ERIC Number: ED322209
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980
Three Thousand Years of Talent Searching.
Wing, Cliff W., Jr.
An overview is presented of current issues in the assessment of gifted and talented persons, with an emphasis on generalizable and universal talents and the operational methods used in their identification. The Chinese were seeking out talented individuals through formal identification procedures as early as 2200 BC. In the Western world, the use of tests to explore human competencies, outside of educational institutions, is only a little over 100 years old, with beginnings in the work of Sir Francis Galton. The identification and recognition of talent in this country continue to operate through two parallel systems, within the formal educational processes and within the worlds of business, political, and cultural affairs. Talent recognized in one system is not highly predictive of talent recognized in the other. Education decision makers tend to believe that they are reaching for a variety of talents when they select the gifted and talented, but their selections are largely based on grades and scores, a fact that may explain why those they identify as gifted do not show up with consistency among those identified as talented by the larger society. From the ancient Chinese, we can learn to work toward developing talent identification systems that relate to all the areas of talent that are represented at the top of society. It is not that testing is bad as a means of identifying talents, but simply that it is too narrow. (SLD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association of Schools of Music (55th, Philadelphia, PA, November 1989).