Conceptions of Giftedness: Sociocultural Perspectives

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Shane N. Phillipson, Maria McCann
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2007 - Education - 511 pages
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The effective education of gifted children is one of the most significant challenges facing educational systems in many countries around the world, made particularly difficult by the forces of globalization. Conceptions of Giftedness describes the unique and varied ways cultures conceive of giftedness. As language influences perception, different ideas of giftedness may embody different ways of thinking, especially in the areas of creativity and problem solving. This important new volume in special education encourages the understanding, appreciation, and preservation of our “intellectual diversity.”
Contributing authors to this book are authorities in the field of gifted education, and represent a range of languages and cultures, including Western, Chinese, Japanese, Australian Aboriginal and Malay cultures. Each chapter describes giftedness from one cultural perspective within the global context, resulting in both local and global educational implications.
Conceptions of Giftedness appeals to an international audience, and will serve as a primary and/or secondary resource for scholars, teachers, and undergraduate and postgraduate students interested in gifted education. Its distinctive universal perspective will attract sociolinguists and anthropologists, as well as educators.

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About the author (2007)

Shane N. Phillipson was a Mathematics and Science teacher for many years before obtaining his Ph.D. in gifted education from Flinders University in South Australia. His Ph.D. thesis won the International Award (1999-2000) for best thesis by the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) in the UK. Before taking his current appointment, he was a lecturer in gifted education at The University of New England, Australia. Today, he teaches educational psychology and gifted education in Hong Kong and his research interests include educational psychology in cross-cultural contexts, creativity and mathematical thinking, particularly for high ability students. His current research project is an application of modern measurment theory and seeks to identify patterns of achievement in Mathematics in Hong Kong primary and secondary students.
Maria Therese McCann obtained her Ph.D. in Gifted Education from The University of Adelaide, and she is the Co-ordinator of all graduate programs in Gifted Education at Flinders University of South Australia. She holds very senior positions on national and international bodies and is recognized as an expert in the fields of the design of enrichment programs and identifying giftedness, particularly through creativity, visual thinking ability and its links with IQ. Maria was granted an $80,000 Telstra Foundation Award (2004 – 2006) to survey provisions for gifted students in Australia and to design creativity/visual thinking identification and profiling instruments suitable for students from a range of social and cultural groups. Nationally, Maria has served as the President of the Australian Association for the Education of the Gifted and Talented and has also served as the President of the Asia-Pacific Federation of the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children. In 2005 she was elected to the position of Vice-President of the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children. Since August 2005, Maria has been the Editor of the World Council journal, Gifted and Talented International.

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