Exceptionally and Profoundly Gifted Children*
Dr. Karen Rogers
Associate Professor of Gifted Studies
University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota
Dr. Karen Rogers, a researcher of international renown, analyzed data at the Gifted Development Center in 1994-1995 during a postdoctoral fellowship. The analysis
consisted of data on 241 children between 2½ and 12½ years of age, with IQs ranging
from 160 to 237+ on the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale (Form L-M). Here are some
of the findings from that study:
The main reason parents requested testing (82%) was to obtain help with educational placement decisions.
There was no difference in the mean IQ for boys and girls.
Mothers tended to be older than the norm. The mean age at the time of the child’s birth was 30.8.
44% of the mothers report problems with delivery.
50% of the parents report that their child needed less sleep than others.
60% are "day people" (more boys than girls), 17.5% are night people (more girls than boys) and 22.5% of the parents wrote in "both" in answer to the question!
Development in Infancy and Toddlerhood
94% were very alert as infants.
94% had a long attention span as an infant or toddler.
91% showed early language development.
60% showed early motor skill development.
48.9% were ambidextrous at some period of their development.
37% had imaginary playmates.
The mean age at which these children spoke their first word was 9 months.
The mean age at which the children sight read an easy reader was before four.
85% of the children had had ear infections.
52% have high pain tolerance.
44% have allergies and 9.6% have asthma.
The most significant allergy mentioned was to milk (35% of the allergic children).
The next highest allergy mentioned was trees (8.2%).
99.4% learn rapidly
99.4% have extensive vocabulary
99.3% have excellent memory
99.3% reason well
97.9% are curious
96.1% are mature for their age at times
95.9% have an excellent sense of humor
93.8% have a keen sense of observation
93.5% have compassion for others
93.4% have a vivid imagination
93.4% have a long attention span
92.9% have ability with numbers
90.3% are concerned with justice and fairness
89.4% have facility with puzzles and legos
88.4% have a high energy level
88.3% are perfectionistic
85.9% are perseverant in their areas of interest
84.1% question authority
80.3% are avid readers
90% were described by their parents as "sensitive."
83% like to concentrate on one activity at a time.
79% report high energy or activity levels.
44% are sensitive to clothing tags and other tactile sensations.
In tests of self-concept, these children are significantly more confident in their academic abilities than in their social acceptance.
The greatest educational need expressed was for a more challenging curriculum.
How significant are these data? We won't know until we've been able to enter random samples from the moderate, mildly and non-gifted children's files.
* Personal, Social, Medical and Psychological Factors in 160+ IQ Children
Presented by Karen Rogers and Linda Silverman at the
National Association for Gifted Children 44th Annual Convention in
Little Rock, Arkansas, November 7, 1997.