How we measure social and emotional skills

The Study will take a single snapshot of two cohorts of primary and secondary school students, at ages 10 and 15. It will assess students' social and emotional skills directly but also obtain information from their parents, teachers and school principals. This will allow us to understand the home and school contexts in which these skills develop.

Our formula for data quality



What are the types of assessment instruments?

The Survey's assessment instruments are reports of typical behaviours, thoughts and feelings.

Questions/items are in the form of simple statements such as “I like learning new things” (item assessing students’ creativity) and “I stay calm even in tense situations” (item assessing stress resistance). We use a 5-point Likert type agree/disagree response scale, with answers ranging from 1 – completely disagree to 5 – completely agree. All of the 17 assessment scales use positively and negatively worded items.

These methods are used the most frequently in social and emotional skills assessments. They provide a simple and efficient way to collect information from a large number of respondents, are cost efficient and simple to administer, tend to produce consistent results, and in many cases provide a remarkably high approximation of objective measures.


How do we collect information on students’ environment?

The survey collects information on students' and their parent's background characteristics, as well as on family, school, and community learning contexts through four contextual questionnaires developed for: students, parents, teachers and school principals.

The contextual questionnaires aim to capture the most relevant information that influences students’ social and emotional skills development in line with characteristics of this study that tend to be more responsive to policy interventions and adapting teaching methods.


Sample design


How is the Study administered ?

Administration method

• The survey is administrated to groups of students belonging to the same cohort in a controlled school setting. 

• A trained survey administrator delivers the survey, with school staff present. 

• Parents, teachers and principals complete their questionnaires individually.

Assessment mode

• The students fill out the questionnaires online through desktop or laptop devices.

• Parents, teachers and school principals also fill out questionnaires online, but in some participating cities/countries parents can choose a paper and pencil option in case of necessity or personal preference.

• All instruments are provided using a centrally managed online platform.