SEL is successfully embedded into the higher education learning setting to provide well-being and academic gains for students.
FREMONT, CA: In higher education, social-emotional learning is critical. Many students' higher education experiences include relocating, which exposes them to new social and academic conventions, practices, and experiences. Similarly, managing new social and interpersonal interactions and networks, whether face to face or online, as well as difficult subject matter and an expectation that students manage their learning, is required. External personal obligations and responsibilities are also balanced. It may appear that incorporating SEL into daily teaching practice is too difficult; however, many teachers do so without realizing it.
Focusing on proper planning with SEL
Teachers can teach better practices to the students with the right approach. SEL practices front and center and incorporates them from the outset, rather than attempting to retrofit them into lessons, activities, and student work. Include time to reinforce SEL principles, such as 10 seconds to stretch or take a deep breath, which can improve the lesson by increasing focus and participation.
A check-in, such as a virtual poll or priming questions about a recall, obstacles, and triumphs, helps students become more self-aware and provides a moment of calm and reflection before diving into learning. It also allows educators to understand where their students are and when to begin teaching.
Outline common objectives
Outlining clear goals and expectations at the beginning of the course and providing reminders throughout can foster a sense of stability, enhancing positive learning habits. Self-management and pro-social problem-solving could be emphasized as goals. Teaching can incorporate and promote these competencies, just as classroom culture must reflect social belonging and emotional safety.
Making student feedback a priority
Create learning environments in which students recognize the importance of challenge for deep understanding and feel secure to ask questions. Student voice and agency in education contribute to a healthy learning environment and a sense of self-management. Goals for learning and assessment should be clearly articulated and revisited regularly.