Acceleration without thresholds Paper Presentation
In the 21st century we need all the talent we have. We cannot afford underachievement due to poor education. There is an overwhelming amount of scientific support for acceleration as a positive intentional educational intervention for gifted children. The type of acceleration we focus on is skipping grades.
The project's main goal is providing resources for school counselors and teachers in order to encourage them to considerate acceleration as an option for gifted students at an early stage.
Research shows that accelerated children perform better than their not accelerated counterparts. Moreover, the dreaded negative social and emotional consequences do not occur ( Colangelo 2004; Hoogeveen, 2008).
There are indications that accelerating excellent pupils leads to better results than other measures such as compacting and enrichment of the curriculum.
However, both teachers and counselors hesitate in making decisions about skipping a grade, or acceleration in other ways. Probably they are far too reluctant.
There is evidence that, providing teachers and counselors with the right information, will help schools to design a good decision-making process.
In this presentation we will elaborate on our project regarding acceleration in Dutch schools. We will discuss an updated instrument for decision-making. This tool provides users with an analysis of the major factors to be considered in making the decision to accelerate or not. The instrument is based on the ‘Versnellingswenselijkheidslijst’ (Hoogeveen et al., 2004) and the The Iowa Acceleration Scale, 3rd Edition (Assouline, et al., 2009).
As a part of this project we also provide school counselors with an up-to-date information package, which they can use to organize a workshop for teachers and parents. The package explains the pros and cons of acceleration. In our presentation we give evidence of the development of both the instrument and the workshop.
Author(s): Jo Verlinden, (BCO Onderwijsadvies, The Netherlands), Lianne Hoogeveen, (Radboud University, Center for the Study of Giftedness, Nijmegen, The Netherlands), Bert Oostindie, (IJsselgroep Zwolle, The Netherlands), Nienke Bouwman, (IJsselgroep Zwolle, The Netherlands), Marloes Ottink, (Ijsselgroep, The Netherlands)