Interventions Work But We Need More

Part of the Neuropsychology and Cognition book series (NPCO, volume 25)


Children who are both gifted and who have a learning disability (LD) have unique needs (Bees, 1998; Schubert, 1996; West, 1991) that place them at risk (Robinson, 1999) and that are usually overlooked by the public educational system (Winner, 1999; Brody & Mills, 1997). Although some of these students are provided services for either their gifts or their learning disabilities, very few of these students are eligible for services that both develop their areas of weakness and allow them to explore their areas of strength (Brody & Mills, 1997). This oversight may have significant consequences both indirectly and directly on the students’ opportunity to succeed in careers that utilize their areas of strength. Directly, the students will have little or no opportunity to develop their abilities. Indirectly, this lack of services may create a lessened sense of self-efficacy. Although very few programs that simultaneously address the diverse needs of students with gifts and LD have been available to students, the ones that have been developed are reporting great success (e.g., Weinfeld, Barnes-Robinson, Jeweler, Shevitz, 2002). However, these existing programs have been focused primarily on students who demonstrate one distinct profile of the gifted/LD learner—those students whose gifts fall in the domain of analytical ability or high IQ. As this field progresses, we present the case for a broader conception of giftedness to include students who may have gifts in domains such as creative or practical abilities that are often the impetus for success beyond school. We argue that children who demonstrate extraordinary abilities in such domains as leading their peers, or applying what they have learned in practical situations, or finding novel solutions to problems, will be some of our greatest resources for the future and will benefit from the support in developing these abilities. This chapter will begin with a review of the literature on existing intervention programs for students with gifts and learning disabilities and conclude with recommendations for programs that address a broader range of strengths including gifts in the creative and practical domains of ability.


Learning Disability Classroom Teacher Learn Disability Regular Classroom Gifted Student 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.PACE CenterYale UniversityUSA

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