There are many theories and definitions of giftedness. However, most will agree on
some commonly observed behaviors--many of which are listed below. The current National Association of Gifted Children's
definition of giftedness is:
A gifted person is someone who shows, or has the potential for showing, an exceptional level
of performance in one or more areas of expression.
Some of these abilities are very general and can affect a broad spectrum of the person's life,
such as leadership skills or the ability to think creatively. Some are very specific talents and are only evident in particular
circumstances, such as a special aptitude in mathematics, science, or music. The term giftedness provides a general
reference to this spectrum of abilities without being specific or dependent on a single measure or index. It is generally
recognized that approximately five percent of the student population, or three million children, in the United States are
A person's giftedness should not be confused with the means by which giftedness is observed
or assessed. Parent, teacher, or student recommendations, a high mark on an examination, or a high IQ score are not giftedness;
they may be a signal that giftedness exists. Some of these indices of giftedness are more sensitive than others to differences
in the person's environment. (NAGC, 2008).