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Social Emotional Assets and Resilience Scales

Kenneth W. Merrell, PhD

Assesses positive social-emotional attributes of children and adolescents
Paper and pencil, Online administration and scoring via PARiConnect
Age range:
5 years to 18 years
20 minutes
Qualification level:
A degree from an accredited 4-year college or university in psychology, counseling, speech-language pathology, or a closely related field plus satisfactory completion of coursework in test interpretation, psychometrics and measurement theory, educational statistics, or a closely related area; or license or certification from an agency that requires appropriate training and experience in the ethical and competent use of psychological tests. Close

A Strengths-Based Tool to Evaluate Social–Emotional Assets, Resiliencies, and Competencies in Children and Adolescents


Focusing on a child’s strengths, the SEARS can be used with children and adolescents who exhibit a variety of clinical problems or who are at high risk for developing such problems.

The SEARS comprises a cross-informant system for measuring social-emotional competencies such as friendship skills, empathy, interpersonal skills, social support, problem solving, emotional competence, social maturity, self-concept, self-management, social independence, cognitive strategies, and resilience. Higher item, scale, and total scores are always indicative of perceptions of higher levels of social-emotional competence.

Features and benefits

  • Includes separate assessment forms for children (ages 8 to 12 years or Grades 3 to 6) and for adolescents (ages 13 to 18 years or Grades 7 to 12), as well as teacher report forms and parent report forms. The forms may be used for any combination of student, parent, and teacher assessment.
  • All forms measure common constructs (e.g., self-regulation, responsibility, social competence, empathy), but also include items designed to capture the unique perspective of the rater. Items are phrased as desirable positive characteristics.

Short forms

Separate short forms (12 items each) are also available and take approximately 5 minutes to complete each. SEARS short forms best reflect the global construct of social resiliency measured by the full-length rating forms and require very little time to administer. They are practical for repeated assessment (i.e., progress monitoring) or class- or school-wide screening of students.

Available in Spanish

SEARS Parent Forms, including the Rating Booklet, Summary/Profile Form, and Short Form, have all been translated into U.S. Spanish. This product uses English norms only.