Social Emotional Health Survey-Secondary (SEHS-S): A Universal Screening Measure of Social-Emotional Strengths for Spanish-Speaking Adolescents

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019 Dec 7;16(24):4982. doi: 10.3390/ijerph16244982.


The Social Emotional Health Survey-Secondary (SEHS-S), which is a measure of core psychological assets based on a higher-order model of Covitality, is comprised of 36 items and four latent traits (with three measured subscales): belief in self (self-efficacy, self-awareness, and persistence), belief in others (school support, family coherence, and peer support), emotional competence (emotional regulation, behavioral self-control, and empathy), and engaged living (gratitude, zest, and optimism). Previous international studies have supported the psychometric properties of the SEHS-S. The present study extended this research by examining the psychometric properties of a Spanish-language adaptation with a sample of 1042 Spanish adolescents (Mage = 14.49, SD = 1.65.). Confirmatory factor analyses replicated the original factorial structure, with hierarchical omega between 0.66-0.93, with 0.94 for the total score. Factorial invariance across genders revealed small latent mean differences. A path model evaluated concurrent validity, which revealed a significant association between Covitality and bidimensional mental health (psychological distress and well-being). Specifically, correlational analyses showed a negative association with internalizing/externalizing symptoms, and positive associations with subjective well-being, health-related quality of life, and prosocial behaviors. This study provides an example of a culturally relevant adaptation of an international tool to measure student strengths, which is critical to planning school programming and policy.

Keywords: Covitality; adolescents; measurement; positive mental health; social and emotional health survey-secondary.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Emotions
  • Empathy
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Family Relations
  • Female
  • Hispanic Americans / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Language*
  • Male
  • Mental Health / ethnology*
  • Optimism
  • Peer Group
  • Psychometrics
  • Quality of Life
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Self Efficacy
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*