Measures and References: Social Awareness & Relationship Skills

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Numerous measures exist to gain a full picture of a student's learning strengths and challenges. Following are examples of measures used to assess this Learner Factor. These measures should be administered and interpreted by experienced professionals.

Devereux Student Strengths Assessment (DESSA) (LeBuffe, Naglieri & Shapiro, 2012): Evaluates social-emotional competencies including Social Awareness & Relationship Skills for students in kindergarten to 8th grade. It also contains a screening tool, the DESSA-mini, to identify students who may require more extensive evaluation.


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Demaray, M. K., & Malecki, C. K. (2002). Critical levels of perceived social support associated with student adjustment. School Psychology Quarterly, 17(3), 213-241.

Demaray, M. K., & Malecki, C. K. (2003). Perceptions of the frequency and importance of social support by students classified as victims, bullies, and bully/victims in an urban middle school. School Psychology Review, 32(3), 471-490.

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LeBuffe, P. A., Naglieri, J. A., & Shapiro, V. B. (2012). The Devereux student strengths assessment-second step edition (DESSA-SSE). Lewisville, NC: Kaplan.

Malecki, C. K., & Demaray, M. K. (2003). What type of support do they need? Investigating student adjustment as related to emotional, informational, appraisal, and instrumental support. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(3), 231-252.

Malecki, C. K., Demaray, M. K., & Elliott, S. N. (2000). The Child and Adolescent Social Support Scale. DeKalb, IL: Northern Illinois University.

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Schonert-Reichl, K. A., Smith, V., Zaidman-Zait, A., & Hertzman, C. (2012). Promoting children's prosocial behaviors in school: Impact of the "Roots of Empathy" program on the social and emotional competence of school-aged children. School Mental Health, 4(1), 1-21.

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Taylor, R. D., Oberle, E., Durlak, J. A., & Weissberg, R. P. (2017). Promoting positive youth development through school‐based social and emotional learning interventions: A meta‐analysis of follow‐up effects. Child Development, 88(4), 1156-1171.

Wehby, J. H., Falk, K. B., Barton-Arwood, S., Lane, K. L., & Cooley, C. (2003). The impact of comprehensive reading instruction on the academic and social behavior of students with emotional and behavioral disorders. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 11(4), 225-238.