Date of Conferral







Medha Talpade


Although previous studies have acknowledged the role of teacher training in working with children with special needs, none have investigated the relationship between teacher training and referrals. There is a need to understand the factors that affect K-12 classroom teachers' referrals of twice exceptional (2E) students into gifted programs. Supported by the optimal stimulation theory, the purpose of this quantitative study was to determine if there is a relationship between teacher training and 2E student referrals. The survey method was used to collect data from 102 K-12 teachers in the Ohio school district on their teaching credentials, ranging from no training to being certified to teach gifted children.The teachers read a vignette about a hypothetical student who had an emotional behavior disorder and indicated their decision for referral. Phi and Cramer's V tested the validity of the hypothesis that teachers will make referrals according to their level of training. A binary logistic regression was performed to determine which factors predicted the referral of the hypothetical 2E student described in the vignette and the number of self-reported referrals during the previous year. Teachers who received training in the education and learning of exceptional students beyond the current level of degree for K-12 teachers were significantly more likely to refer 2E students to their school's gifted program. Teachers who received advanced training in working with exceptional students were significantly more likely to have made referrals of 2E students during the previous academic year. The results of this study can initiate positive social change by aiding teacher-educators or leaders in education to make specific recommendations for teacher training in an attempt to respond to the needs of 2E students.