Work with CTD

Create your own practicum in gifted education! CTD hires dynamic educators for a range of program staff and administrative positions in our online, weekend, and summer programs.

See our Job Opportunities page for current oppenings, job descriptions, and application procedures.


Meeting the Needs of High-Ability Students: Gifted Education Boot Camp

High-ability, or gifted, learners have educational needs that require educators and administrators to have specialized knowledge and skill sets. Unfortunately, most teacher preparation programs only offer a limited introduction to gifted education. For those new to gifted education or looking for the latest research and practices, CTD has developed a professional learning experience that provides the background and skills classroom teachers and administrators need to identify exceptional academic talent, provide appropriate instructional support, and help students achieve optimal growth. 

This 15-hour training is hosted at Northwestern University or can be offered locally for groups of educators from a particular school or district, making use of online, in-person, or hybrid approaches. 

Topics covered include the following:

  • Standards and best practices for working with high-ability learners
  • Effective identification of abilities and needs
  • Assessment and growth monitoring
  • Acceleration and enrichment
  • Grouping and differentiating instruction
  • Social-emotional needs and psychosocial skill development

ISBE Professional Development Hours are available. Boot Camp can be supplemented to earn graduate credit through the School of Education and Social Policy's MSEd program. Details are available below.

Fall Boot Camp Schedule: Wednesday, November 20 through Friday, November 22, 2019 at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. (Three in-person meetings. Participants need to attend all three in-person days, which run 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. the first two days, and 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on the last day order to receive the full 15 hours of Professional Development.)

Instructors: Eric Calvert, CTD Associate Director; Susan Corwith, CTD Associate Director; Rhoda Rosen, CTD Associate Director; Melissa Hinshaw, CTD Assessment Coordinator; Randee Blair, CTD Project Coordinator, School Services

Cost: $495 per person; $395 per person for groups of 3 or more registered from the same school or district; $395 for current CTD instructors; $395 for current SESP students

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Graduate Credit Option through Northwestern’s MSEd Program: Graduate credit is available for Boot Camp with payment of the graduate credit tuition, 15 additional hours of online instruction, and completion of a project. To apply for a graduate credit Boot Camp session, contact us at for information.

Questions about Boot Camp? Contact us at or 847/467-0615 with questions about the Boot Camp or to discuss a proposal for services.

Annual Conferences for Educators and Administrators

CTD’s conferences offer teachers and administrators best practices in gifted education and demonstrate how to apply the practices in classroom and whole-school settings to create an optimal learning environment for all students. Conferences are typically held each fall and spring.

Fall 2019 Conferences

The Critical Role of Psychosocial Skills in Talent Development and High Achievement

Thursday, October 24, 2019, 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m., Northwestern University's Evanston, Illinois Campus

How can educators help young people acquire the skills necessary to fully develop their talent, including setting goals, managing their motivation, embracing challenge, and controlling anxiety? How can they design their classrooms and work with gifted students to actively cultivate social and psychological skills that will support high achievement?  In this session, Paula Olszewski-Kubilius, Director of the Center for Talent Development, will present key psychological principles of learning and motivation and how they apply specifically to high ability and high potential students, including resources for fostering motivation and other key psychosocial skills.

Fee: $120/participant; $95/participant when registering 5 or more individuals from the same district/school; $95 for current CTD instructors or SESP students

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Understanding and Using Your Data to Inform Instruction for Advanced Learners

Friday, October 25, 2019, 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m., Northwestern University's Evanston, Illinois campus

Schools collect a lot of data but using that data to its fullest to inform instruction and guide programming decisions takes knowledge, skill, and training. Join CTD’s Assessment Coordinator, Melissa Hinshaw, for a workshop that will help you interpret and utilize your assessment data more effectively to identify and meet the needs of your advanced learners. Additionally, learn how above-grade-level assessments can complement and extend your knowledge of your advanced learners and plan for long-term growth. 

Fee: $120/participant; $95/participant when registering 5 or more individuals from the same district/school; $95 for current CTD instructors or SESP students

Register with Credit Card

Register with Purchase Order

Customized Professional Development Workshops

Work with CTD to design professional development offerings that meet the needs of educators in your school or district. CTD can provide

  • Convenient, asynchronous online minicourses on topics including, but not limited to, identification best practices, social-emotional needs, or differentiation
  • Customizable one- or two-day workshops at your site
  • Hybrid offerings (online and face-to-face)
  • Opportunities to work in CTD summer, online and weekend programs, providing on-the-job skills and experience

Contact us at or 847/467-0615 to discuss a proposal for services.

Participation at Special Events

To better serve the gifted population and share resources and information with a wider audience, CTD staff attend many state gifted conferences, state award ceremonies, educational fairs, parent meetings and national educational conferences. Please check the CTD calendar for upcoming events. If you know of an event that CTD should consider attending, please e-mail


CTD's Civic Education Project professional staff provide training for educators, youth development professionals, and other practitioners on service-learning, social justice education, and youth development.

Sample workshops & trainings include:

  • Service-Learning 101: Infusing Service with Learning (Part 1), Curriculum Design & Implementation (Part 2)
  • Navigating Difficult Conversations in the Classroom: Facilitation Skills for Critical Inquiry
  • Teaching Leadership
  • Asset-Based Community Development in Service-Learning
  • Developing & Assessing Non-Cognitive Skills

CEP workshop & training participants receive:

  • Tiered and differentiated instruction that meets participants at their current level of expertise, and provides a level of challenge within personal and professional goals
  • Best practices within the topic area, combined with strategies for purposeful facilitation and curriculum design
  • Meaningful takeaways for immediate application in the classroom

Workshop rates start at $600 per 90-minute workshop; discounts may be available for multiple sessions. Contact CEP at or 847-467-2572 for complete workshop descriptions and pricing inquiries.


CTD publishes a monthly e-mail digest for school personnel. Each email includes updates on professional learning opportunities, news about CTD programs and events, and articles and links about best practices or hot topics in the field if gifted education.

To subscribe to the monthly digest, complete the online subscription form. Digests are sent around the 15th of each month.

Copyright 2014 Northwestern University Center for Talent Development