01 Sep Giftedness as a Cluster Concept – a Dynamic Model for Policy, Research and Practice
Giftedness as a Cluster Concept – a Dynamic Model for Policy, Research and Practice
Paper presentation187Caroline Sims, Uppsala University; University of Gavle, Sweden
Everest 1Thu 10:45 - 12:15
Balanced research and practice
In research, it is common to define giftedness in terms of necessary and sufficient conditions – a ‘classical definition’ (Andersen 2002). In practice, such definitions are problematic because they are either too narrow, too wide, and involve an arbitrary cut-off. In two research reviews covering a total of 135 articles, the majority based their samples on IQ or high performance. In the whole review no less than 70 criteria for giftedness were identified.An alternative strategy is to treat giftedness as a cluster concept consisting of ten loosely connected categories. Empirical applications of this conceptualisation are presented covering both policy documents and teaching practices (Ball 1993). Establishing a new tradition through the use of a dynamic model of this kind has the potential to impact policy, research, and practice offering a way to include students who are gifted but not necessarily high achieving on standardised testing or IQ measures.