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ACT's SEL Experts Blog on Skill Building for CASEL

Recently, ACT researchers and SEL experts published two blogs on the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning's (CASEL) website to discuss advances in SEL skill-building. View excerpts and links to the full blog posts below.

Click to tweet: .@ACT resident #SEL experts blogged about 1) developing performance level descriptors to determine the effectiveness of behaviors in #SEL, and 2) using #SEL assessment reports to empower #student growth. Check it out: http://bit.ly/2sm1g84

January 10, 2018

One Standard Does Not Fit All: Creating Levels of SEL Effectiveness across School and Work

By Steven Manning, Ph.D. candidate, Jason Way, Ph.D., Alex Casillas, Ph.D.; ACT, Inc.

Educational leaders continue to recognize the value of enhancing social and emotional learning (SEL) and the importance of developing and measuring these skills in youth. Along with core academic skills, such as math, science, and English language arts, developing SEL skills has a positive impact on students’ success through their education and into their professional careers. Because measurement of SEL is relatively new when compared to core academic skills, it is often unclear which skills are appropriate to expect of students from elementary through postsecondary school settings.

Clearly, we expect a difference between the typical high school and elementary student, but how do we determine which skills and specific behaviors are effective for different developmental and grade levels? Additionally, how can we leverage these different levels to more effectively develop students’ skills? In this post, we address these questions by using ACT researchers’ development of performance level descriptors (PLDs) as a guiding example for addressing the effectiveness of various behaviors in social and emotional learning skills....Read More

Click to tweet: "Creating descriptions, assessments, and inventions for SEL skills from #education through #careers will allow for a similar development of these skills for students..." More #ACTInsights from @ACT #SEL experts: http://bit.ly/2sm1g84

January 31, 2018

Using SEL Assessment Reports with Students: Insights for Empowering Growth

By Jonathan E. Martin, Director of K12 Consulting Services and a member of the SEL team at ACT.

Who are the figures most important to the work of developing Social Emotional skills in the students in our schools: Teachers, Parents, Administrators, or Counselors?

How easy it is to forget that the best answer is always the student him or herself!

As students at City High School, a charter school in Tucson, ready themselves for college and careers, they’re eager to receive an affirmation of the skills they already have, and also to better understand what they should focus on improving before making their giant leap beyond secondary schooling—but not only in their academic subjects. They also want to know how they are doing in their critical personal attributes, such as teamwork, tenacity, and resilience. They know how important these skills are, and yet, to their frustration, they get only comparatively very little feedback in this crucial domain....Read More

Click to tweet: #Students are eager to understand themselves and seek reliable results to develop their #SEL skills, says @JonathanEMartin in a blog for @caselorg: http://bit.ly/2sm1g84


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ACT is a mission-driven, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people achieve education and workplace success. Headquartered in Iowa City, Iowa, ACT is trusted as a leader in college and career readiness, providing high-quality assessments grounded in nearly 60 years of research. ACT offers a uniquely integrated set of solutions designed to provide personalized insights that help individuals succeed from elementary school through career.

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