chapter  28
17 Pages

Special Gifts and Talents

WithJonathan A. Plucker, Carolyn M. Callahan

The literature in gifted education, as in most fields, includes theory and model generative essays, research studies, and applied/advice pieces. Barab and Plucker proposed an integrated model of giftedness in which talents are developed through the interaction of the individual, environment, and sociocultural content. The theoretical base of the gifted education field has been largely a derivative of theories in psychology and sociology; more work can and should be done to develop an integrated theory tying together the foundations of the field. Gifted education is rife with advice for developing curriculum and instructional interventions to be used with gifted students. These models can be characterized as descriptive frameworks for implementation of curriculum or as prescriptive frameworks. Identification and creativity are examples of areas within the field that have traditionally been criticized for poor conceptualization, thin empirical bases, mixed evidence of effectiveness, but where recent publications indicate a number of researchers are doing promising work.