Content-based Curriculum for Low Income and Minority Gifted Learners

Joyce VanTassel-Baska

This monograph addresses planning and developing curricula for low income and minority gifted learners. Issues discussed include collaboration among professionals working with these students, choice of school program delivery models, involvement of parent and community support systems in nurturing potential, and curriculum interventions directed toward the needs and profiles of this population. Section I focuses on definitions of low income and minority groups as the terms relate to gifted and talented students, intervention strategies, and collaboration among professionals. Section II describes characteristics of low income and minority gifted learners, and Section III presents model interventions to be used with this population. Finally, new directions for future curriculum and program design for use with low income and minority gifted learners are discussed.


VanTassel-Baska, J. (2003). Content-based curriculum for low income and minority gifted learners (RM03180). Storrs: University of Connecticut, The National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented.

Content-based Curriculum for Low Income and Minority Gifted Learners
Joyce VanTassel-Baska


  1. If gifted education is to be meaningful for students, curriculum planners for the gifted should be cognizant of the importance of maintaining a balanced perspective toward key issues.
  2. To ensure that curriculum for gifted learners is heavily infused with aesthetic, artistic aspects seems vital.
  3. The skills of understanding group dynamics, the organization of complex tasks, and how to motivate others must underlie a curriculum for the gifted.
  4. To ensure full development of the gifted learner in a social context, a healthy balance must be struck between independent and homogeneously grouped pursuits and heterogeneous group opportunities.
  5. If curriculum planning is to have merit, the need for a balanced perspective in the areas of general and specialized talent development, equal valuing of cognitive, affective, aesthetic, and social development of gifted and talented students, and a concern for both individual and social contributions must be satisfied.
  6. As heterogeneous classrooms become the norm, gifted and talented students cannot be served adequately without some adaptation of a continuous progress/mastery learning model.