Student self-assessment of SEL competences and key mental health indicators

Presenters: Stephen Elliott, Ph.D., Daniella Maglione, Ed.S., M.S. and Chris Huzinec

Self-rating is the most widely used approach to the assessment of students’ SEL competences even though there are technical and practical challenges with such assessments. More than a dozen student self-assessment measures exist that focus on some aspects of social-emotional learning, but only the SSIS SEL family of student self-assessments are fully aligned with the CASEL competence framework, provide direct links to interventions, and also can concurrently provide indicators of mental health difficulties.

This webinar will examine the use of student self-assessments with 3rd through 12th graders as part of decisions regarding screening, intervention planning, and risk for social and mental health difficulties. In particular, research that has led to the SSIS Brief SEL Scales and SSIS Brief Social and Mental Health Scales student versions will be examined and an illustration of these assessments use in a multi-tiered student support system will be provided.

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Learner Outcomes

As a result of this activity, the participants will be able to:

  1. List some advantages for the use of student self-report assessments.
  2. Explain the importance of validity indices.
  3. Describe how positive social emotional health and negative social emotional stress are related.
  4. List reasons why it is likely that we would miss students with significant levels of emotional behavioural concerns when assessing only one SEL skill.


  • Identification of SEL Strengths, Skills, and Behaviours
  • Overview of SEL Competencies
  • Student Assessment Challenges
  • Validity Indices
  • Relationship between Positive Emotional Health and Negative
  • Social Emotional Stress
  • Importance of Assessing Multiple SEL Factors
  • Implementation of SEL Self-Assessments within a MTSS Framework


see more about the SSIS SEL

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