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Vanderbilt Gifted Education Institute

Vanderbilt Programs for Talented Youth is pleased to offer professional development opportunities designed to help educators better serve and support high-ability students. Known collectively as the Vanderbilt Gifted Education Institute, we endeavor to develop those who work with them throughout the academic year and summer. 

On-Site Professional Development Opportunities

PTY’s Gifted Education Institute is pleased to offer a variety of professional development sessions to school staff or parent groups in an effort to provide additional support and information about the unique learning needs of high-ability students. PTY will work with school leaders or parent groups to design a session that addresses the specific learning needs and interests of the audience.

2018 Conferences

Differentiation for the Gifted Learner

March 8-9, 2018

Overview of Sessions

Online Registration (preferred)

PDF Registration

Hotels in the Area

Keynote Speakers: Kathy Gavin, Ph.D. & Shelagh Gallagher, Ph.D.

How do teachers ensure that all students’ needs are being met in their classroom? What models, resources and strategies are available and effective for differentiating instruction for our highest achieving learners?   This two day conference, designed with the classroom teacher and building administrator in mind, focuses on curriculum resources and instructional strategies that promote achievement gains for high achieving and gifted students in heterogeneous classrooms and gifted classrooms.

Learn more about developing higher level questions and products, designing units that emphasize abstract conceptual understanding, teaching through a problem based learning approach, and applying models and frameworks that promote content expertise.   We will showcase Vanderbilt Programs for Talented Youth’s (PTY) new elementary integrated science and ELA units published by Prufrock Press and continue to provide workshops on our previously published ELA middle school units and models.  The recently published Jacob’s Ladder Reading Comprehension Program nonfiction series and newly released second editions of the current Jacob’s Ladder books will also be shared.

The hands-on sessions are led by curriculum developers, PTY faculty and staff, and nationally known experts in the field of gifted education including this year’s featured speakers – Kathy Gavin, Ph.D. and Shelagh Gallagher, Ph.D. Dr. Gavin, professor emerita at the University of Connecticut, is the co-developer of the Mentoring Mathematical Minds (M2 and M3) curriculum units, designed for high ability mathematicians in the elementary grades. Dr. Gallagher, author of several problem-based learning units through Royal Fireworks Press, is a nationally recognized expert in gifted education and problem-based learning.

Best Practices in Identifying and Teaching the Gifted

The Tennessee Employment Standard

June 18-29, 2018

2018 Employment Standard Registration

During this two week experience participants will explore the nature and needs of academically gifted learners, including those who are low income and culturally different. Each day will encompass meaningful learning experiences, lectures from national experts in gifted education, and opportunities to interact with other education professionals. In this workshop you will also practice methods for differentiating curriculum and discuss strategies for meeting the needs of gifted students. Click here for more information about this training.

For additional information about dates, times, and session locations, please contact Sarah DeLisle ( or 615.322.3179).