Research from 2e Center leadership
The following articles were authored by members of the 2e Center staff.
• Twice-Exceptional Learners: The Journey Toward a Shared Vision
For more than 50 years, the unique needs of twice-exceptional (2e) learners have challenged educators. Because of this challenge, much work has been done in different areas across the country in creating appropriate learning environments for serving this population. However, no unified way has been developed to bring together the best research and thinking regarding practice. Most importantly, no one definition has been embraced by both researchers and practitioners. To address this issue, professional organizations and specialists in the field of twice-exceptionality formed a Community of Practice and a new definition was created. This definition and how it can be used to move the field forward is presented.
• An Operational Definition of Twice-Exceptional Learners: Implications and Applications
In this article, a new definition of twice-exceptional children is proposed. In addition to introducing this new definition, the authors provide a research-based rationale for the definition, offer a clear profile of twice-exceptional youth, and summarize the development of new programs and practices to enable these students to develop their gifts while simultaneously compensating for their deficits.
The following was based on a study of Bridges Academy:
This study sought to understand the experiences of a cohort of students who entered a strengths-based private school for twice-exceptional students during middle school and successfully completed graduation requirements. Using a case study design, the researchers analyzed data collected from student and teacher interviews, parent focus groups, educational records, and psychological reports. Findings indicate areas of change and development across cognitive, emotional/behavioral, and social domains and identified five factors underlying student growth: psychological safety, tolerance for asynchrony, time, positive relationships, and the consistent use of a strengths-based, talent-focused philosophy.
Data also revealed four benefits from the talent development opportunities offered by the school. Participating in talent development activities enabled students to become part of a social group; to overcome some social, emotional, and cognitive challenges in context; to develop ongoing mentor and professional relationships with people in talent areas; and to develop expertise in an area of talent. This research supports the incorporation of a strengths-based, talent-focused approach for twice-exceptional learners.
Additional, deeper findings of this study can be found in “The Mythology of Learning” series, which is linked below:
• “Abandoning Deficit Models: A Paradigm Shift”
These additional selections provide a broad look at characteristics, educational strategies, advocacy, and current issues.
• 2eNews.com provides practical and theoretical material and ideas for professional development in schools, plus concrete and actionable support and intervention strategies around how best to serve 2e students. It is the next generation of the previously published 2e: Twice-Exceptional Newsletter.
• The 2e Resource is a place where the 2e community can come for information about raising, teaching, and working with twice-exceptional young people.
• Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities’ mission is to educate and guide parents of children with learning disabilities or ADHD.
• The Twice-Exceptional Dilemma is a handbook published by the National Education Association.
• Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG) was organized to bring attention to the unique emotional needs of gifted children. The website has a number of resources for twice-exceptional students:
• Misdiagnosis and dual diagnoses of gifted children and adults: ADHD, bipolar, OCD, Asperger’s, depression, and other disorders (Webb, J. T., Amend, E. R., Webb, N.E., Goerss, J., Beljan, P., Olenchak, F. R., 2005, Great Potential Press).
The following links will take you to selected state and district guidelines that can help educators better serve 2e students.
• Twice-Exceptional Students Gifted Students with Disabilities; Level 1: An Introductory Resource (Colorado Department of Education)
• Twice-Exceptional Guide (Ohio Department of Education)
• A Guidebook for Twice-Exceptional Students: Supporting the Achievement of Gifted Students with Special Needs (Montgomery County Public Schools)
State and Organization Guidelines on 2e Learners