Update from the 2e Center for Research and Professional Development

2e Center News

By Susan Baum

September, 2018


About this Column

The 2e Center is located on the campus of Bridges Academy in Studio City, California. In this column, we share what’s happening at our center and report research findings, teaching ideas, and parenting suggestions we have found to be successful in helping 2e kids thrive.
— SB

This is an exciting time to be part of the 2e community. Worldwide, many are catching the 2e wave, and our Center is excited to be a part of the momentum. Just in the last few weeks, we have been communicating with scholars, practitioners, and parents from Sweden, the Netherlands, Germany, and Switzerland. This month we are presenting at a conference in Munster, Germany, dedicated to giftedness and twice-exceptionality. Earlier this summer, 28 participants, made up of teachers, administrators, parents, and therapists from six states, Canada, and Australia, attended a week-long “Study with the Masters” program on the Bridges campus. They came to learn more about how to meet the needs of 2e students and their families.

Further evidence of the desire for knowledge and skill in this area was the popularity of the online Bright and Quirky Summit, organized by Debbie Steinberg Kuntz last spring. [See the previous issue of 2e Newsletter (July, 2018) for information on this event.] Over 16,000 participants from around the world listened to a formidable group of professionals sharing their knowledge, insights, and expertise related to nurturing twice-exceptional students.

Nevertheless, we still frequently hear 2e families voice frustration with the difficulty in locating professionals who truly understand their children. Doctors, therapists, and school personnel often have limited experience with these students and fail to deeply understand dual diagnosis and its implications. Furthermore, opportunities to learn more about 2e students seem scarce.

At the 2e Center, we have seen a positive response from educators who sense that traditional programs are not meeting the needs of 2e students and who are seeking ways to develop more appropriate programs for them. We are also seeing enterprising parents who are taking the initiative by starting their own independent schools designed to address the unique learning profiles of their twice-exceptional youngsters. If these efforts are to succeed, they must be populated by knowledgeable professionals who will provide academic and psychological support and leadership, along with expertise in the field of twice-exceptionality.

In response to this growing need for knowledge and expertise, a new institution has been born: the Bridges Graduate School of Cognitive Diversity in Education. Licensed to operate in the State of California, this graduate school embraces the philosophy of celebrating human cognitive diversity and the belief that education should be strength-based and talent-focused. It will offer two degree programs in cognitive diversity and one certificate program in twice-exceptional education. These programs, described below, are hybrid in nature. The majority of coursework will be online, with required summer residencies on the Bridges Academy campus in Los Angeles.

Programs Offered at the
Bridges Graduate School of Cognitive Diversity in Education


Program Description

Intended Audience

Doctor of Education in Cognitive Diversity in Education (Ed.D.)

  • 60-credit hybrid program
  • Designed to be completed in four years
  • Includes three summer residencies, a clinical practicum, internship, comprehensive exams, and a Problem of Practice dissertation
  • Areas of concentration: 
    • Twice exceptionality and cognitive diversity
    • Strength-based, talent focused curriculum
    • Leadership for innovation
  • Professionals who already have a master’s degree in fields such as education, counseling, or psychology and who are seeking an active role in the cognitive and neurodiversity movements
  • Those who want to advance their understanding of cognitive diversity and twice-exceptional learners, and take an active role in promoting educational opportunities away from remediation to a more strength-based, talent-focused approach
  • Administrators, special education directors, coordinators of programs for gifted and talented, educational therapists, counselors, classroom teachers, counselors, psychologists, and service providers

Master’s in Education in Cognitive Diversity in Education (M.Ed.)

  • 36-credit, two-year, hybrid, online program
  • Designed to be completed mostly online, with two mandated two-week summer residencies required.
  • Includes a practicum experience, completion of a capstone project (action research), and participation in a master seminar where the action research project is shared and discussed with faculty and student cohort


  • Educators or others with a background or interest in cognitively diverse learners and who are interested in exploring issues related to meeting their needs
  • Educators who want to be instructional leaders within their districts, able to do the following:
    • Assist with decisions related to the development of personalized plans for cognitively diverse students with high abilities
    • Lead teams in identifying instructional strategies that address the paradoxical needs of high-ability, cognitively diverse students.
    • Apply strength-based, talent-focused curricular systems and strategies in classrooms and schools and use action research methodology to measure effectiveness of strategies

Certificate in Twice-Exceptional Education

  • 18-credit program
  • Designed to be completed in one year
  • Includes:
    • 12 credits taken online
    • A two-week residency program during which courses are taken at the Bridges Graduate School campus
    • A practicum


  • Individuals with a background in an education-related field who wish to augment/ enhance their understanding of students with gifts in specific areas and simultaneous cognitive, behavioral, or social challenges
  • Those who seek knowledge of and skills to do the following:
    • Advocate for twice-exceptional students
    • Modify instruction to meet their needs
    • Be on a team of professionals who desire to personalize approaches to meet the unique needs of these students

We plan to start the hybrid online synchronous and asynchronous classes as early as January, 2019, for those who are ready to begin. There will be a more formal official opening for the graduate school in the summer of 2019, with a doctoral residency experience starting in the fall of 2019.  

For more information,see https://graduateschool.bridges.edu.     

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