Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Degree

Master of Education

Program

Education

Supervisor(s)

Kathy Hibbert, Ph.D.

Abstract

The current constructivist interpretive narrative inquiry study considered the ways in which recently implemented enrichment programming on a system level was experienced by gifted secondary school learners and designated gifted teachers or contacts at the secondary schools. Through an in-depth exploration of stories of experiences that gifted students told about enrichment programming, this study offered significant insight into the unique learning needs and challenges of gifted adolescents in today’s secondary classrooms. Methods included an initial demographic questionnaire followed by a maximal variation sample of 12 participants for the second phase of the study with follow-up focus groups. Focus group interview data were video recorded, transcribed, and returned to participants to be member-checked for accuracy, omissions, deletions, or enhancements, and were subsequently analysed for patterns in experiences that offered insight into students’ and teachers’ perceptions of enrichment programming needs. Results of the study showcased alternative non-credit enrichment programming to be both appreciated and designed well, but the needs of gifted learners in the regular classroom are still not being met, as the remedial needs of struggling learners continue to take precedent in the regular classroom.


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