Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Pluim, Carolyn

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Leadership, Educational Psychology and Foundations (LEPF)


Talented students are an underserved population in American schools today. Despite being identified as talented in a certain domain, many of these students are not developing their potential into outcomes of advanced achievement and skill. Research shows that parents play a critical role in developing their children’s talent. To change the cycle of underachievement, we need to start working with the talented students to get their perspective on what helps them. This is a qualitative case study of four talented high school students to discover their perspective on how their parents influence their achievement and motivation to learn. Multiple interviews with the talented students and their mothers were conducted. Findings indicated that the talented students realized that their parents provided opportunities to challenge them outside of school, influenced their activity choices early in their life, and provided extra resources (e.g., time, knowledge and money) to be successful in these activities/interests.

Students also felt their parents had high standards and would push and challenge them to develop their talent while being encouraging. The talented students also perceived their parents gave them a lot of control over decisions that affected their personal life. Finally, the talented students perceived their parents had the right balance between supporting and challenging them.


171 pages




Northern Illinois University

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In Copyright

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