An Exploratory Study of the Effectiveness of the Staff Development Model and the Research-Based Assessment Plan in Improving the Identification of Gifted Economically Disadvantaged Students

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University of Connecticut, National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented

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A brief narrative description of the journal article, document, or resource. This monograph discusses a project involving 246 teachers that investigated a Staff Development Model (SDM) and a Research-Based Assessment Plan (RAP) for their potential to improve the identification and education of gifted students from economically disadvantaged families, some of whom have limited proficiency in the English language. The concept of giftedness as a psychological construct defined by a basic set of traits, aptitudes, and behaviors (TABs) formed the basis of the two models. Overall, the models were perceived as an effective way to: (1) improve teachers' ability in observing giftedness in target population student groups; and (2) facilitate the collection and use of information derived from multiple sources when making decisions for program placement and services. The TABs associated with the giftedness construct appeared to provide a feasible way to train teachers to recognize exceptional ability in target population student groups. Secondly, the SDM and the RAP process appeared to affirm the importance of involving teachers and other staff in the entire process of identifying gifted target students. Finally, feedback on the RAP suggested that it could be a systematically viable way to consider the interrelationships of information from multiple sources when making gifted program placement decisions. (Contains 39 references.) (Author/CR)