Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation in Practice

Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Morgridge College of Education, Teaching and Learning Sciences, Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Norma Hafenstein

Second Advisor

Rashida Benerjee

Third Advisor

Shelagh Gallagher


Economic disadvantage, Family involvement, Gifted, Low income


This hermeneutic phenomenological research study addressed the persistent problem of practice of underrepresentation of economically disadvantaged students in gifted education by exploring the beliefs, experiences, and practices of families with economic disadvantages pertaining to giftedness and family involvement in education. Data was gathered from six participants with economic disadvantages and a gifted child through two interviews and analyzed using the hermeneutic circle to uncover patterns and themes.

Themes emerged around each of the three research questions including themes for beliefs and experiences pertaining to giftedness: resiliency, creativity, overexcitability, divergent thinking, twice-exceptionality, intelligence, asynchronous development, and negative behaviors. Findings also point to involvement in education on all of Epstein’s Six Types of Involvement with common supports and barriers among participants. The findings were analyzed through the lenses of Funds of Knowledge, underrepresentation of children with economic disadvantages in gifted education, and Epstein’s Six Types of Involvement. The results of this study provide implications for policy and practice that could impact underrepresentation. School districts need to review their identification policies and ensure that they have plans in place that would increase identification for students with economic disadvantage. Schools and teachers could be including parents in referrals processes and improve communication about gifted identification and services.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Jennifer Lemoine


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

216 pgs


Gifted education