Children with advanced development require comprehensive diagnosis and early intervention in order to develop all of their capabilities. This is the primary purpose of the gifted evaluation. A gifted evaluation can verify cognitive strengths, assess academic achievement, and recommend specific strategies to meet a child’s needs at school. It can document the need for advanced work and less drill and practice.
In New Mexico a “gifted child” means a school-age person whose intellectual ability paired with subject matter aptitude/achievement, creativity/divergent thinking, or problem-solving/critical thinking meets the following eligibility criteria:
(1) “Intellectual ability” score two standard deviations above the mean as defined by the test author ona properly administered intelligence measure. The test administrator must also consider the standard error of measure (SEM) in the determination of whether or not criteria have been met in this area.
(2) “Subject matter aptitude/achievement” scores in the superior academic range on a total subject area score on a standardized measure,
(3) “Creativity/divergent thinking” scores that show outstanding performance on a test of creativity/ divergent thinking
(4) “Problem-solving/critical thinking” scores that show outstanding performance on a test of problem-solving/critical thinking.
Components of Gifted Testing
This evaluation includes either the Wechsler Intelligence Test V (WISC-V) or the Stanford Binet V, which will provide in-depth information on several factors of intelligence (such as factual knowledge, short-term memory, abstract reasoning, visual-spatial abilities, and quantitative reasoning).
It will also include the Wechsler Individual Achievement Test which will provide in-depth information on a child’s mastery of specific subjects and on academic strengths and weaknesses.
Creativity will be measured by the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking which measures creative thinking using three picture-based exercises to assess five mental characteristics: fluency, originality, elaboration, abstractness of titles, and resistance to closure.
Critical Thinking will be measured through the Cornell Critical Thinking Test. This test measures Induction, Deduction, Credibility, and Identification of Assumptions.The Structure of Intellect may also be used for critical thinking assessment.
Testing will meet the criteria established by the New Mexico Administrative Code;however, the Local Educational Agency Multidisciplinary Team has the authority to make the final decision regarding eligibility and need for specialized instruction.
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