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Gifted and Talented


Arkansas’ Definition of Giftedness

Gifted and Talented children and youth are those of high potential or ability, whose learning characteristics and educational needs require qualitatively differentiated educational experiences and/or services.  Possession of these talents and gifts, or the potential for their development, will be evidenced through an interaction of above average intellectual ability, task commitment and/or motivation, and creative ability.

General ability

Ø  High levels of abstract thinking, verbal and numerical reasoning, spatial relations, memory, and word fluency.

Ø  Adaptation to the shaping of novel situations encountered in the external environment.

Ø  The automatization of information processing; rapid accurate, and selective retrieval of information.


Specific Ability

Ø  The application of various combinations of the above general abilities to one or more specialized areas of knowledge or areas of human performance (e.g., the arts, leadership, administration).

Ø  The capacity for acquiring and making appropriate use of advanced amounts of formal knowledge, tacit knowledge, technique, logistics, and strategy in the pursuit of particular problems or the manifestation of specialized areas of performance.

Ø  The capacity to sort out relevant and irrelevant information associated with a particular problem or areas of study or performance.


Task Commitment

Ø  The capacity for high levels of interest, enthusiasm, fascination, and involvement in a particular problem, area of study, or form of human expression.

Ø  The capacity for perseverance, endurance, determination, hard work, and dedicated practice. Self-confidence, a strong ego and a belief in one's ability to carry out important work, freedom from inferiority feelings, and drive to achieve.

Ø  The ability to identify significant problems within specialized reason; the ability to tune in to major channels of communication and new developments within given fields. 

Ø  Setting high standards for one's work; maintaining an openness to self and external criticism; developing an aesthetic sense of taste, quality, and excellence about one's own work and the work of others.



Ø  Fluency, flexibility, and originality of thought.

Ø  Openness to experience; receptive to that which is new and different (even irrational) in thoughts, actions, and products of oneself and others.

Ø  Curious, speculative, adventurous, and "mentally playful" willing to take risks in thought and action, even to the point of being uninhibited.

Ø  Sensitive to detail, aesthetic characteristics of ideas and things; willing to act on and react to external stimulation and one's own ideas and feelings.