Luus, S. & Watters, JJ. (2012). Gifted early adolescents' negotiating identity: A case study of self-presentation theory. Australasian Journal of Gifted Education,21(2), 19-32. Australia: Australian Association for the Education of the Gifted and Talented.
Academically gifted students are recognised as possessing considerable achievement potential. Yet many fail to perform at a level commensurate with their ability. Often gifted students in early adolescence are faced with a forced choice between fulfilment of potential and achieving stable positive relationships with peers. This choice can affect their achievement and may have far-reaching personal and social costs. This case study explored the viability of self-presentation theory to explain students' ways of negotiating their sense of self whilst developing public identity and the concomitant affects on achievement and the fulfilment of potential. Three (two male, one female) early adolescent gifted students, aged between 12 and 14 years, participated in the study. They all attended the same public school where they participated in academic extension classes for some or all of the core school subjects. The study examined how gifted students moderate their images in their learning and extra-curricular environments. Further, the study identifies those self-presentation strategies adopted that either facilitate or hinder achievement. This study may assist parents, educators and school counsellors to provide greater support for gifted adolescents
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