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Preventing Academic Bullying

Targets' Tip
Enrollment in this course is by invitation only

Access to this Course

To enroll in this course as an individual or a group, or to add the course to your institution’s or department’s learning management system, please email us at or use this contact form.

About This Course

This is a short, video-based, self-paced course that answers common questions about academic bullying so you can recognize it when you see it, know what to do about it, and understand how to protect yourself and others. The course consists of the following sections:

  1. Introduction
    Introduction to the course.
  2. Personal Stories
    Testimonials of several academics of various positions around the globe who have experienced bullying and how it has impacted their lives.
  3. What is Academic Bullying?
    Explanation of what constitutes bullying, the basic categories of bullying behavior, and how it affects those targeted.
  4. Why Does Academic Bullying Occur?
    Elaboration on reasons bullying is such a pervasive problem.
  5. What to Do—and Not to Do—If You’re a Target of Academic Bullying
    Points from experts and former targets of bullying on appropriate options for targets.
  6. The Role of Bystanders
    Presentation of options available to witnesses of academic bullying.
  7. What Academic Institutions Should Do About Academic Bullying
    Action plan for academia to address academic bullying at a larger scale.
  8. Is it Academic Bullying? You Decide
    Quiz in which participants are provided several scenarios and asked to distinguish between academic bullying and acceptable forms of academic and scientific conduct, followed by an expert opinion. Participants responding correctly receive a certificate acknowledging their ability to identify academic bullying and harassment and to protect themselves and others using the available resources.
  9. Conclusion
    Final wrap-up.

Course Staff

Dr. Morteza Mahmoudi

Morteza Mahmoudi, Ph.D.

Dr. Morteza Mahmoudi is an Associate Professor at Michigan State University. Prior to coming Michigan State University, he was an Assistant Professor at Harvard University. His research focuses on investigating nanomedicine and academic bullying and harassment. He received postgraduate training from University College Dublin (Ireland), École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Switzerland), the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Stanford School of Medicine, and Harvard Medical School. His studies on academic bullying and harassment have been published in top tier journals including Science, The Lancet, Nature, Nature Reviews Materials, and Nature Human Behaviour. He was among the highly cited researchers as reported by Clarivate Analytics in 2018 and 2020-2023.

Dr. Robert Dolan

Robert P. Dolan, Ph.D.

Dr. Robert P. Dolan is a neuroscientist and learning scientist, and serves as principal of Diverse Learners Consulting. With his expertise in software development, instructional design, and user experience design, Bob designs, implements, and evaluates flexible and effective solutions for diverse learners, including those with disabilities and those from traditionally underserved communities. Prior to working in the educational technology field starting in 2000, Bob spent ten years in medical research and software engineering. He has served as principal investigator on grants funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Education, as well as private foundations. Bob also serves as adjunct professor at Landmark College where he teaches educators about learning technologies appropriate for diverse learners. Bob earned his B.S. in Biology from Cornell and his Ph.D. in Brain and Cognitive Science from MIT.

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