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Master of Science in Gifted Education

​Program Overview

The Master in Gifted Education Program is carefully designed to: (1) prepare educators who wish to become researchers and administrators in gifted education, and (2) to prepare K-12 teachers who wish to become gifted and talented specialists in government and private schools. The Master in Gifted Education Program has a long history of success since the 1990s and it has been revised several times to ensure that the plan of study reflects the rapid changes in the field of gifted education.

The Programs' courses are distributed across two semesters where candidates learn about: (a) main theories of giftedness, (b) best practices in assessing and identifying gifted and talented learners according to the National Association of Gifted Children (NAGC) pre-K-Grade 12 programming standards, (c) gifted selection criteria based on the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) definition of giftedness, (d) designing and developing curriculum and enrichment units that meet the cognitive needs of academically and intellectually gifted students, (e) social and emotional needs of gifted and talented learners, and (f) methods of evaluating the impact and the added-value of programs and services provided for gifted students in K-12 education.

After three decades of the establishment of the master's Program in Gifted Education at the Department of Gifted Education, we are proud of graduating more than 300 master's holders who are taking lead in different positions in K-12 education as well as higher education institutes. Last but not least, we are proud of our partnerships with leading institutes and centers in the Arab Gulf Region such as Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation for Distinguished Academic Performance, King Abdulaziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity, and the Arab Bureau of Education for the Gulf States.


The Master in Gifted Education Program will strengthen the science and practice of gifted education in K-12 and higher education institutes in the GCC countries through innovative and up-to-date methods of preparing researchers and specialists in gifted education.


The Master in Gifted Education Program is dedicated to providing rich and extraordinary learning experiences to prepare future researchers and practitioners in gifted education through evidence-based research and practices.

Program Objectives

  • To provide state of the art graduate teaching based on the highest standards for higher education quality assurance.
  • To conduct cutting-edge research that addresses different topics related to gifted education in the GCC countries.
  • To prepare distinguished future researchers in the field of gifted education.
  • To prepare distinguished gifted specialists in gifted and creative education.


Program Outline

The Master in Gifted Education Program courses are distributed across two semesters. In the first semester, candidates take core courses in gifted education, which help them build essential knowledge in different topics and themes in gifted education. The second semester courses discuss additional topics in gifted education such as counseling, gifted programs and services, and theories of giftedness.

After successfully completing all required courses, each student is assigned with two supervisors. Candidates choose their thesis topics depending on their interest and after consulting their supervisors.

Outline of courses

The Master in Gifted Education Program requires candidates to complete 36 credit hours distributed across 36 weeks of face-to-face courses. In addition to courses, candidates will have the opportunity to directly work with gifted learners throughout the practicum course.​

​First Year (First Semester)

Course Reference

Course Title

Credit Hours

GED GE 530

Introduction to Gifted Education


GED GE 531

Identification and Assessment in Gifted Education


GED GE 532

Curriculum and Teaching Methods for Gifted Students


GED GE 533



GS ES 520

Introduction to Educational Statistics


GS 500

Islamic Culture


GS ES 501

English Language


Total Credits for 1st Semester



First Year (Second Semester)

Course Reference

Course Title

Credit Hours

GED GE 529

Theories of Learning


GED GE 522

Counseling and Guidance for the Gifted


GED GE 523

Programs in Gifted Education


GS ES 620

Inferential Statistics and its Applications


GED GE 521



GS ES 621

Educational Research Methods


GED GE 622

Research Seminar


Total Credits for 2nd Semester


GED GE 670

Master Thesis


Total Credit for master’s degree


*The minimum duration for the master’s degree is two years


Courses Outline

Introduction to Gifted Education (GED GE 530)

This course introduces the education of gifted, talented, and creative students. It provides an overview of gifted education through the development of theories relevant to giftedness and creativity and their applications. The course also covers the behavioral characteristics of the gifted according to the curricula and programs to be used with them. Knowledge and concepts needed to understand the area of gifted education are introduced. Finally, the roles of society and parents in caring for and nurturing the gifted are viewed and discussed.


Identification and Assessment in Gifted Education (GED GE 531)

This course introduces students to tools and instruments to be used in identifying gifted and talented students. Learners will have a better understanding about the psychometric characteristics of these tools (validity and reliability). Learners are expected to apply their knowledge and skills in assessing various cognitive and affective characteristics of children in school. Moreover, throughout this course, students will develop instructional practices appropriate for today's challenging classroom environment.


Curriculum and Teaching Methods for Gifted Students (GED GE 532)

This course introduces learners to developing and teaching special curriculum for the gifted and talented. Learners are familiarized with curriculum and teaching techniques appropriate for gifted children. Through readings and course assignments, learners are taught the different methods for enriching educational settings with programs to improve thinking skills.


Creativity (GED GE 533)

The major purpose of this course is to study the theoretical and practical aspects of creativity. More specifically, this introductory course addresses a number of themes on creativity including the definition of creativity, theories of creativity, levels of creativity, developing and enhancing creative thinking, assessing creativity, the relationship between creativity and other related concepts, as well as the obstacles to creativity and creative thinking. This is not a traditional course since it tackles a topic that goes beyond traditional thinking; thus, practicing creativity is one of the course objectives.


Introduction to Educational Statistics (GS ES 520)

This course discusses some fundamental concepts related to descriptive statistics. More specifically, this course sheds light on different topics related to statistics in education and psychology, including (a) distinguishing between measurement scales, (b) differentiating between study sample and study population, (c) understanding the differences between measurement of central tendency and measurement of dispersion, (d) distinguishing between norm referenced vs criterion referenced tests, and finally, (e) the current course discusses concepts of validity and reliability in educational and psychological measurements.


Theories of Learning (GED GE 529)

This course addresses the major theories and conceptions of giftedness, which allow students to gain a better understanding of this complex and multidimensional phenomenon. Hitherto, there is no absolute agreement on what giftedness is and there are a large number of theories that try to explain this phenomenon. Thus, one of the course goals is to review the different conceptions on giftedness, which will help students to criticize, reflect, and think of a theory that takes into consideration the social context of the GCC countries


Counseling and Guidance for the Gifted (GED GE 522)

This course familiarizes students with cognitive, social and emotional problems encountered by gifted children and their families at different ages and education levels.  The content of the course includes philosophy, principles and definitions of guidance, the needs for guidance and counseling for the gifted in school, as well as guidance, counseling techniques and programs, and assessing guidance and counseling programs.


Programs in Gifted Education (GED GE 523)

The major purpose of this course is to examine the theoretical and practical aspects of instructional programs for gifted and talented students. The course is designed to familiarize graduate students with the various theories, principles and models of both program and curriculum development for gifted and talented students.  In addition, this course provides learners with skills and strategies to plan suitable programs by developing, and implementing curriculum enrichment, acceleration, and extension activities appropriate for the differentiated gifted student.  This course trains learners to examine the thinking, learning, affective and creative skills that challenge the development of excellence in the curriculum and examine methods to evaluate gifted programs.


Inferential Statistics and its Applications (GS ES 620)

The course provides the basics of statistical estimation, statistical sampling, testing hypotheses, the level of significance, and statistical decision-making, including comparisons of the two statistical errors: Type I and Type II errors. In addition, the course deals with testing hypotheses of the differences between means, variances, correlations, and proportions, for both the independent and correlated data cases, and uses both parametric and nonparametric techniques. 


Practicum (GED GE 521)

This course provides students opportunities to practice what they have learned in their courses during the first semester.  Students are expected to teach thinking skills to children both directly and indirectly. In addition, students will teach one period of thinking skills and to embed thinking skills in the traditional curriculum by developing worksheets focusing on thinking skills not dealt with in the regular teaching setting. In addition, students produce and implement awareness programs to children, teachers and parents.


Educational Research Methods (GS ES 621)

This course aims to familiarize learners with scientific thinking and research methods applied in educational and psychological studies. It also equips learners with knowledge and skills needed in conducting research. Students are expected to identify research gaps, construct appropriate research questions, discuss relevant assumptions, and define and classify research variables.  Furthermore, students are expected to design a research study and follow the appropriate procedures for carrying it out. Finally, students are expected to appropriately use and cite references according the 7th edition of the APA manual.


Research Seminar (GED GE 622)

This course provides a critical survey of the research issues, policy, ethics and practices related to culturally diverse and economically disadvantaged gifted students. In addition, it enables students to explore theories of giftedness, creativity and intelligence. The chosen readings are challenging so as to stimulate interesting discussions about philosophy and practice in gifted education.

Methods of Assessment

Methods of assessment vary from formative assessment where instructors examine students' knowledge and skills at the beginning of the program, to criterion-reference assessment where students performance is being assessed based on the learning outcomes specified in each course. As we believe that there are individual differences between students, the formative assessment allows each instructor to modify the course content based on the level of each student.

Another kind of assessment employed in the Master Program in gifted education is summative assessment. Summative assessment method is used in the middle and at the end of each course through variety of methods including weekly assignment, projects, and quizzes and exams. The fourth kind of assessment is a field visit for practicum course. Our faculty schedule 16 visits in the second semester for all students to monitor their performance in teaching gifted and talented students.

Finally, the overall performance of all students is assessed at the end of the program through comparing their overall performance with the Program Learning Outcomes.

Admission Criteria

All applicants for the Master Program at the Department of Gifted Education should meet the following criteria:

  • A minimum of 3.00 out of 4.00 Grade Point Average (GPA) in the bachelor's degree from an accredited higher education institute
  • Official transcripts from all institutions attended
  • Successfully passing the interview with the Department faculty
  • Successfully passing the three admission exams: 1) an exam in gifted education, 2) English proficiency test, and 3) a mathematics test.

Graduation Requirements

  • Successfully complete 36 credit hours including course work and master thesis
  • Successfully pass master thesis defense
  • Obtain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 out of 4.00 points.


Admission and Registration Office

Arabian Gulf University

P.O. Box: 26671, Manama

Kingdom of Bahrain

Telephone: (+973) 17239999

Fax: (+973) 17239555

Website: www.agu.edu.bh


Information on Program

Department of Gifted Education

College of Graduate Studies

Arabian Gulf University

P.O. Box: 26671, Manama

Kingdom of Bahrain

Telephone: (+973) 17239999

Fax: (+973) 17239555