What is Social and Emotional Learning, and How Can Educators Promote It?

New learning styles formed by the pandemic have undoubtedly created a unique set of experiences for students. Returning to classrooms in the fall will bring to light new hobbies while battling developmental delays and social anxiety will surface the new coping skills developed. Due to these new issues arising for students, educators are faced with a unique challenge when it comes to reaching their student population. Now more than ever, Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) is an integral part of education development.

What is Social and Emotional Learning?

According to the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) that defined this concept over two decades ago, “SEL is the process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible caring decisions.”

What skills does SEL consist of?

The five core competencies of Social and Emotional Learning, according to CASEL include:

  1. Self-awareness: the ability to accurately recognize one’s own emotions, thoughts, and values and how they influence behavior.
  2. Self-management: the ability to successfully regulate one’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in different situations – effectively managing stress, controlling impulses, and motivating oneself.
  3. Relationship skills: the ability to establish and maintain healthy and rewarding relationships with diverse individuals and groups. As well as the ability to communicate clearly, listen well, cooperate with others, resist inappropriate societal pressure, negotiate conflict constructively, and seek and offer help when needed.
  4. Social awareness: the ability to take other perspectives into consideration, including those from diverse backgrounds and cultures, and the ability to empathize.
  5. Responsible decision-making: the ability to make constructive choices about personal behavior and social interactions based on ethical standards.

Why is SEL important in the new age of education?

Educators have always played an important part in a student’s developmental skills. They serve as advocates for the need to adjust outdated educational expectations, a task that is becoming increasingly urgent as we shift into a post-COVID education landscape. “Yes, COVID-19 upended higher education, but it’s also giving us a chance to do a reboot. We need to be more focused on meeting students where they are, not just physically, but emotionally,” Dr. Kurt Kraiger, a Professor and Chair of the Department of Management at the University of Memphis and the Principal Psychologist who created Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment, shares.

Most assessments only measure strengths, aptitude, or skills. These assessments bucket students together in broad groups, not taking their unique experiences and needs into consideration. At Tallo, we noticed the limitations and restrictions of this model of assessments and saw the need to do something different. There’s a lack of assessments that help a student know who they are currently so they can better communicate who they are to an educator, potential employer, or friends and family.

What’s more, employers have placed a higher emphasis on soft skills in recent years. Students who are able to confidently communicate their personality, interests, values, and workplace preferences to recruiters or potential employers will find greater success in finding the right fit after high school.

How to incorporate SEL in your classroom

 Tallo is proud to offer Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment to incorporate SEL in a classroom setting. Principal Psychologist and creator of Tallo’s Assessment Dr. Kraiger shares, “Through [these] assessments and career platforms, students discover their purpose which leads to better career choices. When students pursue their purpose, they persist. And through this persistence comes resilience, achievement, and the confidence to make better career choices moving forward.”

By integrating Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment into classrooms, students will get personalized results that will help them become more self-aware. This will teach them how to confidently communicate their personal interests, personality, values, and workplace preferences to others which will strengthen their self-perception, help them recognize their strengths, promote self-confidence, and encourage strong self-efficacy.

Finding — and being able to express — a sense of purpose and direction in life will lead to greater satisfaction in a student’s path from education to career. Using Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment in the classroom will allow educators to provide support as they help students come to terms with how their interests and realities may have changed in the last year. Additionally, educators will be able to better understand their students to inform instruction and create stronger relationships.  

Implementing Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment in the classroom will help students with their self-management skills, which is crucial as they navigate possible developmental delays, social anxiety, and new coping mechanisms. Students will be able to set specific goals on a personal or professional level and understand their strengths and areas for growth, which will result in increased self-motivation and a stronger connection to their sense of purpose.


What Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment shows students

Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment empowers students by emphasizing their strengths and potential rather than any weaknesses or limitations. Equipping them with an improved understanding of what makes them unique allows students to choose a major or career path with confidence. Tallo’s Assessment takes the following information about a student into consideration:

  1. Interests: These interests are what keep a student motivated and energized. Understanding and following them will bring enjoyment and satisfaction to their life.
    • Students will get a better understanding of how they rank in terms of being Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional
  2. Personality: A student’s personality traits are consistent over time and reflect how they typically think, feel, and act. Understanding them will help a student find a career path that values them for being who they are.
    • Students will get a better understanding of how they rank in terms of Openness to Experience, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, Emotional Stability, and Honesty/ Humility
  3. Values: A student’s values are what they find deeply important. Their career must include them in order for it to be fulfilling and purposeful.
    • Students will get a better understanding of their primary values in terms of Achievement, Independence, Relationships, Support, and Working Conditions
  4. Workplace Preferences: A student’s workplace preferences are values they’d like their ideal employer to emphasize. Understanding these preferences will help them find an organization that is a great fit.
    • Students will get a better understanding on what they value in a workplace in terms of Excellence, Guiding Principles, Collaboration, Innovation, Recognition, Performance, and Stability

Try it out in your classroom!

While traditional assessments take longer than 20 minutes to complete with over 100 items (ours only has 30!), Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment is a simple yet highly effective tool to guide conversations in the classroom. We know that life experiences can alter a student’s interests, which is why we allow the assessment to be retaken to accurately reflect who the student currently is. To learn more about Tallo’s Purpose and Meaning Career Fit Assessment and to set up your classroom account, please fill out the form below.

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