Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Education-Educational Leadership (M.Ed.)

Degree Program

Education Leadership & Counseling

First Advisor

Cathy Meyer-Looze

Academic Year



The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated already dire situations in schools regarding students' social and emotional well-being. A growing body of research within the last five years supports the implementation of social emotional learning (SEL) in schools to better the academic and emotional growth of students, especially in the wake of a global pandemic that disrupted their social lives. Research not only suggests that students need increased exposure to explicit SEL curricula, but that states need to do more to educate districts and teachers on the importance of SEL. Additionally, studies suggest that districts need to develop ways of assessing and tracking SEL competence growth in their student bodies. With a continued focus on deepening state and district understandings on the importance of SEL and continued research to unearth the best instructional methods for all students, I believe we can ensure all students come out of this global pandemic emotionally and academically stronger.