Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Daniel C. Robinson


This research consisted of two studies. First, benchmark data were collected and summarized for Time One of a time-series/longitudinal study of highly gifted Iowa students. Subjects were 417 seventh and eighth graders who were named Duke Talent Identification Program finalists;Most students were living with their natural parents who were characterized by high levels of education and employment in professional and technical occupations. Most respondents anticipated career choices in the professional and technical categories. Nearly all subjects reported plans to attend college, with public universities being named most often. Students were evenly divided on preferences for in- or out-of-state schools;Participants expressed positive attitudes related to school, self-perceived ability, self-esteem, and giftedness. In terms of values, they attached greatest significance to becoming recognized authorities in a particular field and helping others in difficulty. Students suggested that educators could be supportive of gifted students by providing academic challenge, by offering encouragement, and by facilitating improved understanding of giftedness;Program evaluation of the first session of CY-TAG (Challenges for Youth - Talented and Gifted) comprised the second part of the research project. During its first session, this three-week summer residential program offered fast-pace courses to 72 students who were Duke TIP finalists. Program evaluation involved four constituent groups: students, their parents, their school principals, and CY-TAG faculty/staff;Strengths of the program included students' academic accomplishments, ability-peer interaction, and improved self-esteem. Recommendations focused on improving communication between staff and the constituent groups. Statistical tests revealed significant differences in terms of (a) satisfaction with various program aspects based on course enrollment, and (b) males who felt they received less attention from staff than did females. Results point to the need for greater staff awareness of the emotional and social needs and characteristics of gifted adolescents;Related research indicated that, in terms of learning style, CY-TAG participants differed significantly form a large pool of high school graduates. This finding supports the need for differentiated curriculum in gifted education.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

Copyright Owner

Linda Delbridge-Parker



Proquest ID


File Format


File Size

253 pages