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The advanced opportunities available for students begin with Gifted and Talented programs in elementary school, and progress to Advanced Academic Programs such as Dual Credit and Advanced Placement (AP) in high school.
The Elementary and Secondary Education Act defines gifted children as:
Students, children, or youth who give evidence of high achievement capability in areas such as intellectual, creative, artistic, or leadership capacity, or in specific academic fields, and who need services and activities not ordinarily provided by the school in order to fully develop those capabilities.
The National Association for Gifted Children developed a positioning statement to guide best practices. The NAGC states that “Students with gifts and talents perform – or have the capability to perform – at higher levels compared to others of the same age, experience, and environment in one or more domains. They require modification(s) to their educational experience(s) to learn and realize their potential.”
Courses taken at two separate institutions like a high school and a community college at the same time is referred to as dual enrollment. One course that meets the requirements of two academic institutions is referred to as dual credit.
Online college courses may be offered at high schools, or students may attend a local college or community college in person. Students can accrue college credits while in high school, resulting in considerable cost savings. Dual credit cost savings can be calculated by multiplying the number of dual credits earned by the tuition cost at a college, adding in books and fees, and even student housing.
Advanced Placement (or AP) is a program that allows high school students to take college-level curriculum and examinations. Some colleges and universities in America grant college course credit to those students who attain high AP test scores, which may provide the opportunity to skip some first-year introductory courses in college. College admissions tend to favor AP work on high school transcripts, as AP classes give students experience with college-level work while developing skills needed for academic success in college. Students interested in Advanced Placement programs have many options, including:
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