Equity in Gifted/Talented (G/T) Education

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Twice-Exceptional Students and G/T Services

Characteristics Associated with Giftedness
& with Exceptionalities

There is no general profile of a twice-exceptional leaner. All twice-exceptional learners are gifted learners. However, these children’s giftedness interplays with one or more disability. Often twice-exceptional learners’ disabilities exist in combinations (e.g, learning disability combined with sensory integration dysfunction or autism combined with obsessive compulsive disorder). An understanding of the characteristics of twice-exceptional learners requires an exploration of giftedness and of the various disabilities.

The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) is the largest organization representing gifted learners, and this organization includes a position paper on twice-exceptionality. The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) includes information about exceptionalities defined by federal law.

The National Education Association (NEA), in collaboration with the National Association for Gifted Children, published an educator’s guide to twice exceptional learners titled The Twice-Exceptional Dilemma. This guidebook includes information about the characteristics and needs of twice-exceptional learners.

For a short description of the various exceptionalities, select the exceptionality from the list below.

Download Definitions & Characteristics Chart (PDF)