This study evaluates the effects of student participation in two different educational programs/settings for the gifted, i.e., full time homogeneous classes vs mixed ability classes (with a part-time extension program), on a variety of affective outcome. Data on academic self-concept, test anxiety, achievement motivation, perceptions of giftedness, school attitudes, and satisfaction with school were gathered on a sample of 1020 Israeli gifted elementary school children in grades 4-6. Analyses of the data pointed to a less positive personal-social profile in students partaking in special full-time homogeneous classes, compared to their mainstreamed counterparts, as evidenced by lower evaluative anxiety, higher academic self-concept, and more positive labeling in the former setting. However, compared to their mainstreamed counterparts in mixed ability classes, students in special homogeneous classes for the gifted held more favorable attitudes towards various facets of the school/classroom environment (school atmosphere, level of instruction, teacher-student relations, teacher characteristics) and were also more satisfied with school in general when compared to their gifted counterparts partaking in mixed ability classes. The tradeoff between a more positive perception of the school environment and less effective personal-social adjustment for students in special gifted classes should be given due consideration by program planners and evaluators in any cost-benefit analysis of educational programs for gifted students.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business and International Management
- Social Psychology
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Strategy and Management
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health