Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


School of Education

First Advisor

Dane Joseph, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Marc Shelton, Ed.D.


This Improvement Science Dissertation in Practice (ISDiP) evaluates the implementation of social and emotional learning (SEL) lessons to address SEL challenges for 9th grade students attending WC High School (pseudonym). WC High School is one of four comprehensive high schools in Eugene, Oregon. A networked improvement community (NIC) composed of district leadership, school administrators, and teachers used the “collaborative for academic, social, and emotional learning” (CASEL) framework to develop and provide lessons supporting SEL throughout the academic year. The NIC created these lessons to give students opportunities to improve self-management, growth mindset, self-efficacy, and social awareness by implementing periodic tasks that met state standards and criteria while providing academic instruction by the humanities instructors. Student acquisition of SEL skills was measured via the mindset, essential skills, and habits (MESH) survey, used in the humanities classes twice in the first trimester of the 2022–2023 academic year, to determine how often students used the SEL skills provided in the humanities classes. Through various questions, the MESH survey identified these SEL skills within four key competencies: self-management, self-efficacy, growth mindset, and social awareness.

Positive growth occurred within three competencies (self-management, self-efficacy, and growth mindset) between the first and second MESH surveys, indicating that students were learning and applying SEL skills provided in the humanities classes. Even with a general decline in social awareness scores, this ISDiP justifies continuing the humanities program by measuring student development and further practice of SEL skills each semester. It also supports implementing the program across all grade levels.