Michelangelo is credited with saying, “the greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.”
Fall 2019 is the right time to expand our toolkits to learn
new ways to support the needs of gifted and talented learners. Of course, teachers earning their
endorsements in gifted education have registered as distance learners and
enrolled for credits this fall (courses with no instructor listed are
facilitated by Dr. Laurie
of Giftedness (PSQF:4120:0EXW), offered over Fall semester. (Dr.
to Educating Gifted Students (RCE/EDTL:4137:0EXW and 0EXU) has two sections
for the first time. Offered in an
accelerated format over the first eight weeks of the semester, the class has
more students than ever before. (Drs. Laurie
Croft and Kim
of Talent Development (EDTL:4067:0EXW), offered in the second eight weeks
of the semester.
Beginning at the ITAG Conference, October 14-15,
Des Moines, two semester hours of credit can be completed by teachers new to
gifted education (RCE:5237:0EXW Seminar in Gifted Education – TAG:
You’re It). This section helps guide
participants through basics that they will need to consider throughout their
first years in gifted education.
Several one-semester-hour classes, offered in the workshop format, are available this fall. These classes have no additional technology fees and focus over three weeks on one topic:
EDTL:4096:0WKA Topics: Effective Curriculum for Underserved Gifted Students tackles one of the field’s greatest challenges through a study of the book by the same name (September 10 – 30, 2019). (Dr. Chandler)
One or two semester hours can be earned by attending the ITAG Conference, October 14-15, Des Moines (PSQF:5194:0WKA Continuing Education Individual Study: Leadership in Gifted Education ITAG 2019), and completing projects of benefit to the gifted program.
Another semester hour (PSQF:5194:0WKC Continuing Education Individual Study: Identifying and Serving Young Gifted Children) begins at the ITAG Pre-Conference facilitated by Dr. Sally Beisser, Distinguished Professor of Education at Drake University, and continues online with Dr. Croft.
One more semester-hour this fall, EDTL:4096:0WKB Topics: Competitions for Elementary and Secondary Gifted and Talented Students, helps teachers understand the advantages and disadvantages of involving gifted learners in competitions. (Dr. Jenelle Miller)
The practicum experience required for the Talented and
Gifted Endorsement is available every semester.
Aim high as this new year begins. Develop your understanding of the nature and
needs of high-ability learners, as well as ways to begin to meet those needs.
The Belin-Blank Center, in partnership with departments in the University of Iowa College of Education, offers a variety of online classes this summer. While we would love to have you join us on campus for our Chautauqua course series, we know that many of those advocating for gifted/talented students benefit from the flexible online format. Each of the online classes is offered for one semester hour of credit and are three weeks in length. You can learn how to develop creativity in every learner, facilitate research projects, enhance your understanding of differentiation at the secondary level, and more!
If you will be joining us on campus for the Advanced Placement Teacher Training Institute, we offer your choice of two hours of academic credit; the Center provides a 50% tuition scholarship for those who take advantage of the graduate credit.
Time management and organization are important skills in general, but they are imperative when enrolling in and completing online AP courses. We’ve dedicated many past posts to staying motivated and preparing for online classes because preparation and planning are key components to achieving success in AP online classes. Here are some things to consider as you begin a new year of AP Online courses:
Understand expectations: The first step to successful organization is knowing what your instructor expects in terms of course requirements. Make sure you know when tests, quizzes, and assignments are scheduled, and develop a system for keeping deadlines organized (helpful suggestions can be found here). For online AP courses, it is also important to know what your school expects in terms of scheduling and exam requirements—make sure to check with your AP coordinator if these are not clear to you.
Set goals—and know what it will take to achieve them: In addition to expectations that others create, make sure to set expectations and goals for yourself as well. This often takes a two-pronged approach—thinking about the big picture and day-to-day goals. First, think about overarching goals—what do you want to gain from your AP class? What do you need to do to get there? Next, set goals for smaller assignments—the day-to-day things that lead up to success in larger goals. Block out time required for studying for tests, writing papers, and completing projects. How does working on these smaller tasks contribute to your “big picture” goal?
Make space for studying: It’s often easier to get things accomplished when you have specific time and space dedicated to studying. Setting aside a certain amount of time each day makes accomplishing your goals a priority, and a specific study space helps generate the focus required to make this a reality. Everyone’s study needs are different (this site has a helpful list of things to consider in creating a study space), but aim to use a certain space consistently so that your brain is ready to focus when it’s time to work on AP coursework.
Communicate and ask for help: If a course has unclear expectations or you’re struggling to grasp certain concepts, reach out to your course instructor, course mentor, or other instructors and students for help. Even if they don’t have the answer you’re looking for, they may have resources that can help you get there.
Other helpful tips for success in AP courses can be found here.
Online learning is a rapidly expanding trend on college campuses—according to research conducted by the Sloan Foundation, roughly one-third of U.S. undergraduate students took an online college course for credit last year. With 70-80% of collegiate institutions reporting that online education is a central focus for long-term strategy, online learning is here to stay at colleges and universities. Because college-bound students will most likely take an online course at some point, more high schools are emphasizing the importance of being prepared for the unique challenges of online learning—some districts even require high school students to take online classes prior to graduating from high school.
High school students in Iowa have a unique opportunity to prepare for online learning through the Iowa Online AP Academy (IOAPA). Students who participate in Iowa Online AP Academy (IOAPA) courses not only benefit from exposure to more rigorous, college-level coursework, but also have the opportunity to practice independent learning, utilizing an online format, and seeking additional help when needed—all skills necessary for success in online classrooms at all levels. In addition, IOAPA students also have built-in support from site coordinators and mentors. Research conducted with college undergraduates found that although learning outcomes are generally consistent between online-only and combined learning formats, access to support was one area in which online students reported difficulty. Access to these additional resources helps IOAPA students learn how to anticipate and master challenging course material, a skill necessary for success in the college environment. When confronted with online experiences in college, Iowa Online AP Academy students have already experienced some of the benefits and challenges of participating in online learning, and may be able to use the skills developed in IOAPA as they continue their education.
Enrollment in APTM coursework can be applied to many college and university graduation requirements. The table below shows how the APTM courses offered through the Iowa Online AP Academy can be applied to the 6 largest colleges and universities in the state of Iowa. The Iowa Online AP Academy is a program offered through the Belin-Blank Center at the University of Iowa.
This information was compiled on August 16, 2013 from Office of Admission websites. Check with the Office of Admissions to be sure this information is accurate and to determine how credit will be applied.