The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type


Degree Name

English: Teaching English as a Second Language: M.A.




College of Liberal Arts

First Advisor

Choonkyong Kim

Second Advisor

James Robinson

Third Advisor

Sharon Cogdill

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

SLIFE, Social, Emotional, Somali, Secondary, Social-emotional


This study examines the social-emotional skills of Somali students with limited or interrupted formal education (SLIFE). The participant group was Somali students, age eighteen to twenty-one, who self-identified as having limited or interrupted formal education. Participants reported their personal perceptions of their social-emotional skills using a Likert style questionnaire. Some participants were randomly selected to also participate in an interview during which participants provided clarifying examples which supplement the questionnaire data. The questionnaire and interview questions used the five main competencies of social-emotional learning as described by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) (2017) to measure the Somali SLIFEs’ social and emotional skills. The five main competencies used in this study are “self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making” (CASEL, 2017). The data reflects the students’ perceptions of their social-emotional skills in each of the five main competencies. This study finds that the Somali SLIFE participants self-report as highly competent in all of the five social-emotional skills. Using the questionnaire, they self-rated Relationship Skills as their most highly competent skill and Social Awareness as the competency in which they are least skilled. The interview data provided many examples which support the questionnaire data. However, the interview also provided examples which did not support the data found using the questionnaire. The interview also produced many other themes related to social emotional skills such as the importance of academic skills, the similarities between friends, and a sense of social separation.