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Social and emotional learning

Our current symposium series is dedicated to understanding social and emotional learning and its contribution to closing the achievement and opportunity gaps.

This series is sponsored by the Minnesota 4-H Foundation Howland Family Endowment for Youth Leadership Development.

Upcoming training and presentations

    Cultural Resilience: A framework for promoting assets

    Dale Blyth JuanCarlos Arauz

    To fully address youth's learning and gaps in academic performance, we need to redefine educational excellence in a global society. At this symposium, Dr. JuanCarlos Arauz will share a framework for creating a rigorous inclusive environment with a diverse community. He will discuss how to reframe the concept of equity issues from a deficit approach to an asset-based approach by identifying the skills young people gain from their diverse life experiences and translate them into success within and beyond the classroom.

    Oct. 2, 2014, 8:30 a.m. -12 noon

    Register to attend in-person or online


    Cultural Resilience: How to find the brilliance in our youth

    This hands-on training, facilitated by Dr. JuanCarlos Arauz, is for those working directly with young people. It will provide participants with a critical pedagogy framework for working within a diverse community, tools to identify strengths in every young person – especially those who are disengaged from learning or come from marginalized communities – and strategies for sharing these concepts with the broader community. Participants will walk away with suggested practice ideas they can use to identify and translate life experiences into skills.

    Oct. 3, 2014, 9 a.m. -12 noon


Past presentations

    Social and emotional learning: Assess it to address it

    Gil Noam Kimberly Schonert-Reichl Gil Noam and Kimberly Schonert-Reichl

    Explore what communities have actually done to measure youth more holistically and how they've used data at the neighborhood, school and program level to enhance social and emotional learning. This symposium is not about what to measure, but about the opportunities that emerge when measuring social and emotional learning, as well as strategies for addressing the challenges that arise. May 6, 2014

    Web recording will be available soon.


Reports & articles

Beyond Content: Incorporating Social and Emotional Learning into the Strive Framework
Strive Together
This report is organized into three volumes – Volume I identifies and defines competencies that are clearly related to academic achievement and are malleable, Volume II summarizes available measures in the context of the cradle-to-career continuum, and Volume III offers a compendium of assessment tools. 2013

After school programs that follow evidence-based practices to promote social and emotional development are effective.
Joseph Durlak, Roger Weissberg
This brief is to summarize the findings which indicated that afterschool programs that follow four evidence-based practices are successful in promoting young people’s personal and social development. 2012

Education for Life and Work: Developing Transferable Knowledge and Skills in the 21st Century.
National research council
An important set of key skills which include problem solving, critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and self-management - often referred to as "21st century skills" increase deeper learning, college and career readiness, student-centered learning, and higher order thinking. 2012

Teaching adolescents to become learners. The role of noncognitive factors in shaping school performance: A critical literature review.
Camille Farrington, Melissa Roderick, Elaine Allensworth, Jenny Nagaoka, Tasha Seneca Keyes, David Johnson, Nicole Beechum
Consortium on Chicago School Research brought its trademark approach to school reform: using research and data to identify what matters for student success and school improvement, creating theory-driven frameworks for organizing the research evidence, and asking critical questions about the applicability of research to practice. 2012

From Soft Skills to Hard Data: Measuring Youth Program Outcomes
Forum for Youth Investment
Out-of-school time programs can help youth develop skills and attributes they need to be ready for college, work and life, but few have the tools to effectively measure those outcomes. This guide reviews eight youth outcome measurement tools appropriate for use in after-school and other settings. 2011

The impact of enhancing students’ social and emotional learning: A meta-analysis of school-based universal interventions.
Joseph Durlak, Roger Weissberg, Allison Dymnicki, Rebecca Taylor, Kriston Schellinger
Findings from a meta-analysis of 213 school-based, universal social and emotional learning (SEL) programs involving 270,034 kindergarten through high school students. 2011

Promoting Social and Emotional Development Is an Essential Part of Students’ Education.
Joseph Durlak, Roger Weissberg
This essay argues for the positive impact of school wide programs for Social and Emotional Development. 2011

A Meta-Analysis of After-School Programs That Seek to Promote Personal and Social Skills in Children and Adolescents
Joseph Durlak, Roger Weissberg, Molly Pachan
A meta-analysis of after-school programs that seek to enhance the personal and social skills of children and adolescents indicated that, compared to controls, participants demonstrated significant increases in their self-perceptions and bonding to school, positive social behaviors, school grades and levels of academic achievement, and significant reductions in problem behaviors. 2010

The positive impact of social and emotional learning for kindergarten to eighth-grade students: Findings from three scientific reviews.
Joseph Durlak, Roger Weissberg, Molly Pachan, Allison Dymnicki, Rebecca Taylor, Kriston Schellinger, J. Payton
Evidence is mounting that where and how youth spend their time outside of normal school hours has important implications for their development. 2008

The Positive Impact of Social and Emotional Learning for Kindergarten to Eighth Grade Students 
John Payton, Roger Weissberg, Joseph Durlak, Allison Dymnicki, Rebecca Taylor, Kriston Schellinger, Molly Pachan
This report summarizes results from three large-scale reviews of research on the impact of social and emotional learning (SEL) programs on elementary-
and middle-school students — that is, programs that seek to promote various social and emotional skills. 2008

Dale Blyth, Howland Endowed Chair

Dale Blyth

Dale Blyth serves as Howland endowed chair for the social and emotional learning series. In this role, Dale will create an initiative designed to broaden the understanding of socio-emotional factors in learning and development, help build consensus around their meaning and measurement, and promote assessments and actions that support their development for all young people. The initiative will be a partnership between the University of Minnesota (both the Extension Center for Youth Development and the Center for Applied Research and Educational Improvement where Dale is a Senior Research Fellow) and Youthprise. The initiative partnership will engage youth and adults, convene events, gather data, facilitate and align several working groups, support learning communities in this area, and help develop new resources.

From 1998 to 2011, Dale served as the associate dean for the Extension Center for Youth Development. In his career, Dale has served in multiple faculty and leadership roles including positions at the Search Institute, Cornell and Ohio State University. His research on adolescent and youth development has focused on transitions, community learning opportunities, social networks, collective impact, and developmental assets. He has also served in a role as a convener on critical issues in the field of youth development at a local and state level.

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