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Social and emotional learning (SEL) is a dominant orthodoxy in education systems around the world. This important new book provides the first in-depth, authoritative and balanced examination of the critical issues pervading the field. Each substantive aspect of SEL is examined through a critical lens, thanks to an extensive and thorough review of the international research literature. The book investigates key topics such as: - definitions and conceptualization - origins and influences - international policy and practice - assessment and monitoring - implementation - outcomes The book highlights key strengths and significant flaws in SEL theory and research, and sets the agenda for the next generation of inquiry in the field. It will be valuable for researchers, policy-makers, students, teachers, and anyone interested in the role played by schools in promoting children's social and emotional wellbeing.