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Distance Learning and Talent Searches

What is Distance Learning?

Distance Learning is defined as: Learning where the instructor and the students are in physically separate locations. Learning can be either, live or off-line, with or without correspondence between a teacher and student.  Correspondence can be done via video or satellite broadcasts, or online over the Internet or through CD-ROMs (computer programs).

Distance Learning has become increasingly popular since the technology has improved over the past few years.  For gifted and bright students this is an ideal forum for children to learn at home or away from school.   Students may be able to earn credit toward college or for Advanced Placement.

Many Distance Learning programs for gifted students are design specifically for their fast paced learning skills.  While many of these programs have designated grade levels, any age student can take any of the courses.  The programs designed for the gifted often require eligibility level testing which either they provide or you can provide your own proof of standardize testing results.

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Editor’s Pick

EPGY - Education Program for Gifted Youth - Stanford University

Being one of the first distance learning programs for gifted and talented youth, EPGY is seen as the standard for other distance learning programs.  Created by Stanford University, this program is offered via CD-ROM and the cost is charged for quarterly or monthly usage.  This is one of the most popular distance learning programs among parents of gifted children.  The math program is actually an accelerated math program that covers the basics at each grade level but also introduces at each level some advanced concepts that are geared toward the gifted mind.  For example, simple concepts of algebra are introduced at the 3rd grade level, though the children do not know it’s algebra.   The program introduces concepts and tests the student’s knowledge on that concept immediately.  If the student has grasped the concept, the program moves on.  Areas that need improvement are reviewed again and exercises are repeated until the student has mastered the concept.  Scoring is automatic and the results are sent to a live tutor who is assigned to each student.  There are also online virtual classrooms for additional support. 

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Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth - Johns Hopkins University

This well known program for gifted and talented has summer programs and distance learning.   With programs in math, biology, physics, psychology, economics, government, chemistry, computer science and writing, this distance education program is well rounded.  A really fun program for 6-8th graders is Descartes Cove.  This computer program is a game that  teaches math while having an adventure

Duke Talent Identification Program (Duke TIP)

Duke University has a program to support gifted students as well as a talent search.  Their distance learning program is called E-Studies and is for grades 8-12.  Here is how they describe their program. “Duke TIP’s e-Studies Program is an exciting new distance-learning opportunity that connects students with other gifted students and with a TIP instructor as they pursue advanced high-school and college-level coursework on the Internet. “

Northwestern Center for Talent Development

The Center for Talent Development's (CTD) LearningLinks Distance Learning Programs offer academically talented students the opportunity to take enrichment, high school honors, and Advanced Placement (AP) courses either online or via traditional correspondence. These programs are designed for independent students who wish to move quickly to advanced levels of coursework, whose local school offerings are limited, who have scheduling difficulties, or who are home-schooled.

Rosetta Stone - Learn a New Language at home!

Rosetta Stone Language Software


Rosetta Stone is a new approach to learning languages, they teach you the way native speakers learn, through connecting words and phrases to real-life images with written words and hearing native speakers.   It may be one of the best way for children to learn another language and have fun. 
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