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Optimal Development

The optimal development of gifted and talented students has been a focus for theory, research, and practice since Lewis M. Terman's longitudinal investigation of the nature of giftedness and Leta Hollingworth's exploration of the differential needs of gifted students highlighted the importance of the relationship between social and emotional well-being and effective learning and functioning. Their common focus was a holistic understanding of giftedness and the realization of potential that has engendered an enduring emphasis on aspects of self-development (self-actualization) and social responsibility (interdependence), as well as high-level performance (productive achievement). Theories of giftedness have increasingly acknowledged that the realization of the intellectual potential of gifted students depends in part on optimal educational interventions so that the motivation for learning, training, and practice is maintained ...

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