From A (Aggression) to V (Victimization): Peer Status and Adjustment Among Academically Gifted Students in Early Adolescence
© 2019 National Association for Gifted Children. Peer status is an important indicator and predictor of adjustment. While gifted children tend to enjoy favorable peer status, their social functioning during adolescence is less clear. The current study seeks to enhance this understanding by examining both preference- and reputation-based peer status of gifted adolescents. Peer nominations were used to assess the peer status, aggression, victimization, and prosocial leadership of 327 public school seventh graders (44% male; 42% White). School records provided giftedness information, course grade, and standardized test scores, and substance use was self-reported. Gifted students were viewed as less aggressive and more prosocial and had higher academic achievement than nonidentified students. Giftedness moderated the peer status–adjustment relationship. Rejection related to higher victimization and test scores, but these associations were most exaggerated for gifted students. Popularity positively related to aggression and substance use; however, the associations were greatly attenuated for gifted students. Findings underscore the heterogeneity of gifted adolescents’ social experiences.
Peairs, KF; Putallaz, M; Costanzo, PR
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