ERIC Number: ED305787
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Aug-13
Reference Count: N/A
Programming for Giftedness: Reexamining the Paradigm.
Treffinger, Donald J.
The central premise underlying gifted education is that gifted students can and should be distinguished or differentiated from the larger, non-gifted population, and once identified, should receive specialized services. This paradigm is strongly rooted in the psychometric tradition and draws upon the "medical model" by defining characteristics or "symptoms" of giftedness and developing quantitative indices to precisely identify those students with that "condition." The current paradigm is inadequate in three areas: (1) dimensions of ability are not fixed and predetermined in any person over time and circumstances, and cannot be predicted comprehensively by traditional intelligence tests; (2) identification practices are arbitrary and contrived; and (3) a single, fixed program is provided for gifted students, relying on a resource room model and thus not offering opportunities for all students to learn and apply powerful learning and thinking tools. The traditional paradigm needs to give way to a broader, dynamic, growth-oriented view of the nature of giftedness. Identification should become more flexible, inclusive, and instruction-oriented. Schools should consider a broad range of instructional responses, designed to challenge all students to a greater degree. Implications of the new paradigm for research are outlined. (JDD)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (96th, Atlanta, GA, August 13, 1988).