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Profiles of the gifted and talented

Gifted and Twice-Exceptional

This article by George Betts and Maureen Neihart offers a succinct chart that profiles 6 different “types” of gifted individuals:

  • Successful
  • Challenging
  • Underground
  • Dropouts
  • Double-labeled
  • Autonomous

It includes their feelings, attitudes, behaviors, needs, adults & peers perceptions, identification, home and school support.

Author: Betts, G., Neihart M.
Publications: Gifted Child Quarterly
Publisher: National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC)
Year: 1988


    After several years of observations, interviews, and reviews of literature, the authors have developed six profiles of gifted and talented children and youth. These profiles help educators and parents to look closely at the feelings, behaviors, and needs of the gifted and talented. Also, tips on identification of each profile are included as well as information on facilitating the gifted and talented in the school and home.

Gifted children are usually discussed as an undifferentiated group. When they are differentiated, it tends to be on the basis of differences in intellectual abilities, talents, or interests rather than from a total or “gestalt” point of view in terms of behavior, feelings, and needs. For example, creatively gifted, intellectually gifted, learning disabled gifted, and artistically gifted are among the different categories that have been reported. The purpose of this article is to describe a theoretical model to profile the gifted and talented that differentiates gifted individuals on the basis of behavior, feelings, and needs. The matrix describes and compares the needs, feelings and behaviors of six different profiles of gifted children. This model serves to increase awareness among educators and parents of differences among gifted children and provides guidelines for identifying gifted children. It can also be used to develop appropriate educational goals for the gifted. These types are offered as a generalization to facilitate the task of identifying and guiding gifted children in all aspects of development. They are not intended to describe anyone child completely.

Personality is the result of life experiences and genetic makeup. All gifted children are not affected by their special abilities in the same way. Gifted children interact with and are influenced by their families, their education, their relationships, and their personal development. Experience with gifted children in a variety of settings has served to increase awareness that the gifted cannot be seen as one group (Strang, 1962).

Little has been done, however, to distinguish among groups of gifted children. Roeper (1982) proposed five types of gifted children based strictly on the approaches gifted children use to cope with their emotions. She identified the perfectionist, the child/adult, the winner of the competition, the self-critic, and the well-integrated child. She focused on the development of coping styles and the ways in which gifted children experience and express feelings.

Few studies focus on a holistic perspective of the gifted child. Most address one aspect of development or an area of achievement or interest. (Colangelo & Parker, 1981; Delisle, J.R., 1982; Gregory & Stevens-Long, 1986; Kaiser, Berndt, & Stanley, 1987; Schwolinski & Reynolds, 1985). The development of the whole child must be addressed, taking into account the interaction of emotional, social, cognitive, and physical factors. It is essential to remember that “A child is a total entity; a combination of many characteristics. Emotions cannot be treated separately from intellectual awareness or physical development; all intertwine and influence each other” (Roeper, 1982, p. 21). Giftedness should not be defined by separate categories; every aspect of personality and development influences and interacts with every other aspect. Giftedness should be examined as a construct that impacts on personality.

Profiles of the Gifted and Talented

The following presentation of six different profiles of gifted and talented students can provide information for educators and parents about the behavior, feelings, and needs of gifted and talented children and youth. It is important to remember that this is a theoretical concept that can provide insights for facilitating the growth of the gifted and talented, not a diagnostic classification model (see Figure 1).

Putting The Research To Use

It is essential that educators and parents understand the cognitive, emotional, and social needs of the gifted and talented. “Profiles of the gifted and talented” provides a framework for a better understanding of these students by looking closely at their feelings, behavior, and needs. Additional information is provided concerning adult and peer perceptions, identification, and home and school interactions. Parents and educators use the profiles to gain a deeper awareness of the gifted and talented. They are also able to use the information for inservice and courses concerning the nature and needs of the gifted and talented. Furthermore, educators can present the information directly to students in order to help them develop more insight into their own needs and behavior. “Profiles of the gifted and talented” is a starting point for those who want to develop a greater awareness and insight into these students. The application of the approach will provide deeper and greater understanding of our gifted and talented.

Additionally, children and youth should not be defined by anyone of the following categories. The behavior, feelings, and needs of gifted and talented children change frequently when they are young, but as years pass there will be fewer abrupt changes and they may settle into one or two profile areas. This approach provides a new understanding of the gifted and talented and new opportunities for developing techniques and strategies for facilitating the cognitive, emotional and social growth of these children.

Type I – The Successful

Perhaps as many as 90% of identified gifted students in school programs are Type I’s. Children who demonstrate the behavior, feelings, and needs classified as Type I’s have learned the system. They have listened closely to their parents and teachers. After discovering what “sells” at home and at school, they begin to display appropriate behavior. They learn well and are able to score high on achievement tests and tests of intelligence. As a result, they are usually identified for placement in programs for the gifted. Rarely do they exhibit behavior problems because they are eager for approval from teachers, parents and other adults.

These are the children many believe will “make it on their own.” However, Type I’s often become bored with school and learn to use the system in order to get by with as little effort as possible. Rather than pursue their own interests and goals in school, they tend to go through the motions of schooling, seeking structure and direction from instructors. They are dependent upon parents and teachers. They fail to learn needed skills and attitudes for autonomy, but they do achieve. Overall, these children may appear to have positive self-concepts because they have been affirmed for their achievements. They are liked by peers and are included in social groups. They are dependent on the system but are not aware that they have deficiencies because of the reinforcement they receive from adults who are pleased with them and their achievement. However, Goertzel and Goertzel (1962) concluded that the brightest children in the classroom may become competent but unimaginative adults who do not fully develop their gifts and talents. It seems that these children have lost both their creativity and autonomy.

Gifted young adults who may underachieve in college and later adulthood come from this group. They do not possess the necessary skills, concepts, and attitudes necessary for life-long learning. They are well adjusted to society but are not well prepared for the ever-changing challenges of life.

Type II – The Challenging

Type II’s are the divergently gifted. Many school systems fail to identify Type II gifted children for programs unless the programs have been in place at least five years and substantial inservicing has been done with teachers. Type II’s typically possess a high degree of creativity and may appear to be obstinate, tactless, or sarcastic. They often question authority and may challenge the teacher in front of the class. They do not conform to the system, and they have not learned to use it to their advantage. They receive little recognition and few rewards or honors. Their interactions at school and at home often involve conflict.

These children feel frustrated because the school system has not affirmed their talents and abilities. They are struggling with their self-esteem. They may or may not feel included in the social group. Some Type II’s also challenge their peers, and therefore are often not included or welcomed in activities or group projects; on the other hand, some Type II’s have a sense of humor and creativity that is very appealing to peers. Nevertheless their spontaneity may be disruptive in the classroom. In spite of their creativity, Type II’s often possess negative self-concepts.

Type II’s may be “at risk” as eventual dropouts for drug addiction or delinquent behavior if appropriate interventions are not made by junior high. Parents of gifted high school students who drop out of school (Type IV) frequently note that their children exhibited Type II behaviors in upper elementary school or junior high. Although this relationship has not been validated empirically, it carries significant implications that merit serious consideration.

Type III – The Underground

The Type III gifted child is known as “the underground gifted.” Generally, these are middle school females although males may also want to hide their giftedness. If a gifted boy goes underground, it tends to happen later, in high school, and typically in response to the pressure to participate in athletics.

In general, Type III’s are gifted girls whose belonging needs rise dramatically in middle school (Kerr, 1985). They begin to deny their talent in order to feel more included with a non-gifted peer group. Students who are highly motivated and intensely interested in academic or creative pursuits may undergo an apparently sudden radical transformation, losing all interest in previous passions. Type III’s frequently feel insecure and anxious. Their changing needs are often in conflict with the expectations of teachers and parents. All too often, adults react to them in ways that only increase their resistance and denial. There is a tendency to push these children, to insist that they continue with their educational program no matter how they feel. Type Ill’s often seem to benefit from being accepted as they are at the time.

Although Type III’s should not be permitted to abandon all projects or advanced classes, alternatives should be explored for meeting their academic needs while they are undergoing this transition. Challenging resistant adolescents may alienate them from those who can help meet their needs and long-term goals.

Type IV – The Dropouts

Type IV gifted students are angry. They are angry with adults and with themselves because the system has not met their needs for many years and they feel rejected. They may express this anger by acting depressed and withdrawn or by acting out and responding defensively. Frequently, Type IV’s have interests that lie outside the realm of the regular school curriculum and they fail to receive support and affirmation for their talent and interest in these unusual areas. School seems irrelevant and perhaps hostile to them. For the most part, Type IV’s are high school students, although occasionally there may be an elementary student who attends school sporadically or only on certain days and has in essence “dropped out” emotionally and mentally if not physically.

Type IV students are frequently gifted children who were identified very late, perhaps not until high school. They are bitter and resentful as a result of feeling rejected and neglected. Their self-esteem is very low, and they require a close working relationship with an adult they can trust. Traditional programming is no longer appropriate for Type IV’s. Family counseling is strongly recommended, and the Type IV youth should also be given individual counseling. Diagnostic testing is also necessary to identify possible areas for remediation.

Type V – The Double-Labeled

Type V refers to gifted children who are physically or emotionally handicapped in some way, or who have learning disabilities. The vast majority of gifted programs do not identify these children, nor do they offer differentiated programming that addresses and integrates their special needs. Fortunately, research on the effective identification of these children has been promising, and suggestions do exist for ways to provide programming alternatives (Daniels, 1983; Fox, Brody, & Tobin, 1983; Gunderson, Maesch, & Rees, 1988; Maker, 1977; and Whitmore & Maker, 1985).

Type V students often do not exhibit behaviors that schools look for in the gifted. They may have sloppy handwriting or disruptive behaviors that make it difficult for them to complete work, and they often seem confused about their inability to perform school tasks. They show symptoms of stress; they may feel discouraged, frustrated, rejected, helpless, or isolated.

These children may deny that they are having difficulty by claiming that activities or assignments are “boring” or “stupid.” They may use their humor to demean others in order to bolster their own lagging self-esteem. They urgently want to avoid failures and are unhappy about not living up to their own expectations. They may be very skilled at intellectualization as a means of coping with their feelings of inadequacy. They are often impatient and critical and react stubbornly to criticism.

Traditionally, these students are either ignored because they are perceived as average or referred for remedial assistance. School systems tend to focus on their weaknesses and fail to nurture their strengths or talents.

TYPE VI – The Autonomous Learner

The Type VI gifted child is the autonomous learner. Few gifted children demonstrate this style at a very early age although parents may see evidence of the style at home. Like the Type I’s, these students have learned to work effectively in the school system. However, unlike the Type I’s who strive to do as little as possible, Type VI’s have learned to use the system to create new opportunities for themselves. They do not work for the system; they make the system work for them. Type VI’s have strong, positive self-concepts because their needs are being met; they are successful, and they receive positive attention and support for their accomplishments as well as for who they are. They are well respected by adults and peers and frequently serve in some leadership capacity within their school or community.

Type VI students are independent and self-directed. They feel secure designing their own educational and personal goals. They accept themselves and are able to take risks. An important aspect of the Type VI is their strong sense of personal power. They realize they can create change in their own lives, and they do not wait for others to facilitate change for them. They are able to express their feelings, goals, and needs freely and appropriately.


This matrix will be useful in a number of ways. One use is as a tool for inservicing educators about gifted and talented children and youth in general and about the differentiated social and emotional needs of the specified types in particular. The model can also be used as a teaching tool in order to expand students’ awareness and understanding of the meaning of giftedness and the impact it has on their learning and relationships.”

The model may also serve as a theoretical base for empirical research in the areas of definition, identification, educational planning, counseling, and child development. By looking closely at the behavior and feelings of gifted and talented youth, better educational programming may be developed to meet their diversified needs.

Putting The Research To Use

It is essential that educators and parents understand the cognitive, emotional, and social needs of the gifted and talented. “Profiles of the gifted and talented” provides a framework for a better understanding of these students by looking closely at their feelings, behavior, and needs. Additional information is provided concerning adult and peer perceptions, identification, and home and school interactions. Parents and educators use the profiles to gain a deeper awareness of the gifted and talented. They are also able to use the information for inservice and courses concerning the nature and needs of the gifted and talented. Furthermore, educators can present the information directly to students in order to help them develop more insight into their own needs and behavior. “Profiles of the gifted and talented” is a starting point for those who want to develop a greater awareness and insight into these students. The application of the approach will provide deeper and greater understanding of our gifted and talented.

Profiles of the Gifted & Talented

-Positive self-concept
-Guilty about failure
-Extrinsic motivation
-Responsible for others
-Diminish feelings of self and rights to their emotion
-Self critical
-High Achiever
-Seeks teacher approval and structure
-Non-risk taking
-Does well academically
-Accepts & conforms
-To see deficiencies
-To be challenged
-Assertiveness skills
-Help with boredom
-Appropriate curriculum
-Loved by teachers
-Admired by peers
-Loved and accepted by parents
-Grade point average
-IQ Tests
-Teacher nominations
-Freedom to make choices
-Time for personal interests
-Risk taking experiences
-Accelerated and enriched curriculum
-Time for personal interests
-Compacted learning experiences
-Opportunities to be with intellectual peers
-Development of independent learning skills
-In-depth studies
-College & career counseling
-Low self-esteem
-Heightened sensitivity
-Uncertain about social roles
-Corrects teacher
-Questions rules, policies
-Is honest, direct
-Has mood swings
-Demonstrates inconsistent work habits
-Has poor self control
-Is creative
-Prefers highly active & questioning approach
-Stands up for convictions
-Is competitive
-To be connected with others
-To learn tact, flexibility, self-awareness, self control, acceptance
-Support for creativity
-Contractual systems
-Find them irritating
-Engaged in power struggle
-See them as creative
-Discipline problem
-Peers see them as entertaining
-Want to change them
-Don't view as gifted
-Peer Recommendations
-Parent nomination
-Recommendation from a significant, non-related adult
-Creativity Testing
-Teacher advocate
-Acceptance and understanding
-Allow them to pursue interest
-Advocate for them at school
-Modeling appropriate behavior
-Family projects
-Placement with appropriate teacher
-Cognitive & social skill development
-Direct and clear communication with child
-Give permission for feelings
-Studies in-depth
-Mentorships build self-esteem
-Behavioral contracting
-Diminished feelings of self and right to their emotions
-Denies talent
-Drops out of G/T and advanced classes
-Resists challenges
-Wants to belong socially
-Changes friends
-Freedom to make choices
-To be aware of conflicts
-Awareness of feelings
-Support for abilities
-Involvement with gifted peers
-Career/college info
-Viewed as leaders or unrecognized
-Seen as average and successful
-Perceived to be compliant
-Seen as quiet/shy
-Adults see them as unwilling to risk
-Viewed as resistive
-Gifted peer nomination
-Home nomination
-Community nomination
-Achievement testing
-IQ Tests
-Teacher advocate
-Acceptance of underground
-Provide college & career planning experiences
-Time to be with same age peers
-Provide gifted role models
-Model life-long learning
-Give freedom to make choice
-Recognize & properly place
-Give permission to take time out from G/T classes
-Provide same sex role models
-Continue to give college & career information
-Poor self-concept
-Has intermittent attendance
-Doesn't complete tasks
-Pursues outside interests
-"Spaced out" in class
-Is self-abusive
-Isolates self
-Is creative
-Criticizes self & others
-Does inconsistent work
-Is disruptive, acts out
-Seems average or below
-Is defensive
-An individualized program
-Intense support
-Alternatives (separate, new opportunities)
-Counseling (individual, group, and family)
-Remedial help with skills
-Adults are angry with them
-Peers are judgmental
-Seen as loners, dropouts, dopers, or air heads
-Reject them and ridicule
-Seen as dangerous and rebellious
-Review cumulative folder
-Interview earlier teachers
-Discrepancy between IQ and demonstrated achievement incongruities and inconsistencies in performance
-Creativity testing
-Gifted peer recommendation
-Demonstrated performance in non-school areas
-Seek counseling for family-Diagnostic testing
-Group counseling for young students
-Nontraditional study skills
-In-depth studies
-Alternative out of classroom learning experiences
-Low self-esteem
-Demonstrates inconsistent work
-Seems average or below
-May be disruptive or acts out
-Emphasis on strengths
-Coping skills
-G/T support group
-Skill development
-Seen as "weird"
-Seen as "dumb"
-Viewed as helpless
-Avoided by peers
-Seen as average or below in ability
-Perceived to require a great deal of imposed structure
-Seen only for the disability
-Scatter of 11 points or more on WISC or WAIS
-Recommendation of significant others
-Recommendation from informed special ed. teacher
-Teacher Advocate
-Recognize gifted abilities
-Challenge them
-Provide risk-taking opportunities
-Advocate for child at school
-Do family projects
-Seek counseling for family
-Placement in gifted program
-Provide needed resources
-Provide alternative learning experiences
-Begin investigations and explorations
-Give time to be with peers
-Give individual counseling
-Self confident
-Self accepting
-Accepted by others
-Desire to know & learn
-Accepts failure
-Intrinsic motivation
-Personal power
-Accepts others
-Has appropriate social skill
-Works independently
-Develops own goals
-Follows through
-Works without approval
-Follows strong areas of passion
-Is creative
-Stands up for convictions
-Takes risks
-Support for risks
-Appropriate opportunities
-Accepted by peers and adults
-Admired for abilities
-Seen as capable and responsible by parents
-Positive influences
-Psychologically healthy
-Grade point average
-Demonstrated performance
-Achievement Testing
-Teacher/Peer/Parent self nominations
-IQ tests
-Creativity Testing
-Advocate for child at school and in community
-Provide opportunities related to passions
-Allow friends of all ages
-Remove time and space restrictions
-Do family projects
-Include child in parent's passion
-Allow development of long-term integrated plan of study
-Accelerated and enriched curriculum
-Remove time and space restrictions
-Compacted learning experiences with pretesting
-In-depth studies
-College & career counseling and opportunities
-Dual enrollment or early admission
-Waive traditional school policy and regulations


Colangelo, N. and Parker, M. (1981). Value differences among gifted adolescents. Counseling and Values, 26, 35-41.

Daniels, P .R. (1983) Teaching the gifted/learning disabled child. Rockville, MD: Aspen Systems Corporation.

Delisle, J.R. (1982). Striking out: Suicide and the gifted adolescent. Gifted/Creative/Talented, 13, 16-19.

Fox, L.H., Brody, L., and Tobin, D. (1983). Learning-disabled/gifted children. Baltimore: University Park Press.

Goertzel, V. and Goertzel, M. (1962). Cradles of eminence. Boston: Little, Brown and Company.

Gregory, E.H. and Stevens-long, J. (1986). Coping ski/Is among highly gifted adolescents. Journal for the Education of the Gifted, 9, 147-155.

Gunderson, C. W., Maesch, C., and Rees, J. W. (1988). The gifted/learning disabled student. Gifted Child Quarterly, 31, 158-160.

Kaiser, C.F., Berndt, D.J. and Stanley, G. (1987). Moral judgment and depression in gifted adolescents. Paper presented at the 7th World conference on Gifted and Talented Children, Salt lake City, Utah.

Kerr, B. (1985). Smart girls, gifted women. Columbus, OH: Ohio Psychology. Maker, J. (1977). Providing programs for the gifted handicapped. Reston, VA: Council for Exceptional Children.

Roeper, A. (1982). How the gifted cope with their emotions. Roeper Review, 5, 21-24.

Scholwinski, E. and Reynolds, C.R. (1985). Dimensions of anxiety among high IQ children. Gifted Child Quarterly, 29, 125-130.

Strang, R. (1965). The psychology of the gifted child. In W.B. Barbe, (Ed.). Psychology and education of the gifted: Selected readings (pp. 113-117). New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts.

Whitmore, J .R. and Maker, J. (1985). Intellectual giftedness in disabled persons. RockvilIe, MD: Aspen Systems Corporation.

If you’re interested in online learning options for your gifted child, our Explore and Davidson Academy Online courses provide unique gifted learning experiences and are taught by world-class educators who understand gifted needs.

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Bukola Adedokun

Teachers need to fully dig deeper to recognize the multitude of students who are gifted in a classroom.

Vanesis Yost

The type VI gifted students sound like the future successful entrepreneurs of the world. "They find a way to make the system work for them." I can just imagine them traveling the world on vacation while their successful business is ran with little to no effort.

Maria Rosa Sanchez

As a mother with a GT kid and as a teacher, that explication help me a lot to understand better the different types and how to face them

Katya Diaz

This article is so interesting, explain the 6 types of Gifted and Talented students and how to identify.

Pamela Womack

In learning about the six types of TAG students, it helped me widen my vision on how to find ways to support each type of learner.

Denise Alcover

I have learned much more from this training than I was expecting. The different strengths and weaknesses to look for are so simple, yet identifiable in our students.

Lidia van Blerk

After reading this research article I understand why the Gifted program falls under the ESE Department. These students are really struggling to fit in with their peers and needs the support facilitators to guide them through this maze.

Heather McNeil

Yes, I agree that these students are really struggling. The sad part is for those who 'go underground' to fit in and deny their talent. For some the system has failed them because they were not identified early to get the needed services and support. This course has really taught me so much to help me better serve the 'gifted' students in my classroom.

Denise Alcover

Students who struggle to fit in are ofen in this catagory. As a counselor, I strive to help these students seek self acceptance.

Allison Sturdivant

As a mother of two children that are gifted this article expanded my knowledge of what it means to be gifted. The six traits were excellently broken down. My personal children and the gifted students I have taught are clearly different and teachers need to be mindful of the different classifications to that all gifted learner's needs can be served to the best of our abilities.

Charlotte Gonzalez

I thought this article was very informative and helpful. I have come to the conclusion that I am Type VI, as I am a 12 year old, but I write my own poetry and other writing outside of school, reading classics, compose music, and find myself thinking about very philosophical concepts. This article provided so much more insight on myself, and reassure me that there are others like myself somewhere, which is something I have doubted for a while now.


I'm identified as being in the type 2 category and it's crazy because I still amaze people by my work in class and outside of school but I'm also facing things such as marijuana which has caused me to go down. Type 2 is on point with me and I am identified by type 2 from my school. I'm a 17 year old male.

Virginia Nwuba

The article provided a lot of insight regarding giftedness and how we as educators need to be mindful of these specific characteristics that define a student as Gifted and Talented. It is therefore our responsibility as educators to nurture these traits we find in our GT students.

Tim Thomas

This article is very informative. Breaking down the differences behind the various gifted profiles allows teachers and other adults to respond appropriately to impact the student's success rather than react in a way that may create a negative impact.

Michelle Maxwell

Very interesting article, enjoyed reviewing the 6 types of gifted students/people, always find the dropout to be very interesting. I believe I fit the criteria for the successful learner.

Michelle Maxwell

Very interesting article, enjoyed reviewing the 6 types of gifted students/people, always find the dropout to be very interesting.

Sandy Johnson

I truly enjoyed reading this article and it gave me a clear picture of myself that I was not really aware of. I appreciate the opportunity to be exposed to this article through Region 4 Education Service under the GT Professional Development Program. I am looking forward to read more articles from this author in the near futture.

Bridget Rodgers

Teachers need to realize that all students are not the same. They should identify the talented and gifted students early.

Bridget Rodgers

Teachers should notice that all students not the same. You need to meet their need by identification early.

Bridget Rodgers

This article provided great information on the 6 different types of gifted. Teachers should look at all the different aspects of a gifted child. Students should be taking with concern for their social and emotional needs.

Sandra Lopez

Is a great article it explains the 6 types of GT students. Now I see in which profile my son is, because he is a GT student. This gave me more information of him and how he is learning. This gave me information how to identify and provide to their needs.

Militza Cunningham

The article is well written and give great detail. It nails the gifted students well, and allows the teacher to see why some of them are difficult to handle, put up with, and manage on the whole. Now, that I said is possible to let them unwind, be excitable and still function well. The dangers of some is in thinking they are smarter than the teacher. That always tells me they could be in for some rude awakenings down the line. I find their questioning and wondering stimulating, but I think we do them a service when we let it unfold and then tie it all back up in a nice package for them. In other words, all that fiery energy is put to good use when ordered. Many GT students do need that. If they do not get it they can drift for years.

Robin Goldenberg

These articles have given me a better understanding of Gifted and Talented students, and how to identify and provide to their needs.

Danna Arbuckle

This article offered great insight into the the GT learner including social and emotional needs.

Stefanie Friedman

I enjoyed this article. I do find it also easy thought to group all children in these sub types, not only those considered GT. But, I also believe all children are gifted in certain areas, it just takes time for them and others to see their gifts.

Kelley Nicholson

I have a child who is gifted across the board in all areas and while I find this article very informative, I really could not find a single group that I feel this child falls under. Perhaps there is a questionnaire that one can fill out to get a better understanding of which group a child fits into?

Constance Peel

I enjoyed this article. It explains the six different types of GT students in depth and the importance of identifying and understanding their academic and social needs.

Wandolyn D. Jones

The articles were awesome and I enjoyed reading about the different types of GT students. It is good to know that they have social and emotional needs just like regular students.

Brett Johnson

This is so informing. I can identify with so many of my students in all of these areas. Loved this article.

Amy Tichacek

Great article about the students being being able to teach them in different ways.

Irma Castillo

Reading this article allowed me to visualize the numerous students that I taught many years ago that went unidentified due to lack of knowledge regarding GT students and their needs. We owe it to our students to know about these Types and characteristics, in order to best support our GT students and their families, since they likely carry over these behaviors into their personal space/time. Helping types 1-5 students to have a positive self-concept and positive attention behooves us all as we face this ever fluid school society.


The article on traits is informative and eye-opening for many who maybe are challenged in recognizing giftedness due to unachievement. Without differentiated instruction in the classroom, a bored, unchallenged gifted student may behave poorly, refuse to do work he/she feels is redundant or a waste of time, and may even become beligerent.

Elizabeth Halterman

Such a thoughtful response and so on target!

S. W. Warren

Since the pandemic, I have seen a a marked increase in the number of the Under Ground and the At Risk students, especially girls. I have also seen many fewer Autonomous learners. Before the pandemic, our high school would have 30 or more TPSP year long projects. Last year we had only twelve and just 3 were seniors who had chosen the class since ninth grade. Many more students are opting out of AP and ACE classes because of stress and as a result of online learning, doing just enough to pass or make their A or B.

Larissa Cowey

I am entering my 27th year teaching Middle School Science students and it shouldn't, but it amazes me how many female students fit into these types. For years, I have been working on The Underground students. Mixed results as some seem to thrive on encouragement and gentle nudging, while a few resent my interest.

Aisha Jones

The breakdown of the various TYPES gave me a clear understanding of the behaviors I have experienced while teaching my GT learners. This is good to know as I challenge myself to positively develop my students and excite their desire to learn.

Lori Bolinsky

This was an interesting article giving very specific information on the types and varieties of GT students. I can see many of the characteristics offered in students I have taught.

Karen Sealy

Interesting article

Melissa Tatar

This is an interesting article. What stuck out to me was the type 3. Kids today want to feel like they belong and fit in. Most will do or say just about anything to be accepted by others. I think it is beginning earlier than middle school for some kids.

Judy Barnett

I wish this research was available when my children were
identified GT. As a parent, I wish I knew many of the strategies to help my oldest with social skills, and help her
develop emotionally.

Eddy Martinez

I enjoyed this article.The descriptions given really made open my eyes to what and how students act. It made me think about some of my students from this year.

Eleanor Grady

This is an interesting article. I was interested in type III, particulary where some AGT girls are more interested in fitting in with their social group than with concentrating on their learning. It advises to be accepted for who they are to allow the transition but it would depend on their social group dynamic.

Kimberly Bullock

I found it interesting also that that Type III are typically gifted girls. It makes sense that they are called "The Underground" because they are want to fit in socially. Thus, they hide who they really are to fit into the social mold they think they want and need.

Heather Turney

This article provided useful information related to understanding gifted and talented students in a more comprehensive way. I appreciated the chart also.

Mariana Chiriac

That was a very interesting article. It gave me a clearer understanding of different types of gifted students.

David Poeana

There are six categories of the gifted:
It was interesting to see how each category develops some kind of defense mechanism in order to cope with their giftedness. Everyone has to adapt somehow and not everyone is capable of coping with their giftedness. That is why we can even see dropouts among the most gifted students.


Really enjoyed learning about type 2.


I was a gifted student who dropped out of AP classes and later college. My teachers and parents classified me as lazy and irresponsible and wrote me off as just someone who didn't want to do their homework. Nobody ever thought to address the reason of why I wasn't motivated - why school didn't feel relevant or meaningful to me.

After a couple of years on my own I started voraciously devouring books and online college lectures on subjects I barely paid attention to in school (Science, History, Philosophy, Psychology). Along with teaching myself programming, I'm now known at work as the guy to talk to about these things - the same subjects in high school that I ignored to read fiction, slip letters to my friends and sleep.

Don't demonize the kid for not doing homework. Homework is boring busy work, and gifted kids hate boring things that lack meaning. Instead try to figure out what will motivate and stimulate them. Explain the relevance of what you are teaching them rather than just forcing facts to be memorized. For god's sake, don't put gifted kids in regular classes or remove them from higher level classes just because they are depressed.

We are not taking care of the brightest and most empathetic people in our society, the people with the most creative imaginations and the most passion. Just like your wife will start acting bored or distant with you if you don't treat her right, kids will act that way if the school system doesn't treat them right.

No one loves learning more than me, but my 12 years of K12 and 1 year of college were almost entirely a complete drag, depressing, demotivating, and detrimental to my self-confidence and sense of social belonging. The only highlights were projects where I was given autonomy to create using my imagination, such as a Senior Project where I composed a song, or a history class where I was asked to create my own culture. And let me ask you -what would teach somebody more about music theory? Having them do a multiple choice homework assignment? Or when the kid spends 6 months writing an 11 minute long orchestra song that he completely owns from start to finish?

Jacob Mithika

Hello Michael. I can relate to almost everything that you're talking about. How can I reach out to you and maybe have a conversation. We have alot in common. With regards to your story. There's this group I'm working on called Association of Twice Exceptional students and I would like to have a chat with you.

Steve Tysor

Probably very important to remember our students could relate, or be associated with several of these classes.

Margarita Gat-ud

I enjoyed reading this article. This is very helpful for me as a new teacher to be able to cater/ help my students who are gifted and talented become successful and also would help us assess our students that were overlooked or who are gifted and talented but were not helped before and also to all our students who has different abilities/talents.

Mary Neal

Interesting how so much of the gifted individual depends on the school/teachers and parents for their role in the classroom and society.

wendy sanne

I fund this article to be very interesting. I enjoyed watching the video as I am a visual learner. I have seen all six types of students in my 30 years of teaching. I tend to favor the "challenging" student because they can always back up their beliefs with facts or situations.

Crystal Peterson

I enjoyed the article. This article talks about the 6 different types of gifted and talented students. I always like reading about the dropout. I believe each category needs help and improvement on what we provide and school but I wish we could do more for the dropouts.

Rubyolly Carpena Villarta

I really enjoy reading this topic the 6 profiles of Gifted and Talented. It gives me a lot of information. Now these gives me a background knowledge to work on with my students.

Jannie Jordan

To read about how gifted and talented students may be overlooked because of personality traits and behaviors that don't conform with more commonly understood categories is inconsiderate. The public should be made aware and awareness should be transparent in the school system.

Tracy Dickson

It was very interesting to read about how gifted and talented students may be overlooked because of personality traits and behaviors that don't conform with more commonly understood categories of what it means to be gifted.

Tracy Dickson

This information opened my eyes to the many different traits and characteristics of gifted and talented children.

Alma R Capallera

I was in awww with the explanation of the 6 different types of GT students and how we over look this students when we don't know about different types of GT, gave me a better understanding on how to identify GT students.

Robert McClintick

Great article, I quickly put names and faces to the groups described.

Jeff Ransom

Short and sweet, good synopsis of the diversity in the group all labeled "gifted". Will help to plan instruction as I move forward realizing that there are many models to be met.

Rachel Leriche

This was an easy to read article, gave me a better understanding how I can identify a student and what their needs may be.

Fernando Luna

I think this is a very easy to read article. The 6 types of gifted learners gives an easy to follow profile sheet that any teacher could use to evaluate students.

Melissa Tatar

I was thinking the same thing. The profile sheet would be so helpful when trying to identify students and understand his/her needs.

Sandra Hernandez

This article was really interesting. It definitely changed my perception of what a gifted and talented is. The characteristics explained in the article are very useful to teachers so we can understand, identify, and refer a student.

Genevieve Mauch

Yes, I agree with you.

Andrew Brown

This article was very insightful because it challenged my notion of what a GT student is like. It encourages you to look at each child and consider their background, personality, wants/needs/interests.

Jillian Haberman

I love the concept of the specificity of the "types", however wonder at the further division of a label. Is it necessary to further divide this or could we just meet every person where they are and help them to continue to move forward in their educational desires?

Dawn Burgess

I agree completely that we should meet every child where they are, and that no child exactly fits any of these sub-labels (which the original article from 1988 specifically acknowledges). However, this classification is incredibly useful in discussing gifted students with general classroom teachers, especially those who say "___ isn't gifted, they aren't getting As on the regular assignments." There's a huge ongoing need to educate classroom teachers about the multitude of ways that high ability students can present in the classroom.

marjorie gil

I am looking for an official French Version that could be used with our French Gifted and Talented teacher. Does it exist? I found some but they do not seem to be official.

Erica DelValle

These articles have given me a better understanding of Gifted and Talented students, and how to identify and provide to their needs.

Margarita Gat-ud

Same here, now at least I can refer students to the right people to help them succeed.

Rogelio Guzman

Great article explaining the 6 types of GT students. My son is a GT student and I could see the profile he fits into. This alone gave me more insight into his learning and behavior.

Jillian Haberman

I wonder if there are only 6 types of G/T students or if it is actually more complicated than that. Of course, by the question, I bet you already know what I think!

Jennie Graham

I enjoyed this article! It goes in depth to explain the 6 different types of GT students and the importance of understanding their nature and needs. As a teacher it is important to remember to differentiate their social and emotional needs because of each GT students diversified needs.

Jeff Davis

This article extended much of what I’ve previously knew. The emphasis on personality traits was an interesting addition to the current study of the gifted and talented child. I will definitely incorporate this nuance of personality blended with their particular gifts and talents into my daily classroom instruction and activities.

Lori Bolinsky

I agree that to be a good teacher we must not only look at the intellectual needs of the student, but more importantly see that we serve their social and emotional needs as well.

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