Instruction: Gifted and Talented

Master of Education

About This Program

Program Purpose

The Master of Education in Instruction: Gifted and Talented degree program is designed for educators interested in teaching and developing programs for gifted and talented students. Candidates study research-based practices to acquire the knowledge, skills, and experiences needed to enhance student learning and to ensure their effectiveness as teachers and leaders in the field of gifted and talented education. The program addresses research-based practices relating to curriculum development, promoting cognitive, social, and emotional development, and encouraging creativity, innovative and critical thinking.

Program Competencies

The standards and program competencies adopted for the Master of Education in Instruction: Gifted and Talented degree program are the National Gifted Education Standards issued by the National Association for Gifted Children, Council for Exceptional Children, and The Association for the Gifted (2008). The M.Ed. in Instruction: Gifted and Talented degree program is designed to enable candidates to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in the following program competency standards.


  1. Foundations
    Candidates make decisions based on a thorough understanding of the historical and philosophical foundations of gifted and talented education, including contemporary issues related to inclusion, diversity, and context.
  2. Development and Characteristics of Learners
    Candidates create learning environments that support the developmental trajectories and idiosyncratic ways of learning needed by individuals of gifts and talents.
  3. Individual Learning Differences
    Candidates critically assess the effects that gifts and talents can have on an individual's learning in school and throughout life. Moreover, educators research ways in which language, culture, and family background interact and affect academic, social behaviors, attitude, values and interest.
  4. Instructional Strategies
    Candidates use effective pedagogical approaches, instructional, and management strategies for supporting the learning needs of individuals with gifts and talents in various domains.
  5. Learning Environments and Social Interactions
    Candidates create learning environments that encourage positive interpersonal relationships and social interactions, foster cultural understanding, and emotional well-being that will prepare individuals with gifts and talents to live in a culturally diverse world independently and productively.
  6. Language and Communication
    Candidates use a wide range of strategies, information and communication technology, and assistive technology to address the diverse needs of all individuals with gifts and talents.
  7. Instructional Planning
    Candidates design, implement, evaluate, and revise curriculum that provides differentiated instructional opportunities directly related to the unique learning needs of individuals with gifts and talents, facilitating these actions in a collaborative context.
  8. Assessment
    Candidates use appropriate and multiple types of assessment information for identification and learning progress decisions.
  9. Professional and Ethical Practice
    Candidates engage in a professional, ethical, and reflective practices while being committed to participating in professional development opportunities.
  10. Collaboration
    Candidates work collaboratively with families, school personnel, and related service providers to communicate, advocate, and promote programs that benefit individuals with gifts and talents.

Outcomes Assessment

Multiple assessments are used to determine candidate growth toward achievement of the knowledge and skills described in the Master of Education in Instruction: Gifted and Talented degree program competencies and the college-wide graduation competencies. Performance-based assessments are used to evaluate fieldwork, projects, assignments, and research papers. Goals, learning outcomes and activities, external assignments, and assessment strategies are linked directly to program and graduation competencies as stated on each course syllabus. Other assessment strategies may include observations of performance-based projects in authentic settings and mentoring sessions. A standards-based presentation portfolio completed during the program will show the candidate’s level of expertise in acquiring the knowledge, skills, and dispositions described by the National Association for Gifted Education Standards.

This information applies to students who enter this degree program during the 2014-2015 Academic Year. If you entered this degree program before the Fall 2014 semester, please refer to the academic catalog for the year you began your degree program.