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Homework answers / question archive / Peer 1 Laura In describing what is meant by social awkwardness, it helps to define social competence

Peer 1 Laura In describing what is meant by social awkwardness, it helps to define social competence


Peer 1 Laura

In describing what is meant by social awkwardness, it helps to define social competence. Accordingly, social competence is the ability to process and participate in social interactions in an appropriate, effective way. Social competence continues to develop through consecutive, positive interactions with peers, teachers, coworkers, and family members (Juntunen & Schwartz, 2016). Likewise, the impact of social competence effects social, emotional, and cognitive development across the lifespan, and it establishes a positive trajectory for healthy relationships, interactions, and value-based outcomes as an adult (Juntunen & Schwartz, 2016). Conversely, social awkwardness comes from unexpectedly and unintentionally behaving in a manner that violates culturally accepted rules of social conduct. This can cause emotional challenges and interpersonal conflicts in every aspect of development (Moscovitch et al., 2012). As such, developing social competence is a central, preventive intervention that should begin in early childhood. Social adeptness directly influences foundational relationships, academia, and the overall quality of life. Accordingly, improving developmental pathways and healthy relational functioning in early childhood can significantly lower risk factors for mental illness and substance misuse (Juntunen & Schwartz, 2016). Further, social competency influences the success of academic achievement and technical competency. Often, the primary setting for social and emotional learning is in school. Studies report that in educational institutions that have constructive, classroom management, developmentally appropriate discipline practices, and positive, reciprocal relationships between peers and teachers, positively contribute to the school climate and promote greater, academic success. In this climate, students are actively engaged in learning, can safely practice social and emotional competencies, and develop healthy relational skills (Juntunen & Schwartz, 2016). Similarly, programs that foster positive interactions between adults and peers lead to opportunities to equip children with technical skills and leadership prospects. As such, there are a few ways schools can promote social competency. Several social and emotional learning (SEL) programs are available that can be successfully implemented in schools. The SEL programs focus on teaching kids of all ages to understand and manage their emotions, improve problem-solving skills, and increase communication proficiencies, strengthen empathy, and promote assertiveness. Programs such as 4Rs, PATHS, The Incredible Years, RULER, CASEL, and Work-based learning have proven successful in developing healthy, effective interpersonal relationships and academic success (Juntunen & Schwartz, 2016). These programs are effective because they incorporate a variety of cultures, socioeconomic conditions, and include parent engagement. Research states that interventions that incorporate multifaceted training and support are the most successful (Juntunen & Schwartz, 2016).


Juntunen, C.L. & Schwartz, J.P. (Eds). (2016). Counseling across the lifespan (2nd ed.). SAGE Publications, Inc.

Moscovitch, D. A., Rodebaugh, T. L., & Hesch, B. D. (2012). How awkward! Social anxiety and the perceived consequences of social blunders. Behavior Research and Therapy50(2), 142–149.

Peer 2 Elizabeth

“Socially Awkward” means a person doesn’t have social skills to understand social cues, read body language, they aren’t able to change their behavior when the environment and/or the people change, they might react inappropriate to a situation, and have a hard time communicating their feelings with others. Developing social competence is a HUGE form of prevention. Teaching social skills at a young age helps people understand the world around them and how to be a part of it. We are social beings. Everything we do is within a social context. We do things to make ourselves comfortable and to make others feel comfortable too. Relationships are vital to our survival. It is extremely important to teach social skills so that people can have a mentally healthy life.

Thinking of social competency and connecting it to academic standards, let’s think about a reading standard. When a student is reading a story and are expected to make an inference and prediction, they are supposed to be able to decide how a character is feeling, wanting, will do, how the story will end and more. To be able to answer those questions they need to have social skills. Academics are tied to social connection, group listening, and conversational skills and kids will be expected to use those skills throughout an academic day (Winner,2015). Social skills help students interpret and respond to academic lessons that require them to consider others’ thoughts, feelings, intentions, beliefs, motives, plans, etc. These skills are the foundation learning needed for Common Core Standards. It’s a process and as students become familiar with or recognize these concepts, changes happen. This helps students internalize these ideas and become socially and academically smarter. The ability to comprehend and explain information, spoken or written, rests on our social knowledge (Winner, 2015).

There are many ways schools can promote healthy and effective relationships in students. It comes from teachers and staff modeling the behavior themselves, having a student of the month character theme, posters in the hall, anti-bullying lessons, social emotional curriculum lessons starting at kindergarten, afterschool programs, full time counselor, book clubs, leadership team, and acknowledging national holidays to promote inclusion and love.


Winner, M. G. (2015, January 20). Socialthinking - Free Articles & Strategies. Socialthinking.Com.

Peer 3 Jamal

When I think of the term socially awkward, due to the nature of my current occupation, I automatically Think of Autism and the characteristics that make this diagnosis up. On a lighter note, socially awkward in my opinion is described as behaviors and characteristics of an individual or group of individuals who do not meet societal norms such as having numerous friends, keeping to themselves or overly displaying themselves, and even dressing a certain way. Socially awkward is one of those terms that is going to vey from environment to environment. What may be socially awkward in one situation in a particular environment may not be in another. Not only does developing social competence help individuals learn what behaviors are realized as inappropriate and/or socially awkward, it also acts as a method of prevention.

Developing social competence acts as a method of prevention because it makes the individual knowledgeable of the behaviors that are accepted within the society we live in today. Imagine if an individual was not socially competent. I could strongly guess that the individual would face a hard time growing up and unfortunately faced with situations that lead to mental health issues such as bullying and unhealthy relationships. I believe that social competency should be connected to academic achievement and technical competency in school programs because school is a place where you go to learn with hundreds of other adolescents your age that are going through some of the same developmental stages. I believe that school is a place that tests the social competence of children. With that it is very hard for a child to achieve academically if they are having troubles with thriving socially.

In order for schools to promote social competence to develop healthy and effective relationships in their students, schools could and do implement extracurricular activities such as sports, arts, and clubs. These programs are usually coached or sponsored by adults who guide the individuals in developing healthy and meaningful relationships. I know from experience of being involved with football all four years of high school, learning the actual sport was just the half of it. It was the building of relationships and dealing with adversity that made me into a better athlete and eventually a better individual within society.

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