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Cyberbullying expert to give Dec. 3 presentation on campus

RELEASED: Nov. 29, 2010

Justin Patchin
Dr. Justin Patchin

EAU CLAIRE — A University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire faculty member who is an international expert on cyberbullying will give a presentation to the campus community this week.

Dr. Justin Patchin will present "Cyberbullying and Other Online Challenges: From High School to College" at noon Dec. 3 in the Presidents Room of Davies Center.

UW-Eau Claire's Student Affairs division will host the presentation.

A significant amount of media attention in recent years has highlighted the problem of cyberbullying among adolescents, said Dr. Beth Hellwig, vice chancellor for Student Affairs. This presentation will review how teens are using and misusing technology to cause harm to their peers, she said. It also will include results from Patchin's research as well as real-life examples from teens who have experienced cyberbullying.

"Even though almost all of Justin's research has focused on middle and high school students, we certainly know that similar behaviors occur, and have the potential to significantly harm, our university students," Hellwig said. "If the recent tragedy at Rutgers University suggests anything, it is that we can't simply ignore what our students are doing online."

Patchin's presentation will conclude with a discussion about what people can do to prevent these issues from affecting the campus community, Hellwig said.

Patchin, an associate professor of criminal justice, has conducted extensive research on adolescent behavior online. He has given presentations about cyberbullying to thousands of educators, teens and parents throughout the United States. His most recent book, "Bullying Beyond the Schoolyard: Preventing and Responding to Cyberbullying" (co-authored with Dr. Sameer Hinduja), examines the ways adolescents use technology to cause harm to their peers and what adults can do about it.

As co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center, Patchin maintains a cyberbullying website that includes a blog, a news feed and other features designed to get current information quickly to those who can use it. The site gets up to 1.5 million hits from 70,000 unique users a month.

Patchin also currently is a visiting scholar with the FBI, conducting research and training FBI staff on issues relating to cyberbullying.

Patchin has been interviewed extensively by media throughout the world about cyberbullying. In recent months, he's been interviewed by CNN, National Public Radio and The New York Times, in addition to many local and regional media outlets.

For information about the Dec. 3 presentation, contact Dr. Beth Hellwig at 715-836-5992 or hellwiba@uwec.edu.

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JB/DW

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