The Belin-Blank Center has asked Gerald Aungst, Curiosity Engineer (@GeraldAungst, www.geraldaungst.com), to teach pre-service and practicing teachers about Gifted & General Education Collaboration (course number EDTL:4153:0WKA), from October 8 through October 28.
Referring to the class, he noted, “gifted learners aren’t gifted only when they are in their gifted education classes; it is critical for gifted teachers and general education teachers to work together. This collaboration can be challenging due to conflicting goals, competing schedules, or incompatible philosophies. Learn strategies for making it work despite the complications.”
Describing collaboration as key for successful programming, the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) has a position statement dating back to 2014, emphasizing that, “Collaboration among gifted, general, special education and related services professionals is essential to meet the varied needs of today’s diverse student population.”
This online class, like all those offered through the Center (in partnership with the College of Education), fulfills a requirement in one of the strands (the Programming strand) necessary for the State of Iowa Endorsement in Gifted Education.
Online classes have research support for benefits including “time for deeper reflection and the elimination of traditional professional development’s social and physical boundaries” (Edinger, 2017, p. 301). Edinger cites Little and Housand (2011), who found that educators wanting to better serve gifted learners can benefit from online teacher professional development (oTPD) “since these small groups of teachers are separated from one another by distance, but can make professional connections to each other in an online environment” (p. 301).
This one-semester-hour asynchronous class is offered through Distance and Online Education at the University of Iowa; participants must register as Distance Education Nondegree-Seeking students (no cost for registration). Classes offered in this focused workshop format have the same tuition for in- and out-of-state students, and they have no extra fees. Tuition is currently $560 for graduate students per hour and $337 for undergraduate students per hour. Anyone may register as an undergraduate through Distance and Online Education; undergraduate credit is accepted by the State of Iowa for the endorsement (you should always check with your own district if you want to apply the credit for other opportunities).
More information about professional learning through the Belin-Blank Center is available at belinblank.org/educators. Upcoming courses can be reviewed by following the links to the four strands at belinblank.org/educators/courses.
Edinger, M.J. (2017). Online teacher professional development for gifted education: Examining the impact of a new pedagogical model. Gifted Child Quarterly, 6(4), 300-312.