Social and Emotional Learning, Social and Emotional Competence, and Students’ Academic Outcomes: The Roles of Psychological Need Satisfaction, Adaptability, and Buoyancy

  • Ana L. Tarbetsky
  • Andrew J. MartinEmail author
  • Rebecca J. Collie


This chapter explores the possible relationships between students’ social and emotional competencies, motivation, engagement, and achievement in the context of an autonomy-supportive environment. At the core of students’ social and emotional learning are social and emotional competencies (SECs; e.g., social awareness, relationship skills). The present chapter broadens the view on SECs by considering novel constructs from the psycho-educational literature: basic psychological need satisfaction, adaptability, and academic buoyancy. Importantly, when SECs are effectively taught it leads to positive academic and non-academic outcomes. With the aim of promoting these positive outcomes, researchers have endeavored to better understand the climates that promote students’ SECs. Harnessing perspectives from social and emotional learning, self-determination theory, and the broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions, we propose an autonomy-supportive environment as one that can promote the SECs. We further contend that by supporting SECs through an autonomy-supportive environment, motivation, engagement, and achievement can be positively influenced. Finally, given the hypothesized relationships, this chapter also briefly reviews avenues for further development of students’ SECs, and more generally, their social and emotional learning.


Social and emotional competence Basic psychological needs Adaptability Academic buoyancy Autonomy support Student outcomes 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ana L. Tarbetsky
    • 1
  • Andrew J. Martin
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rebecca J. Collie
    • 1
  1. 1.School of EducationUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia

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