Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about giftedness

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How does counseling help with underachievement?

Considering that underachievement results from an interaction of several unfavorable factors and that difficulties can vary greatly from case to case, professional psychological counseling is recommended. In severe cases, collaboration between different types of support services may be necessary. At the very minimum, however, counseling intervention is usually required, involving not only the child in question, but also the child’s family and the school.

In many cases, underachievement is accompanied by severe emotional distress for children or adolescents, with impairments in their psychological well-being, self-image, and family interaction. Thus, it may be necessary to consult a professional counselor with psychotherapeutic qualifications. Both personal and family-related aspects of underachievement can then be addressed and positively influenced during counseling.

Involving the school is also important. Particularly in cases of prolonged underachievement, the performance problems may not only be due to motivational issues, but may also be due to genuine substantial deficits in the subject matter. (Re)establishing a good fit between the individual’s achievement potential and school support is therefore an important cornerstone and requires the intensive, long-term coordination of counseling and educational interventions at school. Support for schools in this process can be provided by the school psychology counseling services or specialized professional counseling centers.

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