Semester

Spring

Date of Graduation

2019

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Type

MA

College

College of Education and Human Services

Department

Not Listed

Committee Chair

Karen Rambo-Hernandez

Committee Member

Melissa Patchan

Committee Member

Carla Brigandi

Abstract

Who are the gifted? This question has plagued the field since its inception. Historically, gifted education has been predicated on the values of the Caucasian, upper- to middle-class majority. As a result, underrepresentation of students from economically disadvantaged and culturally diverse families have been well documented in the literature and continues to this day. Some scholars have suggested the use of expanded definitions of giftedness to increase participation of students from underrepresented segments of the population. This study used regression and hierarchical linear models to predict the proportion of students identified across various thresholds focusing on how definitions impacted differential rates of gifted identification across schools with different proportions of students who are eligible for free and reduced lunches (FRL) and school locale. Results indicated that when school building norming procedures were used with cut scores associated with the top 5%, 10%, or 20% of students that school proportion of FRL students was either unrelated or positively related to proportion of identified students. Local school-based norming also led to more equal distributions of identified gifted students across schools serving diverse populations.

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