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Equity Gaps in Talent Development: Causes, Effects, and Recommendations

Authors: Dr. Ching-Chih Kuo, Drs. Albert Ziegler
Conference: 1st World Giftedness Center International Conference

Keywords: Excellence Gaps, Achievement Gaps, Talent Development and Gifted Education


Abstract

Excellence gaps are defined as “the differences in rates of advanced achievement between various groups of students” and are supposed to “exist in all areas of student activity” (Clark & Roberts, 2019, p. 1). ey share at least three common features: they 1) point to disparities between groups that 2) violate our notions of equity and therefore 3) require socio-cultural, economic, and pedagogical efforts to close them. Each of these gaps has its own history, leads to individual personal experiences of those affected, and requires specific measures to close them. However, the question arises as to whether these are conceptually completely different phenomena or whether there are also gap commonalities that make it possible to develop more general talent development and gifted education strategies and measures. Three gaps play a special role. We argue from a talent development and gifted education perspective that, taken together, they can provide a conceptual key to better understanding of and bridging between the other gaps: • Achievement gaps refer to the output of (educational) processes, e.g., participation rates, learning outcomes, achievements, rewards. • Opportunity gaps refer to the input of (educational) processes, i.e., resources, opportunities, access to infrastructures, learning opportunities. • Learning gaps refer to individual capacities to take advantage of opportunities, resources, access to infrastructures and learning opportunities These three gaps will be elaborated and illustrated in our contribution.

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