Publication Date

Summer 2021

Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Janet Tassell (Director), Antonia Szymanski, and Julia Mittelberg

Degree Program

School of Teacher Education

Degree Type

Specialist in Education


Schools in Kentucky identify gifted students at a young age. Those students are labeled and should be provided with services based on their gifts throughout their educational career. It is the teacher’s duty to provide these services in their individual classrooms. This becomes progressively difficult as the student increases in grade level. Supporting teachers in their ability to recognize and manage the different levels in their classrooms does not always happen. The research question of this study focuses on how teachers meet the academic needs of gifted students in their classrooms in middle and secondary schools.

Participants included forty-four teachers in the middle and high school who participated in a survey and four teachers (two in the middle school and two in the high school) who participated in an interview. All participants were from the same district in Kentucky. Data collection consisted of the survey and the interviews. Once surveys were completed, the data was organized. The interviews were transcribed and coded. After organizing the interview data, four themes emerged: teachers provide opportunities to challenge gifted students, differentiating provides the education gifted students need, and obstacles that hinder the growth of the gifted student.


Education | Gifted Education