Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

First Advisor

F. Neil Mathews


The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of using nontraditional referral and screening procedures to identify culturally different (minority) gifted children. The extreme disparity of representative frequencies of these groups within gifted programs nationally and in Louisiana prompted research in four parishes (counties) to compare nontraditional with traditional identification procedures. The nontraditional referral procedures included child search methods and parent and teacher training about the characteristics of giftedness among culturally different populations. Nontraditional screening procedures included the use of creativity and leadership checklists, analysis of achievement in all academic areas, and the use of the Matrix Analogies Test-Short Form (MAT-SF) as an intelligence measure. Chi-square tests of association and qualitative analyses were used to analyze data. Among the referral sample (N = 276) of students in grades 1-5, larger numbers of minorities were referred and screened using nontraditional methods. A significant difference was found (p $<$.001) in the proportion of minorities ultimately identified as gifted. Final eligibility for program placement was based on achievement tests and intelligence tests. A significant difference (p $<$.05) was found between teacher and parent ratings on the creativity checklist. In the qualitative analysis of parent/teacher narrative comments on the Creativity and Leadership Checklists (n = 17), parents named significantly more indicators of creativity than did teachers. Similarities were found in parents' and teachers' observations of students concerning creativity and leadership behaviors. Using qualitative analysis, three categorical patterns in leadership and creativity indicators were identified: cognitive, affective and behavioral. Further research should investigate specific nontraditional assessment procedures that include measures to determine cultural characteristics of minority gifted children. Particular attention should be given to the areas of creativity and leadership as a part of the total assessment process. Additionally, such research should attempt to determine the effectiveness of the assessment procedures to provide a description of the child's abilities socially, creatively, academically and intellectually.