Self-perceptions of twice-exceptional students: The influence of labels and educational placement on the self-concept of post-secondary G/LD students
AbstractResearch highlights the importance of positive self-concept for children and the influence of self-concept on long-term success (Elbaum, 2002; Fong & Yuen, 2009; Rudasill, Capper, Foust, Callahan, Albaugh, 2009), yet studies have rarely focused on the self-perceptions of self-concept of students identified as gifted and with a learning disability (G/LD). Adopting a qualitative case study approach, this study explored how eight post-secondary G/LD students perceived the development of self-concept over time, and how labelling and educational placement influenced those self-perceptions. Data collection included a demographic questionnaire, a Body Biography, and a semi-structured interview that focused on the Body Biography and participants’ self-perceptions of educational placement, labels, social identity, group membership, and self-concept. Guided by the Marsh/Shavelson model of self-concept (1985) and the Social Identity Theory (1986), findings revealed that participants often perceived the gifted and LD components of the G/LD identification as separate entities; that a gifted in-group membership was more often perceived when discussing individual strengths, while an LD in-group membership was perceived when reflecting upon their weaknesses. The findings from this study support the notion that each G/LD student is unique and that identification methods and placement options continue to be a concern with respect to the development of self-concept for G/LD students.
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