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Acceleration and Giftedness: Best Practices in Australia

Authors: Dr. Wilma Vialle
Conference: 1st World Giftedness Center International Conference

Keywords: Acceleration in Education, Gifted Education, Socio-emotional Concerns


Abstract

There Despite decades of research, policy support and examples of good practice, acceleration remains one of the most contentious strategies to meet the needs of gifted students. The key reason that many educators are dismissive of acceleration practices is that they associate it with multiple whole-year skipping that results in students graduating from high school years before their age cohort. Teachers cite socio-emotional concerns as the predominant problem of whole-year acceleration. Nevertheless, the research provides many examples of successful acceleration practices, which provide details of the factors that support implementation. In this presentation, I will provide case studies of various forms of acceleration that provide evidence of best practices in Australia. These include early entry to school, whole-year acceleration, subject acceleration, vertical timetabling, and concurrent enrolment. For each of the case studies I will outline the factors that led to the success of the acceleration practice and the barriers that needed to be overcome. The presentation concludes with an analysis of the recommendations that facilitate a sustainable program of acceleration practices to support giftedness and talent development.

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