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Study Guide

Field 064: Gifted Education

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Sample Selected-Response Questions

Competency 0001
Foundations of Gifted Education and Professional Practice

1. Which conclusion is supported by the pioneering work of Leta Hollingworth in gifted education?

  1. Highly intelligent children are extremely vulnerable and need emotional education.
  2. Equitable identification should be based on student performance rather than IQ testing.
  3. Leadership and creativity as well as intellectual traits can be indicators of giftedness.
  4. Artistic and creative abilities are neglected in favor of intellectual abilities in gifted and talented programs.
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Correct Response: A. This item requires examinees to apply knowledge of the historical foundations of the field of gifted and talented education, including points of view and contributions of individuals from diverse backgrounds; and knowledge of key issues and trends (e.g., anti-intellectualism, stereotyping, equity, access, diversity, uses of technology, transition planning). Leta Hollingworth's varied research in the field of psychology was extensive and groundbreaking for its time. She wrote the first comprehensive text on the gifted, Gifted Children (1926), detailing educational practices and social/emotional development for nurturing giftedness. Many of the theories she advocated are standard now in the field, and she was one of the first to study children with IQs over 180. To Hollingworth, the emotional growth and development of a gifted child was as critical as the cognitive development. She observed that highly gifted children were often socially isolated, unpopular, and unmotivated in school. The psychosocial development of the highly gifted child continues to be a relevant topic.

Competency 0002
Development and Characteristics of Students Who Are Gifted and Talented

2. Ten-year-old Walter reads at the college level but will not sit still long enough to take a unit test in class. Walter invented a clothes-putting-away machine using bent wire hangers, old thread spools, and string, and he can intuitively grasp complex astrophysical concepts; however, he cannot explain his process when given a basic word problem in math. The first time he took an intelligence test, his score showed below-average ability. After he learned how to read, assessment revealed an IQ of 146. He has come to fear school because something always goes wrong, whether it be related to his erratic classroom behavior or his interactions with other students. The best provisional interpretation of the information provided by the teacher of students who are gifted and talented would be that

  1. Walter demonstrates indicators of being a math/science prodigy who has an anxiety disorder
  2. Walter shows signs of being twice-exceptional and needs further assessment for a possible attention disorder
  3. Walter is exceptional in both his asynchronistic behavior and giftedness, but he may have a depressive disorder
  4. Walter shows signs of sensory-processing issues and should be assessed for an autism spectrum disorder
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Correct Response: B. This item requires examinees to apply knowledge of the special populations of students who are gifted and talented, including students who are racially, culturally, linguistically, or socioeconomically diverse; students who have learning, physical, sensory, or behavioral disabilities; students who are exceptionally gifted; and students who are underachieving. "Twice-exceptional" is a term used to describe students who are gifted and talented and who also have a disability. Teachers of students who are gifted and talented should be aware that performance and/or behavior issues associated with a disability can often mask the student's giftedness. For example, Walter's erratic behavior and interactions are characteristics often associated with attention disorders. These characteristics may be interfering with Walter's ability to fully demonstrate his learning and achieve his potential.

Competency 0003
Assessment, Evaluation, and Differentiated Education Plans

3. Many of the students at Somerset Elementary School have limited English proficiency. The new gifted-education consultant for the district observes that none of the school's English language learners are currently included in the district's gifted program. The consultant wants to ensure that there is an equitable assessment process in place. Which strategy would likely be most effective in identifying high-ability students among this student population?

  1. instituting ongoing evaluation of potential giftedness based on students' classroom participation
  2. conducting focused IQ testing in multiple subject areas not requiring English language mastery
  3. using multiple criteria beyond academic achievement to identify students' strengths and potentials
  4. intensifying English language instruction to increase the reliability of standardized test results
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Correct Response: C. This item requires examinees to apply knowledge of nonbiased and equitable processes and procedures for identifying and placing students who are gifted and talented (e.g., collecting multiple types of assessment information, using locally developed norms or assessment tools in students' home languages, using nonverbal assessments, using culturally sensitive checklists, eliciting evidence of students' interests and potentials outside the classroom setting, and providing testing accommodations to students with disabilities). Some gifted education programs use the results of standardized tests as the primary criteria for identifying students for the program. For English language learners, standardized tests are less than reliable indicators of giftedness due to language differences. More reliable data about potential giftedness in English language learners can be obtained through a combination of several different assessments, such as student portfolios, dynamic performance-based assessments, and parent/guardian interviews. This approach helps mitigate the effects of language differences in the identification process.

Competency 0004
Learning Environments, Social Interactions, and Communication

4. Jorge is an exceptionally gifted tenth grader who has a passion for literature. Jorge has written a novel, which he self-published and distributed at local bookstores, and he has participated in community literary activities. He is certain that he wants to be a writer. For the teacher of students who are gifted and talented, what would be the most appropriate strategy to adopt when Jorge seeks support in taking his ambition seriously and moving beyond high school?

  1. helping Jorge develop and refine a writing portfolio on an ongoing basis so that he can seek out opportunities to submit his work and participate in workshops as well as in college programs
  2. encouraging Jorge to become a literacy volunteer in an underprivileged community because this will help him present a well-rounded portfolio that demonstrates his connection to others
  3. helping Jorge start a writing blog and interview professionals in the publishing business as a way to make important connections that may help him get literary representation
  4. encouraging Jorge in his writing while realistically acquainting him with the difficulties even the greatest writers encounter and helping him focus on a way to make a living while he writes
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Correct Response: A. This item requires examinees to apply knowledge of research-based and evidence-based strategies for fostering students' growth in personal competence and dispositions needed for exceptional academic and creative productivity (e.g., maintaining high expectations as evidenced in meaningful and rigorous activities; providing opportunities for self-exploration and development and pursuit of interests, strengths, and abilities; offering feedback that focuses on effort and perseverance). Professionals throughout many creative fields maintain portfolios showing samples of the quality and scope of their work as a way of presenting themselves for consideration for employment or sponsorship. Helping Jorge create and maintain a portfolio of his work will familiarize him with a process that can facilitate his advancement in his field. This approach puts Jorge in a position to seek and obtain opportunities to develop his craft in real-world contexts.

Competency 0005
Planning and Instruction

5. Ms. Pitt, a second-grade teacher, is exploring the history of the school's rural Hudson River community with her mixed-ability class. Angelina, a highly gifted seven-year-old in the class, has a passion for local history and has become an expert on the subject. Angelina's grasp of the material far exceeds that of her classmates, and she often asks questions considerably beyond the scope of planned lessons. While Ms. Pitt wants to include Angelina in thematic class discussions, she also wants to differentiate instruction to meet her intellectual needs. What would be the best advice a teacher of students who are gifted and talented could give to Ms. Pitt regarding how to proceed?

  1. "Provide opportunities for Angelina to apply her extensive historical knowledge by having her design enrichment materials and activities for classmates."
  2. "Help Angelina define a research question and a final product that will allow her to pursue her interests at an appropriately challenging level."
  3. "Give Angelina repeated opportunities to share her knowledge of history with others by having her act as your teaching assistant during certain lessons."
  4. "Allow Angelina to independently seek out the answers to any questions that occur to her and to report her findings to you at the end of each week."
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Correct Response: B. This item requires examinees to apply knowledge of research-based and evidence-based strategies for selecting, adapting, and differentiating curricula to incorporate advanced, conceptually challenging, in-depth, distinctive, and complex content; strategies for selecting curriculum resources and product options that respond to students' cultural, linguistic, and intellectual differences; and strategies for using metacognitive models to meet the needs of students who are gifted and talented. The best practice in the differentiation of instruction for gifted and talented students is to use the general curriculum as a foundation, but provide opportunities for students to select related topics to explore in-depth. The research question Angelina defines should address higher-order thinking skills such as analysis and evaluation. Providing Angelina with the opportunity to choose a topic and product of interest to her will enhance her engagement with the content.

Competency 0006
Gifted Services and Collaboration

6. Stella, a gifted 14-year-old, is the first member of her family to be fully bilingual in both English and her home language. Her family is extremely proud of her hard work and good grades in school, but they are uncomfortable with enrichment activities that take her out of her home community. Stella's loyalty to cultural expectations and her need to belong make her feel conflicted about the possible consequences of her exceptional academic abilities. Research indicates that Stella could best be helped to achieve a desirable balance through her teachers' implementation of which strategy?

  1. arranging for Stella to receive counseling from a trusted adult that directs her attention to the innumerable contributions of immigrants to all areas of U.S. history
  2. supporting Stella's strong sense of her own heritage and identity while facilitating her participation in the larger multicultural society
  3. arranging for Stella to participate in gifted programs designed specifically for students with ethnic and cultural identities similar to her own
  4. supporting Stella in considering diverse scenarios that include the possibility that her intelligence can be applied in many ways that do not involve higher education
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Correct Response: B. This item requires examinees to apply knowledge of effective strategies for responding to the concerns of students who are gifted and talented and their parents/guardians. Recent research indicates that gifted and talented students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds are more likely to thrive if they are provided with culturally responsive curriculum and instruction that enable the students to connect academic experiences with their lives outside school. Opportunities to interact with role models who share cultural or linguistic backgrounds with the students promote their cultural identity as they develop social and academic skills that prepare them to participate in a multicultural society.