College of Education > News and Publications > News: Oct. - Dec. 2010 > Psychologist to Speak on Social and Emotional Learning

Psychologist to Speak on Social and Emotional Learning

Internationally recognized psychologist Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, of the University of British Columbia, will speak December 10 in Chambers Building.

schonert-reichl_kim.jpgby Joe Savrock (November 2010)

Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, applied developmental psychologist and associate professor in educational and counseling psychology at the University of British Columbia, will present "Educating the Heart as Well as the Mind: Bringing Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) to Preservice Teacher Education" on Dec. 10. The presentation will take place at 9:30 a.m. in 221 Chambers Building on Penn State's University Park campus.

Schonert-Reichl will discuss her recent work developing and implementing an SEL cohort in the Faculty of Education at the University of British Columbia. She will provide a description of the program, the activities, and the processes that led to its development and will provide recommendations for future work in this area.

Schonert-Reichl is an award-winning teacher and has been internationally recognized for her collaborative work that translates research into practice. In 2009, the Confederation of University Faculty Association awarded her with its highest Distinguished Academic Award: the Paz Buttedahl Career Achievement Award. In 2006, Schonert-Reichl served on the organizing committee for the visit of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for the Vancouver Dialogues. She also chaired a dialogue between the Dalai Lama and leading educators, researchers, and policy makers on the themes of cultivating compassion and educating the heart.

For more than 20 years, Schonert-Reichl’s research has focused on the social, emotional, and moral development of children and adolescents with a particular emphasis on identifying the processes and mechanisms that foster children’s positive human traits, such as empathy, compassion, and optimism. Schonert-Reichl is currently investigating the effectiveness of classroom-based universal SEL promotion programs—including the Roots of Empathy and MindUp, a program that integrates social and emotional learning and mindfulness-based education. She is also conducting interdisciplinary research in collaboration with neuroscientists and psychobiologists, examining the relation of executive functions and biological processes to children’s social emotional development.

Schonert-Reichl serves on several national and international advisory boards, including the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) Research Advisory Group.

Schonert-Reichl received her M.A. from the University of Chicago and her Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. She was a National Institute of Mental Health Postdoctoral Fellow in the Clinical Research Training Program in Adolescence at the University of Chicago and Northwestern University Medical School in the Department of Psychiatry. Prior to her graduate work, she was both a middle school and high school teacher.

For more information on the presentation, contact Catherine Augustine at