourth grade?

Bullying is an international occurrence spanning over various cultures and economies. Children are bullied in primary schools around the world and those who are bullied tend to do less well in mathematics.

TIMSS 2015 also provides evidence of a strong association between bullying and fourth grade mathematics achievement. The amount of bullying varies widely but, on average, nearly half of all children in the TIMSS 2015 study report being bullied at least once a month.

Analysis of the fourth grade TIMSS 2015 results show that bullying begins at an early age, and achievement gaps betwen frequently and infrequently bullied students also emerge in the early years of education.

Bullying prevention policies need to be considered in the early years and TIMSS provides an important resource for policymakers and Scholars to monitor both existing and new anti-bullying interventions.