Key Questions

1. What are the nature, types, importance, and uses of SEL frameworks?

2. What are the current challenges that the multitude of frameworks present for practice?  How do we address them?

3. What are the criteria for rating the extent to which a framework is conceptually clear, is based on evidence, and has different types of implementation supports?


Recognizing the value and importance of frameworks in guiding social and emotional learning (SEL) efforts and their measurement, a team of organizations convened a group of leaders, informally called the Assessment Work Group (AWG), to create the Establishing Practical Social-Emotional Competence Assessments of Preschool to High School Students Project. The project recognized the importance of solid SEL frameworks to guide not only how you measure SEL but also how you think about it, communicate it, and act upon it.

The AWG’s series of framework briefs is designed to help practitioners better understand and grapple with the challenges and opportunities multiple SEL frameworks can present. This is the third in an introductory series of three briefs, designed to answer the research questions.  All the briefs are intended to support systems, schools, and community organizations as well as individual practitioners’ working to advance their SEL efforts and improve youth’s intra- and inter-personal social and emotional competencies.

Five Criteria for Conceptual Clarity

  1. Specificity
  2. Balance
  3. Developmental
  4. Culturally Sensitive
  5. Empirically Grounded

Five Criteria for Implementation Support

  1. Intended for Practice
  2. Resources for Practitioners
  3. Resources for Use with and by Children and Youth
  4. Resources for Measurement and Data Use
  5. Empirically Tested
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