Longitudinal associations between popularity and aggression in Chinese middle and high school adolescents.

The longitudinal associations between popularity, overt aggression, and relational aggression were assessed in middle school and high school cohorts drawn from a large urban Northwest Chinese city. The middle school (n = 880; 13.33 years.) and high school samples (n = 841; 16.66 years.) were each followed for 2 years. In the concurrent regression analyses, overt aggression was more strongly and consistently associated with popularity than relational aggression after controlling for likability. Cross-lagged analyses revealed that popularity predicted subsequent increases in overt and relational aggression throughout middle and high school whereas overt aggression at 7th and 10th grade predicted increases in popularity 1 year later. These findings provide further evidence that popularity is associated with aggression and suggest that overt and relational aggression may be a consequence rather than a contributor to popularity in Chinese adolescents. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved)