Title: Understanding Resilience in Diverse, Talented Students in an Urban High School
Author: Sally M. Reis, Robert D. Colbert, Thomas P. Hebert
Author's purpose for writing: to better understand why and how some at-risk gifted students remain resilient despite challenges, and others underachieve.
Author's methodology: three year study of 35 ethnically diverse, academically talented high school students who either achieved or underachieved. Comparative, cross-case study. In-depth interviews with students and their families to examine risk factors and protective factors. Participant observation.
Author's research question: what factors do high achieving students in an urban high school identify as contributing to their resistance?
What factors may contribute to the inability to display resilience in underachieving students placed at risk in an urban high school?
What author discovered, conclusions/implications: Protective factors include supportive adults, friendships with other achieving students, opportunities to take honors/advanced classes, participation in multiple extracurricular activities, development of a strong belief in self, development of ways to cope with negative aspects of their lives, previous participation in a G/T program, religious training, and, for girls, a conscious decision not to date.
Underachievers had specific risk factors: older sibling as dropouts or drug users, fewer protective factors, inappropriate early curricular activities, absence of challenge, negative interaction with teachers, BOREDOM, family dysfunction, minimal parental and academic guidance and support.