According to the New Jersey
Administrative Code, gifted and talented students are defined as "those
students who possess or demonstrate high levels of ability, in one or more
content areas, when compared to their chronological peers in the local school
district and who require modifications of their educational program if they are
to achieve in accordance with their capabilities."
6A:8-1.3 & 6A:8-3.1
Research on creative-productive people has
consistently shown that although no single criterion can be used to determine
giftedness, persons who have achieved recognition because of their unique accomplishments
and creative contributions possess a relatively well-defined set of three
inter-locking clusters of traits.These clusters consist of above average, though not necessarily
superior, ability, task commitment, and creativity (see Figure A).It is important to point out that no
single cluster "makes giftedness."Rather, it is the interaction among the three clusters that research has
shown to be the necessary ingredient for creative-productive accomplishment.The shaded portion of Figure A represents
this interaction.It is also
important to point out that each cluster plays an important role in
contributing to the display of gifted behaviors.
following list further describes the characteristics of each of the three
High levels of
abstract thinking, verbal and numerical reasoning, spatial relations, memory,
and word fluency.
the shaping of novel situations encountered in the external environment.
automatization of information processing; rapid accurate, and selective
retrieval of information.
of various combinations of the above abilities to one or more specialized areas
of knowledge or areas of human performance (e.g., the arts, leadership,
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.
The capacity to
sort out relevant and irrelevant information associated with a particular
problem or areas of study or performance.
The capacity for
high levels of interest, enthusiasm, fascination, and involvement in a particular
problem, area of study, or form of human expression.
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, drive to achieve.
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.
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.
flexibility, and originality of thought.
experience; receptive to that which is new and different (even irrational) in
thoughts, actions, and products of oneself and others.
speculative, adventurous, and "mentally playful" willing to take
risks in thought and action, even to the point of being uninhibited.
to detail, aesthetic characteristics of ideas and things; willing to
act on and react to external stimulation and one's own ideas and