Identifying Mathematical Talent in Rural Primary School Contexts — Karen Rambo-Hernandez, Maryann Hebda, Carla Brigandi, Thomas Hallmark, & Jiangmei Yuan
Monday, May 20, 2024, 1:45 – 3:15 pm, Lawrence D. McHugh Hall, Room MCHU 206
Aptitude for mathematical talent can be present in early elementary grades and, if nurtured, can develop into later competence and expertise. Early talent identification is particularly important in settings that traditionally have fewer resources to dedicate to talent development. Rural students in need of advanced opportunities have fewer opportunities than students in urban areas, mainly due to lower per-pupil funding and number of staff allocated to gifted education and advanced academics. In the rural state where our study takes place, mathematics scores on the NAEP assessment were the second lowest nationally (only 23% proficient on the most recent NAEP assessment). Though current research in rural gifted education makes suggestions for improved identification, there is little work exploring how rural schools’ existing early academic data predicts later mathematics achievement, which may prove helpful in identifying and nurturing potential mathematical talent. The primary purpose of this research is to investigate how well third grade mathematics achievement scores can be predicted by scores and ratings from a range of prior assessments.