Despite the fact that our society prizes gifted children, research on their special talents is underfunded compared with other areas of education and suffers from a number of methodological challenges. These challenges include (but are not limited to) the fact that definitions of giftedness are not standardized; that test ceilings are often too low to measure progress or growth; that comparison groups for exceptional individuals are often difficult to find; and that participant attrition in longitudinal studies involving special populations can compromise the validity of findings more severely than in studies with more general populations. Fortunately, the editors of this book make a strong case that these methodological issues can be overcome.
Bruce Thompson and Rena F. Subotnik have gathered a distinguished group of pioneers in measurement and statistics to offer creative solutions to these problems and more.
Chapters in Parts I and II describe the use of methods such as factor analysis, Q-technique factor analysis, reliability generalization methods, and hierarchical linear modeling in the study of giftedness; debates over statistical significance and the utility of p values and confidence intervals are covered as well.
Chapters in the final part of the book include contributions by leading journal editors in the field of gifted education who examine the implications of the various insights in earlier chapters upon their work as researchers and leaders in the field.
This book is a must-have for all researchers who seek to elevate the scholarship on giftedness and talent development to a new level of rigor.