Summer 2021 - EDUC 428W E100

Nature and Nurture of Gifted Students (4)

Class Number: 2386

Delivery Method: Remote


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 5:30 PM – 9:20 PM

  • 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.


This course will be offered remotely with synchronous and asynchronous elements.  Students are expected to be online and available during scheduled class time.

In Educ 428 you will enhance your knowledge, skill and confidence related to understanding and nurturing the strengths and needs of diverse high ability learners and their classmates by using a variety of inclusive methods for exploring and extending their potentials.  Your learning will address your understanding of the nature of students’ gifts and talents, ways to nurture those strengths, and your beliefs and attitudes about them.


By the end of this course you will…

  • understand the connection between the nature of an individual’s “gifts” (strengths) and the types of experiences they will need to fully develop their potential(s).
  • understand diverse conceptions of "giftedness," talent, strengths, and individuals considered gifted.
  • know how to recognize and assess behaviours associated with high potential and understand neurological, cognitive, emotional and other sources that contribute to them.

By the end of this course you will…

  • be able to find, modify, and create inclusive learning experiences aligned with the strengths and needs of diverse high ability learners as well as those of their peers.
  • be aware of options for grouping learners and adjusting the pace of their education.
  • be aware of issues, policies, and practices in gifted education and their implications.
  • Be aware of a variety of assessment options appropriate for monitoring and evaluating high ability learners’ growth.

Beliefs and attitudes: 
By the end of this course you will…

  • be able to describe your beliefs regarding the nature of "gifts", gifted individuals, and their development.
  • develop confidence in your ability to plan with and for high ability learners.



This course is graded on a Pass-Fail basis.  To pass the course you’ll need to attend and participate fully in the online class meetings, participate in all activities in and between classes, and pass all assignments.


  • Weekly assignments (an interview with a “gifted” individual, responses to readings, online discussions, etc.)
  • A Case Study of a gifted or high ability learner in which you’ll develop differentiated learning activities
  • An Inquiry Project addressing a question of interest to you that is focused on the nature and/or nurture of gifted/high ability learners
  • Reflection on your Time Capsule


The course will involve a variety of synchronous and asynchronous online, self-directed, and collaborative learning experiences.  Synchronous sessions will be on Zoom.  Asynchronous activities and course materials will be accessible on Canvas.  Written assignments and online written discussions based on assigned readings will be required between each online class meeting.  This writing will become the basis for in-class activities. 

Collaboration in and between Zoom sessions will play a central role in many assignments and activities.  The interdependence of your learning with that of other students’ means the depth, sensitivity and timing of your contributions will influence the learning of all class members.



For this course, a computer or tablet and stable internet connection are required to participate in our Zoom sessions and between-class meetings with your camera on. They will also be necessary to access recorded lectures, course materials, participate in required course activities, and communicate with classmates and the instructor throughout the semester.


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 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.


Teaching at SFU in summer 2021 will be conducted primarily through remote methods, but we will continue to have in-person experiential activities for a selection of courses.  Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning ( or 778-782-3112).