Gifted and Talented Aboriginal Students in Australia

  • Susanne GarvisEmail author
  • Sally Windsor
  • Donna Pendergast
Living reference work entry
Part of the Springer International Handbooks of Education book series (SIHE)


In Australia, gifted and talented Aboriginal students have been identified as the most educationally disadvantaged group in the education system. Suitable provision and the accommodation for inclusion of gifted Aboriginal students are needed across all states and territories in Australia, with appropriate identification and gifted programs. In this chapter we provide an overview of Australian research and critique policies and practices from states and territories across Australia. We start with the assumption that giftedness in aboriginal people ‘is realized and must be supported in the contexts of collective action in which it emerges’ (Christie, High Abil Stud 23:39–41, 2012). These contexts integrate critical thinking and cultural values in decision-making and are based on a whole-system view of knowledge. We also acknowledge the importance of working with Aboriginal communities in local contexts to create understandings of knowledge specific to cultures. We conclude that authorities and government agencies work to ensure that the practices around Australian schooling enhance rather than undermine the always ongoing traditional collective practices of remaking strong Aboriginal culture. This starts with a long overdue and fundamental change to the provision of education for gifted and talented Aboriginal students. In our final thoughts, we suggest five steps forward for authorities and agencies to support gifted and talented Aboriginal students.


Gifted and talented Aboriginal people Critical thinking Cultural values Local contexts Provision 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susanne Garvis
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sally Windsor
    • 1
  • Donna Pendergast
    • 2
  1. 1.University of GothenburgGothenburgSweden
  2. 2.Griffith UniversityBrisbaneAustralia

Section editors and affiliations

  • María Leonor Conejeros-Solar
    • 1
  • Sheyla Blumen
    • 2
  1. 1.Pontificia Universidad Católica de ValparaísoViña del MarChile
  2. 2.Dept. of PsychologyPontificia Universidad Católica del PerúLimaPerú

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