Spring 2020 - EDUC 428W D100

Nature and Nurture of Gifted Students (4)

Class Number: 2933

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    9:30 AM – 3:30 PM
    SRYC 3040, Surrey

    9:30 AM – 3:20 PM
    SRYC 3040, Surrey

    9:30 AM – 3:20 PM
    SRYC 3040, Surrey

    9:30 AM – 3:20 PM
    SRYC 3040, Surrey

  • Prerequisites:

    EDUC 401/2 or EDUC 403. Students must successfully complete an SFU Criminal Records Check.



Conceptions and misconceptions related to the nature and education of individuals with extraordinary abilities will be introduced. Implications for teaching and learning will be examined. The nature and feasibility of curriculum differentiation, flexible pacing, and other educational options for these students will be critiqued. Grading will be on a pass/fail basis. Writing.


Who is gifted? In what ways are “gifted” students, or those with high potential, similar to and different from their peers?  How can you support their learning and their peers’ too? These questions and more will be addressed in the readings, discussions, and assignments in this course.

We will explore definitions, controversies, research and practices surrounding the identification, development and education of highly able learners. The major themes will be understanding these students as well as developing curriculum with and for them while they are learning in inclusive, mixed ability classrooms or special programs.

The course will involve a blend of face-to-face, online, self-directed and collaborative learning experiences. Written responses to assigned readings and other activities will be required for each class. These assignments will become the basis for in-class activities with classmates.

The dates of all classes are shown in the Requirements section below.  Full attendance is required.


Students in this course will increase their:
  ·    Understanding of past and current definitions and conceptions of “giftedness”;
  ·    Ability to recognize highly able, gifted and creative students;
  ·    Ability to find, modify, and design learning experiences appropriate for highly able, gifted and creative learners;
  ·    Understanding of the instruments and processes used to identify/select students for differentiated programs;
  ·    Understanding of issues related to the education of students with extraordinary abilities.


  • • Weekly assignments including an interview with a “gifted” individual, responses to readings, and online discussions.
  • • A Case Study of a gifted or high ability learner that includes differentiated learning activities
  • • An Inquiry Project addressing a question of personal interest that focuses on the nature or nurture of gifted/high ability learners
  • • A Growth Portfolio which provides evidence of your learning


This course is graded on a Pass-Fail basis.  To pass the course students must attend all four of the full-day class meetings in their entirety and pass all assignments.



To pass the course, students must attend all four of the full-day class meetings in their entirety (9:30am - 3:20pm).

Classes meet on the following dates:
Saturday, January 11, 2020
Saturday, February 1, 2020
Saturday, March 7, 2020
Saturday, April 4, 2020



Chapters and articles will be selected to address the course content and based on the needs and interests of students enrolled in the course. Links to them will be posted on the course website.

Chapters from the Tool Kit for High End Curriculum Differentiation (Kanevsky, L., 2017; free download will be provided)

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html