Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Charol Shakeshaft

Second Advisor

Donna Dockery

Third Advisor

Micah McCreary

Fourth Advisor

Whitney Newcomb


This study examined the extent to which teachers’ levels of cultural competence is a factor in the nomination/referral process for gifted identification of culturally and linguistically diverse students. Specifically, this study compared the self-assessed perceptions of second and third grade elementary teachers’ cultural competence to the various factors included in the gifted referral process. A quasi-experimental quantitative study was used. However, this study superficially included some qualitative exploration due to the nature of the open-ended survey questions and secondary data set analysis. Quantitative data were collected via an adapted version of the Cultural Competence Self-Assessment for Teachers survey created by Lindsey, Robins, & Terrell (2009). Descriptive statistics, analysis of variance, independent samples t-test, and correlation analysis were conducted. Results revealed that there were no significantly statistical differences in the relationship between teachers’ levels of cultural competence and nomination/referral patterns for gifted identification. Yet, the results also indicated that the district’s second and third grade teachers were generally high on the cultural competence continuum. An overwhelming majority of the teachers believed themselves to be culturally competent however, cultural competence sub-scale scores in institutionalizing cultural knowledge and interacting with CLD students were lower percentages when compared to the other sub-scale scores. In general, this study may have important practical implications for the ongoing process of becoming culturally competent, gifted education practices and policy, teacher preparation, and professional practice.


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Date of Submission

May 2014

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