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The education of academically gifted students in South Korea: Innovative approaches in shadow education

Abstract Shadow education contributes to the learning and academic careers of Korean students. It benefits, in particular, gifted students who are strongly motivated and who outperform their peers academically. In this study, we explored the innovative characteristics of shadow education curricula for gifted students in terms of curricular programmes, methods, and teaching‐learning materials. Also, we explored how shadow education practices meet the academic abilities and needs of students. Informed by a literature review and qualitative research methods, the results reveal how common shadow education is; effects of shadow education; and innovative elements used in shadow education for gifted students in Korea. Overall, we found that shadow education plays a crucial role in gifted education; it is a necessary component for understanding academic excellence among students in Korea. The findings are helpful for teachers, curriculum developers, and policymakers as they explore how public schooling can help to support strongly motivated and academically advanced students.

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