Recently Published Articles & Research
MINDSETS, ESSENTIAL SKILLS, & HABITS (MESH) HIGHLIGHTS
Use of Data from 21st Century Skills Assessments: Issues and Key Principles
Center for Universal Education at Brookings – Alvin Vista, Helyn Kim, and Esther Care, October 2018
What’s Next for the Social, Emotional, and Academic Movement?
Education Week – Ross Wiener, October 31, 2018
MESH IN PRACTICE
Motivation and Engagement in Student Assignments
The Education Trust – Tanji Reed Marshall and Joan Dabrowski, November 1, 2018
MESH IN EDUCATION POLICY
States Set Sights on Growth of Low-Performing Students
National Association of State Boards of Education – Joseph Hedger, November 2018
Here’s How Teachers Think SEL Can Truly Help Students
eSchool News – Laura Ascione, October 31, 2018
MESH IN RESEARCH & MEASUREMENT
A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Effects of Early Life Non-Cognitive Skills on Academic, Psychosocial, Cognitive and Health Outcomes
Nature Human Behavior – Lisa G. Smithers, Alyssa C. P. Sawyer, Catherine R. Chittleborough, Neil M. Davies, George Davey Smith & John W. Lynch, November 5, 2018
Abstract: Success in school and the labour market relies on more than high intelligence. Associations between ‘non-cognitive’ skills in childhood, such as attention, self-regulation and perseverance, and later outcomes have been widely investigated. In a systematic review of this literature, we screened 9,553 publications, reviewed 554 eligible publications and interpreted results from 222 better-quality publications. Better-quality publications comprised randomized experimental and quasi-experimental intervention studies (EQIs) and observational studies that made reasonable attempts to control confounding. For academic achievement outcomes, there were 26 EQI publications but only 14 were available for meta-analysis, with effects ranging from 0.16 to 0.37 s.d. However, within subdomains, effects were heterogeneous. The 95% prediction interval for literacy was consistent with negative, null and positive effects (−0.13 to 0.79). Similarly, heterogeneous findings were observed for psychosocial, cognitive and language, and health outcomes. Funnel plots of EQIs and observational studies showed asymmetric distributions and potential for small study bias. There is some evidence that non-cognitive skills associate with improved outcomes. However, there is potential for small study and publication bias that may overestimate true effects, and the heterogeneity of effect estimates spanned negative, null and positive effects. The quality of evidence from EQIs underpinning this field is lower than optimal and more than one-third of observational studies made little or no attempt to control confounding. Interventions designed to develop children’s non-cognitive skills could potentially improve outcomes. The interdisciplinary researchers interested in these skills should take a more strategic and rigorous approach to determine which interventions are most effective.
Is the Child Really What’s Being Rated? Sources of Variance in Teacher Ratings of Socioemotional Skills
Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment – Xiaozhu An, Timothy W. Curby, and Laura L. Brock, October 29, 2018
Abstract: This study examined three potential sources of variance in teacher ratings of the socioemotional skills of children: occasion, child, and teacher. The ratings were prepared using the Devereux Student Strengths Assessment. In total, 344 children were assessed in both the fall and spring of kindergarten and first grade, providing a total of 1,067 ratings across 106 teachers. We employed cross-classified random effects models to account for multiple occasions of measurement that were nested within both children and teachers, which allowed us to determine the amounts of variance attributable to occasion, children, and teachers. Overall, occasion accounted for the greatest proportion of variance (43%-50%) across a variety of socioemotional subscales, followed by child (36%-46%), and teacher (11%-16%). Findings suggest that caution is warranted when using these scales for high-stake decisions.