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Gifted Students in Economically Deprived Environments

The Gifted Education Department at the Arabian Gulf University (AGU) and the Johns Hopkins Centre for Talented Youth (CTY) at Johns Hopkins University in the United States recently published a study on the status of gifted students in economically deprived environments in Arab countries.

Two researchers from AGU participated in publishing the study; Vice Dean of the College of Graduate Studies for Educational Affairs Dr Alaaeldin Ayoub and Gifted Education Department Head Dr Ahmed Al Abbasi, in cooperation with Faculty Member at Johns Hopkins University's College of Education and CTY Director Dr Jonathan Blacker.

On the occasion, Dr Al Abbasi said the participation in publishing the results of the study comes in light of the support and encouragement extended by AGU's administration for the academic staff to conduct research cooperation with universities and international research centres, adding that the study sheds light on gifted students in economically deprived environments in Arab countries.

Dr Al Abbasi also explained that the study is considered one of the few to be conducted in this field worldwide, considering the complications of the topic and the lack of a unified standard for defining poverty, in addition to the lack of data that researchers can reach to study this group of students.

Commenting further, Dr Al Abbasi stated: "This relative lack of research on gifted individuals in poor environments has resulted in a lack of an integrated understanding of the best methods of detection and care, and the best services that can be provided to them. In the year 2017, Gifted Child Quarterly Magazine published a special edition that tackled this category of gifted students that sampled students in the United States. The current study comes as an unprecedented attempt to understand the gifted in economically deprived environments in Arab countries."

It is worth mentioning that the study generally aims to investigate the predictive ability of psychological, mental, academic, social and environmental needs in high achievement among economically deprived students. Multiple regression analysis results indicated that the environmental, social and psychological needs were the most predictive among the high achievers in this group of students.

Additionally, one of the most prominent contributions of the current research is the presentation of the first tool to measure the different needs of gifted students in poor environments, and it was published in one of the most prestigious journals in the field of gifted education; "Journal for the Education of the Gifted".