Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Committee Chair

Stephen Laws


hroughout the history of gifted education, the underachievement of gifted students has been a conundrum for educators. In fact, underachievement in gifted students is defined in various ways by researchers. A wide range of contributing factors for gifted underachievement exists in previous studies. The perceptions held by students and educators regarding these factors have been studied by many researchers as an attempt to understand the nuances that exist within the concept of underachievement in gifted students.

This quantitative study examined the perceptions of school administrators concerning the factors that impact underachievement in gifted students. The study surveyed administrators from multiple school districts in South Carolina. The study sought to gather perceptional data related to how gifted students perceived themselves; how gifted students perceived peers, adults, and society felt about them; and how gifted students perceived instructional programs. The data analysis revealed that the administrators felt that a lack of student motivation was the biggest factor contributing to the underachievement of gifted students. The research provided in previous studies supported administrator perceptions regarding the lack of student motivation. The research from previous studies also revealed that the quality of instructional programs and teacher skills were big factors contributing to the underachievement of gifted students.

This study did not reveal anything in the data that presents a negative effect on gifted education. It supports the body of research that indicates that the instructional programs for the gifted continue to improve over the years.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.