Publication Details

Wormald, C. (2011). What knowledge exists in NSW schools of students with learning difficulties who are also academically gifted?. Australasian Journal of Gifted Education, 20 (2), 5-9.


Little or no empirical research on students who are gifted with learning difficulties has been conducted in Australia. This research investigated the knowledge teachers in New South Wales, Australia had of these students. A mixed methods approach was adopted involving surveys and interviews of teachers from primary and secondary schools across all education sectors. The study focussed on two issues: the teachers' knowledge of, and attitudes towards these students; and, the educational programs they implemented for these students. Demographics from the survey highlighted the lack of post-graduate training by teachers in both gifted education and learning difficulties. The findings showed that schools are not able to identify these students and are not meeting their specific educational needs. The evidence suggested that schools exhibited inconsistent knowledge about these students, and demonstrated a lack of understanding of how these students are affected by what the teachers do in the classroom.