© 2011

Preventing Lethal School Violence


Part of the Advancing Responsible Adolescent Development book series (ARAD)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Jeffrey A. Daniels, Mary C. Bradley
    Pages 1-14
  3. Jeffrey A. Daniels, Mary C. Bradley
    Pages 15-27
  4. Jeffrey A. Daniels, Mary C. Bradley
    Pages 29-44
  5. Jeffrey A. Daniels, Mary C. Bradley
    Pages 45-56
  6. Jeffrey A. Daniels, Mary C. Bradley
    Pages 57-70
  7. Jeffrey A. Daniels, Mary C. Bradley
    Pages 71-86
  8. Jeffrey A. Daniels, Mary C. Bradley
    Pages 87-97
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 99-101

About this book


Bullying. Gang assaults. Rampage shootings. School violence, especially when it turns deadly, has enduring social and psychological effects on students, faculty, staff, and the community. And though a great deal of research focuses on the significant role children’s positive social development plays in reducing incidents of school violence, in-depth examinations of evidence-based preventive measures have remained minimal until now.

With its focus on averting lethal school violence, this unique volume translates the prosocial findings into practicable preventive measures that can be put to use in school settings. Making expert use of news reports as well as scholarly data, Preventing Lethal School Violence clarifies the links between bullying and lethal violence and delineates typical characteristics of school shooters while cautioning against outright profiling. Students’ awareness of self and others, strong connections with adults, and other social and ethical skills form the basis of a comprehensive, research-based model for reducing—and potentially eliminating—lethal incidents at school.

This accessible volume:

  • Outlines the scope of school violence as a broader social problem.
  • Summarizes current information on the traits common to students who commit lethal violence at school.
  • Examines the relationship between bullying/cyberbullying and rampage incidents.
  • Analyzes examples of successful prevention of violent acts and resolution of hostage situations.
  • Describes in detail the concept of positive school climate and introduces the Safe School Communities Model.
  • Synthesizes key research data into violence prevention skills for students, teachers, administrators, and all professionals working in schools.

Preventing Lethal School Violence is a must-have resource for researchers and professionals in school psychology and allied education disciplines, including school administration, school counseling, and social work.


bullying delinquency lethal acts mitigation negative behaviors positive school environment positive youth development school rampages school safety school shootings school violence violence violence prevention

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1., Department of CounselingWest Virginia UniversityMorgantownUSA
  2. 2.Indiana University SoutheastNew AlbanyUSA

About the authors

Jeffrey A. Daniels earned his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He is currently a professor in the Counseling Psychology program at West Virginia University, Morgantown. His professional interests relate to averted lethal school violence and barricaded hostage events in schools. Dr. Daniels continues to be engaged in research that examines these aspects of school violence. These unique contributions to the understanding of lethal school violence have resulted in numerous publications and conference presentations.

Mary C. Bradley earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Indiana University, Bloomington, where she began working with Dr. Daniels on his research of thwarted acts of school violence. Dr. Bradley has also researched non-lethal acts of school bullying, specifically as it relates to adolescent emotional and social-cognitive development.  Currently an assistant professor of Counselor Education at Indiana University-Southeast, Dr. Bradley truly loves teaching and training future educators.

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors
Health & Hospitals


From the reviews:

"During the mid-90s, as incidents of lethal violence spiked in schools across the United States, the issue of children's safety took center stage. In response, numerous publications and programs sprung up, focusing primarily on the underlying issues of school bullying and other forms of abuse. Still, little attention was paid to the violence itself, the people involved, how to deal with such events, or how to prevent them. By focusing directly on those involved in and affected by the most lethal events, Preventing Lethal School Violence bridges an important gap in the literature on school violence, addressing not only what we know about these events but how to put a stop to them."
- Richard Hazler, Ph.D., PCC, NCC
Professor-in-Charge of Counselor Education
The Pennsylvania State University


“School violence (due to, for example, rebellion, anger, protest, random acts) has become a major concern around the globe. Daniels (counseling psychology, West Virginia Univ., Morgantown) and Bradley (counselor education, Indiana Univ., Southeast) look at a range of situations, from barricaded captives to suicide, domestic murder, and death related to fights, gangs, and rampage shootings. … They point out that mental-health intervention should be available to teachers and administrators as well as students. … Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty and professionals.”
- S. M. Valente, Choice, Vol. 49 (1), September, 2011


"Daniels and Bradley have done an excellent job. They have given us a convincing and compelling summary of what is known about the causes and conditions surrounding lethal school violence and have illustrated how this knowledge can be used to develop a culture in schools that avoids the conditions sometimes resulting in lethal school violence. The two final chapters make a strong contribution to the literature. Here the authors describe their model and the positive steps that schools and communities can take to create a climate in which lethal school violence is less likely to occur. …

All in all, this slender volume packs a big punch, tackling with vigor and promise a deplorable aspect of modern society."
- John M. Davis and Randall E. Osborne, PsycCRITIQUES, October 19, 2011, Vol. 56, Release 42, Article 3

“Preventing Lethal School Violence will be of special interest to school counselors as well as to school administrators and teachers. … also be relevant for graduate faculty and students in counseling, psychology, and school psychology master’s and doctoral programs. … should be of interest to parents, community leaders, and law enforcement personnel, all of whom can play a role in preventing lethal school violence. All in all, this slender volume packs a big punch, tackling with vigor and promise a deplorable aspect of modern society.” (John M. Davis and Randall E. Osborne, PsycCRITIQUES, Vol. 56 (54), October, 2011)