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Dabrowski's Theory of Positive Disintegration and Giftedness: Overexcitability Research Findings

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Abstract

During the past 20 years, a significant body of literature has emerged focusing on the application ofDabrowski's theory ofpositive disintegration (TPD) to the study ofgifted individuals. Although much of this literature is prescriptive, some research reports spanning this time period are available. A perusal of research on TPD's appli- cability to gifted individuals indicates that the focus has been Dabrowski's notion of overexcitability (OE). This article reviews OE research, contrasts it with Dabrowski's approach to research with gifted individuals, and argues that researchers should emu-

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... That is the reason why they are often referred to as the Big Three (cf. Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Dąbrowski (1979a) suggested that "sensual and psychomotor OEs are developmentally lower, and emotional, intellectual and imaginational OEs are higher. ...
... This particularly applies to intellectual, imaginational, and emotional OEs, often referred to as the Big Three (cf. Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006), observed in the first group (Harrison & Van Haneghan, 2011;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Piechowski et al., 1985). Sometimes, differences are revealed only in intellectual and imaginational OEs (Yakmaci-Guzel & Akarsu, 2006), intellectual and emotional OEs (Bouchet & Falk, 2001;Miller et al., 1994), or intellectual OE ( Van den Broeck et al., 2014;. ...
... This particularly applies to intellectual, imaginational, and emotional OEs, often referred to as the Big Three (cf. Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006), observed in the first group (Harrison & Van Haneghan, 2011;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Piechowski et al., 1985). Sometimes, differences are revealed only in intellectual and imaginational OEs (Yakmaci-Guzel & Akarsu, 2006), intellectual and emotional OEs (Bouchet & Falk, 2001;Miller et al., 1994), or intellectual OE ( Van den Broeck et al., 2014;. ...
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Overexcitability (OE) is a key concept introduced in the literature by Kazimierz Dąbrowski who distinguished 5 forms of OE (psychomotor, sensual, imaginational, intellectual, and emotional) and showed that they are correlated with outstanding talents and creativity. In this study a group of musically talented individuals (n = 106) was compared with a control group (n = 106). OEQ-II was used to measure OE. Female musicians scored significantly higher in sensual, imaginational, and intellectual OEs compared to the women from the control group, while male musicians scored significantly higher in sensual and emotional OEs and lower in psychomotor OE compared to the men from the control group. In addition, the musicians and non-musicians were compared with the sten norms for OEQ-II. It was found that the number of individuals showing high emotional and high sensual OEs was more than twice as high in the group of musicians than in the control group.
... Tanto las sobreexcitabilidades como la alta sensibilidad en el procesamiento sensorial describen peculiaridades del sistema nervioso de origen constitucional (Homberg, Schubert, Asan y Aron, 2016;Mendaglio, 2012) que afectan al procesa-miento de estímulos tanto internos como externos (Greven et al., 2019;Mendaglio y Tillier, 2006), si bien la descripción de las sobreexcitabilidades enfatiza más la respuesta resultante (en las áreas psicomotriz, sensual, intelectual, imaginativa y emocional) mientras que la alta sensibilidad enfatiza más los procesos internos: una mayor conciencia de sutilezas ambientales, facilidad para la sobrecarga por exceso de estimulación, mayor profundidad en el procesamiento de información sensorial y mayor reactividad emocional y empatía (Aron, Aron, y Jagiellowicz, 2012). Además, el concepto de sobreexcitabilidades se asocia a la Teoría de la Desintegración Positiva de Dabrowski, en el contexto del estudio de las altas capacidades, mientras que la alta sensibilidad en el procesamiento sensorial se aplica a población general, aunque sus autores apuntan desde su propuesta inicial a que las altas capacidades podrían asociarse a alta sensibilidad. ...
... A nivel empírico, se ha confirmado la relación entre altas capacidades y sobreexcitabilidades especialmente cuando se utiliza la creatividad artística como criterio para detectar las altas capacidades (Mendaglio y Tillier, 2006;Mendaglio, Kettler y Rinn, 2019). Además a nivel de medida las sobreexcitabilidades se solapan con cinco de las facetas del factor apertura a la experiencia (modelo de los cinco grandes), que a su vez se relaciona también con creatividad e inteligencia tanto en población general como con altas capacidades (Vuyk, Krieshok y Kerr, 2016). ...
Article
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En este artículo, se revisa la relación entre altas capacidades y trastornos alimentarios, explorando los factores que pueden explicar su conexión: asincronías, sensibilidad y perfeccionismo. Profundizando en los procesos por los que pueden dar lugar a la psicopatología, se concluye que es la interacción con un medio poco preparado para responder a las necesidades del menor lo que las convierte en variables de vulnerabilidad y que podrían orientarse de una forma constructiva previniendo ese efecto. La atención a aspectos socioafectivos en el desarrollo, el fomento y valoración de la creatividad y la creación de contextos educativos estimulantes en los que el proceso de aprendizaje sea más importante que un determinado resultado podría impactar de forma positiva en la prevención de los trastornos alimentarios.
... They also face unique social and emotional challenges different from their same-aged peers. For example, some gifted children experience social stigmatization from being labeled gifted (Coleman, 1985;Neihart, 2002;Swiatek, 1998), unhealthy perfectionism (Christopher & Shewmaker, 2010;Silverman, 2007), and hyper-sensitivities or intensities (Dabrowski, 1964;Daniels & Piechowski, 2009a; see Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Intensity, also referred to as overexcitability, is a characteristic commonly found among gifted individuals that describes hypersensitive or prolonged responses to stimuli (Dabrowski, 1964). ...
... For Dabrowski, TPD was a unique approach to human development among individuals who have high developmental potential (Bailey, 2011;Dabrowski, 1964). Dabrowski saw how an individual's inner forces (e.g., intensities) often generated overstimulation, conflict, and paina breakdown or disintegration of oneself (Daniels & Piechowski, 2009a;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Yet, the same inner forces that caused strife also provoked them to search for a way through pain, strife, and disharmony (Daniels & Piechowski, 2009b)a positive approach to disintegration. ...
Article
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Due to asynchronous development, gifted children often experience the world differently than their same-aged peers. Some experience unique intensities, or overexcitabilities, that render modifications in teaching and parenting. These intensities typically take on characteristics of emotional, intellectual, imagination, psychomotor, or sensual overexcitability. In this in-depth interview study, I explored parent perceptions of intensity in their gifted adolescent children. Three mothers participated and completed the Overexcitability Inventory for Parents-Two (OIP-II) prior to each interview. The parent responses to the OIP-II served as an elicitation device to begin our conversations. Thematic analysis revealed three main themes among the participants’ perceptions: (1) challenging behaviors of intense gifted children, (2) consequences of intensity, and (3) a parent’s search for understanding. These findings inform the understanding of intensity and overexcitability from parents’ points of view and provide insight into how intense gifted children behave outside of the classroom. I conclude the article with questions to consider regarding how to better support parents of young gifted children.
... Research has indicated partial support that more OEs are prevalent in the gifted rather than in non-identified or nongifted learners (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Bouchard (2004), for example, developed an OE Likert-scaled observation checklist designed for use by teachers to identify OEs in gifted elementary students. ...
... No significant correlation was found between Emotional OE and ADHD characteristics. Individuals with Emotional OE display noticeable and familiar expressions such as anxieties, fears, and feelings of guilt (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). A student displaying ADHD characteristics might have difficulty making and keeping friends or might have their feelings easily hurt. ...
Article
There is no empirical evidence in Jordan that addresses the overlap and coexistence of overexcitability (OE) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in gifted students. This study aims to investigate (a) the relationship between characteristics of OE forms and ADHD subtypes and (b) the gender differences in OE profiles among gifted students in Jordan. The participants included 265 gifted adolescents from the Jubilee Institute. They were administered the Jordanian version of the Overexcitability Questionnaire-Two (OEQII) and the Conners ADHD/DSM-V Scales-Adolescent scale. The Canonical Correlation Analysis (CCA) revealed a noteworthy collective relationship between OE and ADHD constructs, and another noteworthy relationship in relation to the gender of gifted adolescents. The findings also revealed small, significant positive correlations between (a) Psychomotor OE and hyperactive-impulsive ADHD, (b) Imaginational OE and ADHD subtypes, and (c) a small significant negative correlation between Intellectual OE and inattentive ADHD scores. Additionally, there was a significant gender difference in the Psychomotor OE in favor of boys and significant differences in the Emotional, Sensual, and Imaginational OEs in favor of girls. No significant gender differences were found in the Intellectual OEs of the participants.
... dimensi intelektual merupakan dimensi yang tertinggi bagi sampel pintar dan berbakat ini dan dikuti oleh sensori, imaginasi, emosi dan psikomotor. Dapatan dimensi merupakan skor min yang tertinggi ini selaras dengan kajian (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Namun dapatan ini berbeza di dalam kajian Chang & Kuo (2013), dapatan kajian beliau di Taiwan mendapati skor min yang tertinggi adalah dimensi emosi. ...
... Hal ini telah diakui oleh individu, guru, staf dan ibu bapa. PPB mempunyai sifat sensitiviti yang melampau, mempunyai perlakuan hiperaktif, mempunyai perasaan ingin tahu yang mendalam serta suka berangan-angan (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Rumusannya di sini KLB mampu memberikan kesan positif dan negatif terhadap pelajar pintar dan berbakat. ...
Article
Overexcitabilities is a special trait in gifted and talented students but is rarely known to the general public. This overexcitabilities is one of the socioemotional issues faced by gifted and talented students. The concept of overexcitedness has come to be known in the field gifted and talented and has a great impact on the self-development and future of the students. A survey was conducted using the Overexcitability Survey (II) instrument to measure the overexcitabilities of these gifted and talented students. Previous researchers agree that the Overexcitability Survey (II) is also suitable to be used in identifying gifted and talented individuals. The Overexcitability Survey (II) has five sub constructs: emotional dimension, imagination, intellectual, psychomotor and sensory. The findings of the study among high school students (n = 40) in gifted and talented schools in Negeri Sembilan showed that gifted and talented students had the highest score for intellectual constructs (mean = 3.54) and followed by sensory (mean = 3.51), imagination (mean = 3.45), emotion (mean = 3.40) and psychomotor (mean = 3.40). This study also goes through the Positive Disintegration Theory by Dabrowski that gifted and talented students are able to excel and strive to overcome their weaknesses in order to succeed if they are able to adapt to the uniqueness of the over excitabilities. The knowledge of this over excitabilities is necessary to help the excellence of gifted and talented students. ABSTRAK Keterujaan luar biasa merupakan satu keistimewaan yang ada pada pelajar pintar dan berbakat namun jarang diketahui oleh masyarakat umum. Keterujaan luar biasa ini merupakan salah satu isu sosioemosi yang dihadapi oleh pelajar pintar berbakat. Konsep keterujaan luar biasa ini mula dikenali di dalam bidang pintar dan berbakat dan memberikan impak yang besar dalam perkembangan diri serta masa depan pelajar. Kajian tinjauan telah dilakukan menggunakan instrumen Soal Selidik Keterujan Luar Biasa (II) bagi mengukur keterujaan luar biasa pelajar pintar dan berbakat ini. Pengkaji-pengkaji yang lepas bersetuju bahawa Soal Selidik Keterujan Luar Biasa (II) ini juga sesuai untuk digunakan bagi mengenal pasti individu pintar dan berbakat. Soal Selidik Keterujan Luar Biasa (II) mempunyai lima sub konstruk iaitu dimensi emosi, imaginasi, intelektual, psikomotor dan sensori. Hasil dapatan kajian dalam kalangan pelajar sekolah menengah (n=40) di sekolah pintar dan berbakat di Negeri Sembilan ini menunjukkan pelajar pintar dan berbakat mendapat skor tertinggi yang signifikan bagi sub konstruk intelektual iaitu (min=3.54) dan diikuti sensori (min=3.51), imaginasi (min=3.45), emosi (min=3.40) dan psikomotor (min=3.40). Kajian ini juga melalui Teori Disintegrasi Positif oleh Dabrowski menunjukkan pelajar pintar dan berbakat mampu melonjak cemerlang dan berusaha mengatasi kelemahan diri untuk berjaya jika mereka mampu menyesuaikan diri dengan keunikan keterujaan luar biasa yang dianugerahkan. Pengetahuan tentang keterujaan luar biasa ini perlu bagi membantu kecemerlangan pelajar pintar dan berbakat.
... I incorporate evidence from a variety of sources for three reasons: (a) life purpose is relatively new to the giftedness literature, and I do not want to eliminate possibilities too quickly, (b) several controversial giftedness theories involve integration (e.g., profiles; Moran & Gardner, 2006a), person-environment interactions (e.g., crystallizing experiences, boosters or triggers; Seider, 2007;Seider et al., 2009), and dynamic development (e.g., qualitative change in form or composition; Bailey, 2011;Dabrowski & Piechowski, 1977) that are often not easily assessed psychometrically (Bordei, 2017;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006) although several researchers still pursue psychometric approaches (e.g., Armstrong, 2017;Bailey, 2011;Falk et al., 1999;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Shearer, 2013), and (c) my argument aims to generate interest in devising better research methods as well as pedagogical insights. ...
... I incorporate evidence from a variety of sources for three reasons: (a) life purpose is relatively new to the giftedness literature, and I do not want to eliminate possibilities too quickly, (b) several controversial giftedness theories involve integration (e.g., profiles; Moran & Gardner, 2006a), person-environment interactions (e.g., crystallizing experiences, boosters or triggers; Seider, 2007;Seider et al., 2009), and dynamic development (e.g., qualitative change in form or composition; Bailey, 2011;Dabrowski & Piechowski, 1977) that are often not easily assessed psychometrically (Bordei, 2017;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006) although several researchers still pursue psychometric approaches (e.g., Armstrong, 2017;Bailey, 2011;Falk et al., 1999;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Shearer, 2013), and (c) my argument aims to generate interest in devising better research methods as well as pedagogical insights. ...
Article
Rather than considering human potential in terms of an unrealized desired state, what if we framed it as gaining momentum in worthy long-term pursuits? This conceptual article, integrating ideas and findings from several scholarly literatures, explores how life purpose can serve as a meaningful, intentional guide for individuals, especially youth, to direct their other potentials into prosocial contributions to society. The argument (a) considers life purpose itself as a form of intrapersonal giftedness different from academic giftedness; (b) describes how life purpose could include distinctions of further potentials: coherence among purpose dimensions, influence on different life domains, reach of others impacted by the youths’ contributions, emphasis to change society, and precocious emergence of purpose’s dimensions and distinctions; and (c) muses how life purpose’s directing of other potentials might become a potential that could be realized by all youth.
... OEQ-II has been applied in many studies, mostly concerning differences in overexcitability between (intellectually or artistically) gifted people and those with average abilities. In most of these studies, higher levels of intellectual, imaginational and emotional OE were found in gifted people (Harrison, Van Haneghan, 2011;Limont et al., 2014;Mendaglio, Tillier, 2006;Piechowski, Silverman & Falk, 1985). These types of OE are sometimes referred to as the Big Three (cf. ...
... These types of OE are sometimes referred to as the Big Three (cf. Mendaglio, Tillier, 2006). In some studies, differences were found in terms of intellectual and imaginational OE (Yakmaci-Guzel, Akarsu, 2006), intellectual and emotional OE (Bouchet, Falk, 2001;Miller, Silverman & Falk, 1994), and sometimes just intellectual OE (Van den Broeck, Hofmans, Cooremans & Staels, 2013;Wirthwein, Rost, 2011). ...
... These differences have been generally observed. Sometimes differences have been observed for all forms of OE (Ackerman, 1997;; however, they have most often been revealed for intellectual, imaginational, and emotional OE (Harrison & Van Haneghan, 2011;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;, often referred to as the Big Three (cf. Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). ...
... Sometimes differences have been observed for all forms of OE (Ackerman, 1997;; however, they have most often been revealed for intellectual, imaginational, and emotional OE (Harrison & Van Haneghan, 2011;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;, often referred to as the Big Three (cf. Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Sometimes, differences are revealed in only intellectual and imaginational OEs (Yakmaci-Guzel & Akarsu, 2006), intellectual and emotional OEs (Bouchet & Falk, 2001;Miller, Silverman, & Falk, 1995), or intellectual OE (Van den Broeck, Hofmans, Cooremans, & Staels, 2014; Wirthwein & Rost, 2011). ...
Article
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Overexcitability (OE) is a key term used in the theory of positive disintegration by Kazimierz Dąbrowski (1964). The author distinguished 5 types of OE (psychomotor, sensual, imaginational, intellectual, and emotional) and showed that they are correlated with outstanding talents and creativity. Dąbrowski (1964) believed that OE may be responsible for emotional imbalance, adaptation difficulties, and mental disorders in some artistically and intellectually gifted individuals. The aim of this study was to explore whether there are any differences in OE between artistically talented individuals (here, actors; n = 40) and the control group ( n = 30). The Overexcitability Questionnaire–II (OEQ-II) was used to measure OE. We found differences in OE between the study groups: Actors scored significantly higher on sensual, imaginational, emotional, and psychomotor OEs compared to the control group. Because the previous study (Thomson & Jaque, 2016) has shown that emotional and imaginational OEs significantly predicted shame, anxiety, and depression, the actors’ results ( n = 40) were compared with the sten norms (Standard Ten) for OEQ-II, developed in a normalizing study ( n = 784), for these 2 types of OE. It was found that actors scored significantly higher than did the general population.
... From a conceptual perspective, TPD is a theory of personality development (Ackerman, 2009;Chia & Lim, 2017;Oliveira & Barbosa, 2015), which emphasizes the emotional and moral aspects of development (Chia & Lim, 2017;Piechowski, 2014Piechowski, , 2017. Even though it has not been designed to specifically explain the development of talented individuals (Delallo, 2017;Rinn & Reynolds, 2012), since 1979, it has been used to understand various aspects of giftedness, particularly the socio-emotional domain, permitting a broader understanding of the characteristics of the gifted, assisting in the process of potential identification and development (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Oliveira & Santos, 2015). According to Delallo (2017), the key concept of TPD is the conception of overexcitabilities, intensities that are associated with a different way of experiencing life (Piechowski, 2015). ...
... Psychomotor overexcitability manifests itself as an organic excess of energy and as expressions of emotional tensions arising from the excessive sensitivity of the neuromuscular system, although it should not be associated only with physical dexterity or athletic ability (Ackerman, 2009;Mofield & Peters, 2015), although this type of overexcitability is more often related to sports activities and artistic expressions that require physical ability, such as dance (Piechowski, 1975;Thomson & Jaque, 2016). Sensual overexcitability involves intensified sensual experiences as a way to relieve tensions and inner conflicts (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Mofield & Peters, 2015). Intellectual overexcitability is characterized by a great need for knowledge and problem solving (Miller, Falk, & Huang, 2009;Rinn & Reynolds, 2012). ...
Article
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The aim of this study was to compare gifted, with academic and artistic talent, and non-gifted students regarding overexcitability, as well as to investigate the perceptions of teachers from a specialized educational program for the gifted about their students’ emotional development. The study included 150 students and six teachers. As instruments, we used participants characterization questionnaires, an overexcitability scale and a semi-structured interview script. Data were analyzed using inferential statistics and content analysis. The results indicated significant differences between gifted and non-gifted students in the patterns of intellectual and imaginative over-excitability, as well as a tendency for teachers to emotionally characterize gifted students with an emphasis on psychological disorders and weaknesses. To invest in educational strategies that use information derived from overexcitability patterns as facilitating tools for the learning process of the gifted can contribute to increasing student engagement at school, keeping them motivated.
... This theory assumes two links: one between early intellectual advancement and overexcitability, and the other connecting overexcitability to psychological disorders. Overexcitability refers to intense sensory experience of stimuli, hypothesized to be caused by the increased sensitivity of neurons (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Dąbrowski differentiated five types of overexcitability: psychomotor, sensual, intellectual, imaginational and emotional. ...
... To date, a multitude of studies have reported an increased prevalence of depressive disorder (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Francis et al., 2016;Messier & Ward, 1998) as well as anxiety (Kermarrec, Attinger, Guignard, & Tordjman, 2020) in gifted individuals. Moreover, Karpinski et al. (2017) found an increased risk of social anxiety for intellectually gifted individuals. ...
Preprint
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The objective of this study was to provide a more complete description of the potential relations between intelligence and psychopathology, over the entire IQ range. We relied on a longitudinal study named EDEN which provides data for a large cohort of children who were subject to regular follow-ups since birth. Firstly, we tested correlations between IQ indices and psychopathology. Secondly, we performed a correlation analysis between verbal/performance IQ discrepancy and psychopathology. Psychopathology was defined in terms of three conditions: internalizing disorder, conduct disorder and social problems. We hypothesized a presence of a relation between cognitive ability and the aforementioned conditions, but we refrained from putting forward a hypothesis on the sign of this relation given the variability of the existing literature. The results of the present study constitute weak evidence in favour of the alternative hypothesis.
... Overexcitabilities have been studied in various contexts, which include variables such as age, gender, culture, creativity, artistic talent, brain structure and giftedness [21,[97][98][99][100]. ...
Article
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Heightened sensitivity, heightened intensity, heightened awareness and advanced cognitive development, compared to chronological aged peers, distinguish the highly-profoundly gifted child and permeate their social, emotional, physical, cognitive and/or altruistic life experiences. This instinctive and often asynchronous development has been historically misunderstood, misidentified, and misdiagnosed by professionals who have not received training on the unique char- acteristics, behaviors, and development typical of this population. As a result, the natural development and potential of highly-profoundly gifted children and adolescents are vulnerable and at high risk. A review of the literature found the characteristics, behaviors and developmental markers of the highly-profoundly gifted strikingly similar to the char- acteristics, behaviors and development of the combination of multiple, higher-level overexcitabilities. Further study of overexcitabilities and Dabrowski’s human development theory found the combination of multiple, higher-level overex- citabilities distinctively different than individual overexcitabilities. Developmental dynamisms explained the multi-facet- ed development of multiple overexcitabilities at the highest level. It was concluded that multiple, higher-level overex- citabilities and the development of dynamisms correlate closely with the heightened sensitivity, heightened intensity, heightened awareness and advanced cognitive development of highly-profoundly gifted children and adolescents and therefore could be an effective tool for identification. Additional research and further development of assessment tools to identify higher-level overexcitabilities, developmental dynamisms and highly-profoundly gifted students are warrant- ed. Education outreach and professional development are recommended for parents, teachers, school administrators, counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, pediatricians and policy makers to curve misunderstanding, misidentification and misdiagnosis. Mandates to appropriately identify and support the education and development of highly-profoundly gifted children and adolescents, are imperative.
... These overexcitabilities also provide a good framework of support to facilitate characterization of giftedness (Ackerman, 1997). In studies conducted with gifted individuals in relation to the domains of overexcitabilities, it has been pointed out that when compared to average people, gifted people exhibit considerably different performances in different domains (Ackerman, 1997;Bouchard, 2004;Bouchet and Falk, 2001;Gallagher, 1986;Piechowski and Miller, 1994;Piechowski, Silverman and Falk, 1985;Piechowski and Colengelo, 1984;Miller, Silverman and Falk, 1995;Yakmacı-Güzel and Akarsu, 2006) and particularly very strong evidence has been provided about the differences in the intellectual, fantastic and affective (The Big Three) domains (Mendaglio and Tillier, 2006). Under the heading of capacity to establish strong ties and deep relationships, which is particularly addressed within the affective domain, one of the domains of overexcitabilities, it is indicated that individuals have strong emotional ties to people, living things and places (Falk, Piechowski and Lind, 1994). ...
Article
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The purpose of this phenomenology study is to elicit and understand the gifted elementary school students’ opinions about environment. A total of three gifted elementary school students selected by means of the homogenous sampling technique participated in the current study conducted in line with the phenomenology design of quantitative research. The data were collected through the Draw-An-Environment Test and Rubric and one-to-one interviews conducted with the students. In the analysis of the collected data, textural and structural descriptions were used. In light of the findings of the current study, it can be said that the gifted students mainly used biotic elements in their drawings. In addition to this, the findings obtained from the drawings and interviews have revealed that the gifted students have a limited and anthropocentric perception of the environment. On the basis of the findings of the current study, it can be suggested that the number of environment-centred studies including gifted students as their participants should be increased and the environmental education to be given to gifted students should be focused on the inculcation of ecocentric conception of the environment in these students.
... It is important to acknowledge that there is a longstanding debate about the use of the term gifted in both research and practice (Ambrose et al., 2012;Borland, 2005;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Tansley, 2011). We did not impose a conceptual or operational definition in this study. ...
Article
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Interest in understanding gifted adults is growing amongst health professionals, researchers, educators, and gifted adults themselves. This study brings together international experts studying and working with gifted adults to find out what they think about the state of research in the area, and what is needed to move the field forward. Three rounds of a Delphi study involving 76 experts from 14 countries identified nine themes related to obstacles, priorities and actions, and six key recommendations. General agreement was found on the need for cross-disciplinary research and a multicultural approach. A range of views was expressed about how to move forward with different and potentially conflicting conceptual definitions. The multidisciplinary panel broadly supported six recommendations, with important differences of opinion in relation to methodological preferences and conceptual definitions. Implications for further work are discussed.
... Certaines particularités sont encore partiellement incomprises et ne font pas l'unanimité parmi les auteurs (p. ex., Mendaglio, 2012;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006;Winkler, 2014). ...
Conference Paper
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Conférence présentée au Colloque annuel sur la douance (Montreal, QC). Les types de solitudes qui peuvent être vécues par les élèves doués (manque d'appartenance, sentiment d'être incompris, solitude existentielle) sont présentés, un portrait des caractéristiques atypiques associés à ces solitudes est effectué et des pistes de solutions pour aider les élèves qui souffrent de solitude ou de marginalisation sont proposées.
... , 1997;Falk, et al., 1999;Bouchet & Falk, 2001;Bouchard, 2004;Treat, 2006Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006 Miller, et al., 1994;Bread, 1995;Pirto, Cassone, Ckerman & Fraas, .)1996;Bouchet & Falk, 2001;Smith, 2006;Tieso, 2007 ...
... Kazimierz Dabrowski (1902Dabrowski ( -1980, a Polish psychiatrist and psychologist, developed this theory over a lifetime of clinical and academic work [2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11]. Over the past forty years, TPD has been successfully applied to the field of gifted education and the study of gifted development [12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20]. However, TPD is still relatively unknown as a theory of human development. ...
Article
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This article presents Dabrowski’s Theory of Positive Disintegration (TPD) as future-oriented psychology. According to Dabrowski, positive disintegration is characterized by a transition from narrow to a broad understanding of reality, involving the capacity for reflecting on one’s past history (retrospection) and for envisaging the future of one’s personal growth (prospection). The article analyzes the TPD through the perspective of subjective time (mental time travel) and shows that each level of TPD expresses different awareness of subjective time and the developmental dynamisms are grounded in strong anticipation. Keywords: Dabrowski, The theory of positive disintegration, Future, Retrospection, Prospection, Mental time travel, Anticipation
... Ivcevic, & Brackett, 2007Dabrowski Lysy & Pichowski, 1983Dabrowski, 1972Piechowski, 1991Dabrowski, 1967 Dabrowski, 1964Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006 Bailey, 2010 Chang, 2001;Huang, 2005;Lin, 2003;Tieso, 2007;Treat, 2006Miller, Falk, & Huang, 2009Gross, Rinn, & Jamieson, 2007Piirto, Montgomery & May, 2008;Tieso, 2007Gallagher, 1986Huang, 2005Wahlberg, 2004Chang & Pan, 2008Huang, 2005;Wei, 2008Chang, 2011Ackerman, 1997 (Gutbezahl & Averill, 1996) Runco, 2011 Averill, 2009Ivcevic & et al., 2007Averill, 1999 -Preparedness Morton, 2013Rooij & et al., 2017Thomson & et al., 2010Ivcevic, & et al., 2007Rego & et al., 20072010Gurbuz & et al., 2016Svetlana & Klavdiya, 2015Oriol & et al., 2016Salavera & et al., 2017Chu, 2003Huang, 2005;Wahlberg, 2004;Chang & Pan, 2008;Wei, 2008;Chang, 2011McGovern, 2016-Beduna & Perrone 2014Limont & et al., Gallagher, 1986Imburgia & et al., 2012Wirthwein & et al., 2011;Ackerman, 1997Bounchet & Falk, 2001Ackerman, 1997Averill, 1999Jenaabadi & et al., 2015Salavera & et al., 2017Wang and Huang, 2015 - Psychomotor - Sensual - Intellectual - Imaginational - Emotional ...
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The kinds of overexcitability and their relation to emotional creativity among the seventh and tenth grades students Abstract: The study aimed at identifying the relationship between the kinds of overexcitability and emotional creativity among the upper elementary stage students in Amman, and the differences between them considering the gender and grade. The sample consisted of (264) students in 7th and 10th grades in Amman. Two scales have been applied in this study: (Falk & et al. scale for overexcitabilities, and Averill scale for emotional creativity). The results indicated that the level of overexcitabilities were medium, while the level of the total emotional creativity was high. and the results indicated the existence of significant positive relationships between the kinds of overexcitabilities (Intellectual, sensory, imagination, and Emotional) with emotional creativity, so the multiple regression analysis indicated that these kinds were predict the emotional creativity with a variance ratio of (24%). The results showed that there were significant differences in some of the overexcitabilities kinds (Intellectual, imagination, and emotional) due to the gender for female, but in psychomotor overexcitability for male, whereas there were no significant differences in the overexcitabilities due to grade or it's interaction with gender, except for psychomotor overexcitability. The study also found significant differences in the emotional creativity due to the gender for females, and to grade for 10th grade. Finally, the study recommended training of students in emotional creativity before the onset of adolescence.
... Dabrowski'ye göre bu duyarlılıklar, üstün yetenekli bireylerin dünya ile daha gelişmiş, nitelikli iletişimler kurmasını sağlamaktadır. Dabrowski'nin teorisindeki beşinci evreye sadece yaratıcı ifadeleriyle üstün yetenekli bireyler girebilir (Tillier, 2006). Bu aşamaya ulaşan bireyler genellikle yüksek bilişsel potansiyelde derin bir empati ve anlayışa sahip üstün yetenekli bireylerdir. ...
... Although beyond the scope of this paper, there is a long history of research on OE in the gifted (Falk & Miller, 2009;Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Aside from the OEQ, which is an open-ended instrument, there are also objective instruments available such as the Overexcitability Questionnaire-Two (OEQ-II) (Falk et al., 2016). ...
Preprint
Abstract: The construct of overexcitability originated from the condition known as “nervousness.” Dąbrowski differentiated it into types many years before publishing the first outline of his theory of positive disintegration. In this paper, we establish the origins of psychic overexcitability (OE), tracing its evolution in Dąbrowski’s work prior to developing his theory and later through its placement within the concept of developmental potential. Based on our study of Dąbrowski’s early Polish work, we challenge the belief that overexcitability is often misdiagnosed as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Piechowski’s elaboration of OE in gifted education is explored, and current misconceptions and misuses of OEs are critiqued. Based on our review, we present possible future applications and elaborations of overexcitability.
... To date, empirical evidence showing how overexcitabilities correspond (or not) to known psychological constructs is scant (but see Rinn and Reynolds, 2012;Vuyk et al., 2016). Attention has been drawn to the risk of using the concept of overexcitabilites outside the context of the whole TPD theoretical framework (Mendaglio and Tillier, 2006), as overexcitabilities are only one (the first factor) of three factors influencing personality development. The TPD is generally poorly known among psychologists, psychiatrists, and (mental) health practitioners and as it is rarely part of formal vocational or university training. ...
Article
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The theory of positive disintegration (TPD) is a complex theory of personality development elaborated by K. Dabrowski (1902–1980). The characteristics of this theory is that some signs of mental illness (e.g., neurosis, anxiety) along what is often considered a person's flaws (e.g., nervousness, maladjustment) are seen as positive signs that a person is developing their personality toward their “personality ideal” (i.e., the best, most altruistic, and worthy version of themselves) (Dabrowski, 1964; Dabrowski and Joshi, 1972). The implications of the TPD are that symptoms of poor mental health may not always be negative, but part of a necessary process which lets individuals who successfully navigate those difficult inner-states grow to be the best version of themselves.
... Contemporary research into the relationship between giftedness and overexcitability has placed particular emphasis on having a so-called "Big Three" combination of intellectual, imaginational, and emotional OEs (Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006), but Dąbrowski did not seem intent on all three being present in an OE profile. While he did believe that "Emotional (affective), imaginational and intellectual overexcitability are the richer forms" (1972, p. 7), he also noted that "Intellectual-emotional and intellectual-emotionalimaginational linkages are the basis of highly creative intelligence" (Dąbrowski, 1996, p. 78, emphasis added), suggesting that (1) two of the three richer forms were sufficient to promote advanced growth, and (2) the reference was specific to creative intelligence and not necessarily to other forms of intelligence. ...
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A sample of 108 highly gifted middle school students participated in a study of the relationships between Big Five factors and overexcitabilities. Students completed the NEO-FFI and Overexcitabilities Questionnaire-II (OEQ-II). A cutoff score applied to the OEQ-II created a threshold for overexcitability, ensuring only extreme responses. Analysis groups were based on the number of OEs students possessed based on the cutoff score. An analysis of variance assessed differences in students’ NEO-FFI scores according to the number of OEs they reported. Students with three or more overexcitabilities had significantly higher scores on NEO-FFI openness to experience than students with fewer overexcitabilities. Gifted females had significantly higher scores on NEO-FFI neuroticism scale than gifted males. The results hold implications for understanding the academic and social-emotional needs of highly gifted students and justify use of the Big Five model and overexcitabilities together to further understand the relationship between intelligence, personality, and giftedness.
... (p.78). Mendaglio, S., & Tillier, W. (2006) also discusses the theory while contrasting the phenomenon with with Dabrowski's approach to investigate the psychological state of individuals, and argues that "researchers should emulate Dabrowski's approach in future investigations." Prevously, many researchers such as Ackerman, C. M. Dabrowski (1996) elaborated the concept of developmental process in the following ways; ...
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This article adopts Dabrowski's theory of positive disintegration to investigate the relationship between psychology and mysticism. This study examines a psychological analysis of mystical experience of a character (mystic) named Kimya in Muriel Maufroy's novel "Rumi's Daughter". The analysis of the study is based on the questions such as 'how the mystic's experience of the divine can be translated in terms of a psychological process of personality disintegration initiated by a conflict, deconstruction of preconceived notions and beliefs and ultimately leading towards secondary integration of personality. Results of the study reveal certain parallels between the process of personality development and mystical experience. It settles the argument that the culmination of mystical union underlies psychological wellbeing and serenity on the part of mystic. The study also shows that mystics are those rare individuals who are capable of reaching the final level of personality development characterised by self-autonomy and higher level of consciousness.
... The stronger the endowment, the greater the potential for advanced development. Dąbrowski's notion of developmental potential includes a great deal more than just overexcitabilities, which the reader is encouraged to pursue independently (see Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006). Overexcitabilities include five different forms: intellectual, psychomotor, sensual, imaginational, and emotional. ...
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The purpose of the current study is to validate a measure of sensory processing sensitivity, the Highly Sensitive Person Scale, with a sample of high-ability individuals. Participants include 188 highly intelligent individuals. Results indicate a two-factor structure of the Highly Sensitive Person Scale. Validity and reliability evidence are provided. Conclusions and implications of using the Highly Sensitive Person Scale are discussed. Keywords: emotion, gifted, high ability, overexcitabilities, sensory processing sensitivity, validation
... However, death anxiety did not prove to be higher among gifted students in the same research. Generally speaking, the gifted adolescents tend to have significantly higher overexcitabilities than their non-gifted peers, especially of the emotional, intellectual and imaginational kind [39,[46][47][48]. Their overexcitabilities often appear in all the areas of sensory, imaginational, emotional, psychomotor and intellectual experience [41]. ...
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There has been an open-ended, continuing argumentation whether giftedness is associated with excessive stress burden or mental disorders. Various literature reviews and research articles exist on the subject, however, there has been little outcome concerning direct comparisons among gifted and non-gifted young people. Contemporary research still presents findings which support both views. In the present review, there has been made an attempt to provide a scientific perspective of research related to emotional problems and/or mental disorders of gifted adolescents. We included research concerning depression and suicidal behaviour, and studies which offer ample evidence on the way stress and anxiety are created, and function in gifted young people. We rather concentrated on research and articles focusing on examining gifted young adolescents in comparison with the general, non-gifted population of the same age. The present review has been limited to research published within the past twenty years (2000-2019).
... However, death anxiety did not prove to be higher among gifted students in the same research. Generally speaking, the gifted adolescents tend to have significantly higher overexcitabilities than their non-gifted peers, especially of the emotional, intellectual and imaginational kind [39,[46][47][48]. Their overexcitabilities often appear in all the areas of sensory, imaginational, emotional, psychomotor and intellectual experience [41]. ...
Article
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There has been an open-ended, continuing argumentation whether giftedness is associated with excessive stress burden or mental disorders. Various literature reviews and research articles exist on the subject, however, there has been little outcome concerning direct comparisons among gifted and non-gifted young people. Contemporary research still presents findings which support both views. In the present review, there has been made an attempt to provide a scientific perspective of research related to emotional problems and/or mental disorders of gifted adolescents. We included research concerning depression and suicidal behaviour, and studies which offer ample evidence on the way stress and anxiety are created, and function in gifted young people. We rather concentrated on research and articles focusing on examining gifted young adolescents in comparison with the general, non-gifted population of the same age. The present review has been limited to research published within the past twenty years (2000-2019).
... Some conclusions related to bullying and overexcitabilities or extreme sensitivities were drawn from the literature about Dabrowski's theory of positive disintegration (TPD; see Mendaglio & Tillier, 2006) but lack empirical evidence. Instead, openness to experience, a personality factor composed of six facets robustly described in the literature for the field of psychology, appears to be conceptually analogous to the assertion of overexcitabilities from the theory of positive disintegration, which has been described in gifted education literature without empirical support . ...
Chapter
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Bullying is a common experience of childhood and adolescence that is characterized by repeated actions over time with an intent to harm (Olweus, 1993). Students involved in bullying and victimization are more likely to have academic and social adjustment challenges and are at risk for long-term problems, such as anxiety, depression, and posttraumatic stress (Bosworth et al., 1999; Mynard et al., 2000; Olweus, 1993; Peterson & Ray, 2006a). Security and safety are foundational components of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to enhance quality learning in school and home settings. When students experience anxiety, fear, or negative situations, their openness to learning experiences may be adversely influenced. Quality learning materials and equipment are also important to learning environments. Technologies are ever-changing and advancing to benefit society, and with the use of new tools for communication, how people interact in both kind and unkind ways has also advanced. Today’s technology including social media—such as Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, smartphones, and instant messaging—has connected people in more ways than ever before. As technology has advanced for positive human interaction, so too, has the platform availability for negative interaction. Understanding the possibilities and the risks associated with harnessing educational technology in effective educational ways is an important responsibility of both parents and teachers. For students to optimize their talent development, their learning needs for safety, security, and advanced learning experiences should be tended to and met. This chapter focuses upon what is known about bullying, cyberbullying, and gifted students in the literature
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The construct of overexcitability originated from the condition known as “nervousness.” Dąbrowski differentiated it into types many years before publishing the first outline of his theory of positive disintegration. In this paper, we establish the origins of psychic overexcitability (OE), tracing its evolution in Dąbrowski’s work prior to developing his theory and later through its placement within the concept of developmental potential. Based on our study of Dąbrowski’s early Polish work, we challenge the belief that overexcitability is often misdiagnosed as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Piechowski’s elaboration of OE in gifted education is explored, and current misconceptions and misuses of OEs are critiqued. Based on our review, we present possible future applications and elaborations of overexcitability.
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Dabrowski's Theory of Emotional Development provides the framework for investigating the dynamic interplay of emotion and cognition in the personality development of a group of intellectually gifted adults and a group of graduate students. When the gifted adults were compared to the graduate students on developmental potential, as measured by their over-excitability scores, the gifted subjects showed substantially greater potential for emotional development; but when actual level of development was compared, no significant differences between the two groups were found. Gender differences were discovered in areas related to traditional gender-role socialization—women scored higher on emotional potential and level of emotional development while men were higher on intellectual potential. In support of Dabrowski's theoretical position, emotional, intellectual, and imaginational intensity significantly predicted level of development.
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The ElemenOE is a Likert-scaled observation checklist developed in this study to measure 5 personality characteristics in elementary school children, with predictive validity for identifying giftedness. The characteristics, named “overexcitabilities,” are described within the context of Dabrowski’s Theory of Positive Disintegration. Five scholars of Dabrowski’s theory rated an initial 100 items for content validity. The 61 strongest items comprised the pilot instrument, which teachers used to describe 373 students. Exploratory factor analysis using varimax rotation found factors that related to the 5 OEs. Items with loadings of less than .5 were eliminated, thus creating the 30-item ElemenOE. Teachers used the ElemenOE to describe 171 gifted and nonidentified children. A discriminant analysis yielded one function that significantly discriminated between groups. The ElemenOE classified 76% of gifted students and 42% of nonidentified students as having similar OE profiles. These results indicate that, with revisions, the ElemenOE may be useful in identifying gifted students who are missed by traditional identification measures.
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This study examines the relationship among giftedness, gender, and overexcitability. Previous studies examining these relationships were based on an open-ended questionnaire and small samples. This study uses a new self-rating questionnaire to assess overexcitabilities, the Overexcitability Questionnaire II, and findings are based on a large sample of 562 university students. Giftedness was measured by a student's participation in either a gifted, advanced, or standard curriculum program. Results show that previous findings on the relationship between giftedness and overexcitability can be confirmed; gifted students scored significantly higher on intellectual and emotional overexcitability than students in either of the other two programs. Further, males scored higher overall on intellectual, imaginational, and psychomotor overexcitability, while females scored higher on emotional and sensual overexcitability.
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An exploratory study was conducted to determine the potential of overexcitability assessment as a method for identifying giftedness beyond traditional means. Overexcitability (i.e. an intensified way of experiencing the world) can occur in five areas: psychomotor, sensual, imaginational, intellectual, and emotional, and are assessed using the Overexcitability Questionnaire. In a group of high school students, discriminant analyses indicated that overexcitability (OE) profiles in the areas of psychomotor, intellectual, and emotional overexcitabilities differentiated between gifted and nongifted students. Approximately 35% of the nonidentified students had the same profile as the gifted subjects suggesting the potential of OE profiles for use in the identification of gifted students. Linguistic and cultural issues are discussed, as well as, the implications for research and instructional practice.
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There exist important personality characteristics of the gifted and talented that intelligence tests do not tap. Among these characteristics is a broad range of a heightened activity which finds expression in an enlarged and intensified manner of feeling, thinking, imagining, even tasting. The model of developmental potential defines five dimensions of such enhanced mental functioning. These five dimensions provide a broader conception of the makeup of giftedness and talent. The model offers new means of examining commonly used methods of identification; it also offers ways of recognizing potential for self-actualization and outstanding moral development.
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By comparing the overexcitability scores of 27 Venezuelan and 23 American artists, support was found for the hypothesis that creative individuals show a high degree of animistic, intuitive, and emotional thinking. Overexcitability refers to heightened mental functioning in Dabrowski's (1964) theory of emotional development. Along with other special talents and abilities, it represents the developmental potential for intensified personality growth. Scores on 4 of the 5 dimensions of overexcitability were not significantly different for American and Venezuelan artists. This evidence of similar profiles for artists in 2 different societies demonstrates cross-cultural validity for the concept of developmental potential.
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Compared overexcitability profiles in (1) 23 18–59 yr olds active in art, music, literature, or other artistic fields; (2) 37 intellectually gifted 22–55 yr olds; and (3) 42 22–50 yr old graduate students, using a 21-item, free-response questionnaire. Five broadly defined areas of psychic life were measured by the instrument: personal level of energy, sensual aliveness, the pursuit of knowledge and truth, imagination, and the life of feeling. A model predicted that the strength, richness, and depth of talent would be a function of the 5 measured dimensions. Analysis showed that intellectual talent tended to be associated with 3 dimensions (intellectual, imaginational, and emotional), while artistic talent tended to be associated with high scores on all 5 dimensions (especially on imaginational and emotional). In contrast, graduate students had lower scores on all 5 dimensions. (42 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Interviewed 13 Ss (aged 19–43 yrs) who had a serious involvement with artistic or creative work at a vocational, professional, or avocational level to assess the manner of functioning and interaction patterns of the 5 categories of overexcitability (i.e., psychomotor, emotional, sensual, intellectual, imaginational) that are considered to be basic in gifted and creative individuals. It is suggested that the model of the 5 dimensions of mental functioning is useful in describing the psychological endowment of artists. Three patterns of overexcitability that emerged from the study (balanced and integrated, emotionally vulnerable, and polarized and restless) are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Developmental psychology, in spite of its dynamic growth, has not, thus far, generated a general theory of human development. Present developmental theories are either cognitive or ontogenetic, or both. All are descriptive. Their powers of explanation are limited. None of them include emotional development. It is argued that a theory of development in order to claim generality must (a) include emotional development, and (b) offer means of explaining, rather than only describing, developmental transformations. A nonontogenetic theory of development, called theory of positive disintegration, appears to fulfill these conditions. It is built on Jacksonian principles of evolution of levels of functioning. The central concept of the theory is that of multilevelness of developmental phenomena. Development is seen to be a function of the level of behavioral organization. The theory defines five levels. Each level constitutes a distinct structure. The dynamic elements of the structure of each level are identified. Positive disintegration is the name for the process by which the structure of a higher level replaces the structure of a lower one. The theory explains different developmental patterns by introducing the concept of developmental potential (DP). Although DP is a purely logical notion, it is given observable dimensions designated as dimensions of mental functioning. There are five of these and they correspond to psychomotor, sensual, imaginational, intellectual, and emotional modes of functioning. The first half of the monograph is devoted to the conceptual structure of the theory. The second half to empirical tests of the theory. Three such tests were made on data generated from an atomistic analysis of autobiographies. The first test consisted of the comparison of developmental cross-sections obtained from different sources of data (subjects) with the overall pattern of five levels of development. The different cross-sections overlap with each other and with different segments of the total theoretical pattern. Superimposed on each other they reconstitute the total pattern. The second test consisted of a comparison between computed and clinically derived values for DP for each subject in the study. The third test was a comparison of DP values obtained from early and late parts of an autobiography. An empirical equation for DP was used in the second and the third test. Parameters represented in the equation appear sufficient to account for individual differences in patterns and levels of development.
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This article involves an examination of the literature concerning suicide among gifted adolescents. Background is provided concerning the historical overview of the field of suici‐dology and the theory on suicide. The literature on suicide among adolescents in general is overviewed, and the literature concerning suicide among the gifted is examined in more depth. Lastly, the literature on the role schools can play in suicide prevention and intervention is examined due to the impact educational institutions can have on the lives of students, including the gifted. What is apparent from this review is that the knowledge about suicide among adolescents has grown dramatically since the conception of the field of suicidology. However, the literature directly concerned with the topic of suicide among gifted adolescents is filled with much conjecture rather than empirically sound research. At this time there is no significant research to support the claim that the rates of attempted or completed suicide among the gifted differ from rates on nongifted adolescents, but research does indicate that suicide occurs among the gifted population. It is also apparent that suicide is occurring among the gifted at a rate which necessitates school personnel to have the ability to recognize warning signs in an effort to help students and deter loss of lives.
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Current research suggests that individuals with autism may also be gifted, and they sometimes display similar traits and behaviors. Following a brief introduction to the autistic population and a definition of the autistic disorder, behaviors connecting these twice‐exceptional learners are explored. Biographical sketches are presented as profiles of these exceptional individuals who struggle with discrepant strengths and weaknesses on a daily basis. The impact of giftedness on individuals with autism is discussed in terms of positive and negative effects, and the implications for their future growth and adjustment as adults. The need for suitable, life‐long educational interventions is argued.
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This evocative essay explores the relationship between denial of anger and denial of Self in light of two aspects of Dabrowski's Theory of Positive Disintegration: the Levels of Emotional Development and the Overexcitabilities. It suggests that issues for gifted children are exacerbated by their emotional intensity and discusses dilemmas confronted by gifted children who are faced with resolving disparities between their idealism and their experience of anger. The search for Self of a gifted individual grappling with issues of denial of anger is illustrated by a poem describing inner turmoil and efforts to achieve resolution. In addition, the article offers examples of strategies that might enable gifted children's expression of overexcitabilities to help them move toward fuller development of Self in relationship to dealing with anger. A number of questions pertinent to the topic are also raised.
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This study investigated affective characteristics of academically gifted adults using two models: Clark's (1983) notion of concomitant problems and Dabrowski's (Piechowski, 1979) construct of overexcitabilities, concepts collectively referred to as “intensities.” The population studied was adults who had demonstrated high academic achievement by successfully competing for admission to a doctoral program in Education. Thirty‐one doctoral students responded to a researcher‐developed questionnaire designed to measure intensity characteristics. A subset of 11 students participated in focus groups conducted to investigate qualitatively their perceptions of the concept of psychological intensities. Focus group data supported the constructs of intellectual and emotional overexcitabilities and concomitant problems. Factor analysis of questionnaire responses produced five factors. Subjects perceived themselves as different from typical persons on factors reflecting internal motivation, positive aspects of overexcitability, and need for recognition by others. Results supported empirical literature on gifted individuals’ positive self‐perceptions as well as the applicability of the concept of psychological intensities to their lives.
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Discusses the types of problems faced by talented adolescents, including family and peer relations, biological and developmental issues, negative and harmful school culture, drug and alcohol abuse, inappropriate academic curriculum, underachievement, perfectionism, and stress. Strategies teachers can use to meet the socio-emotional needs of gifted adolescents are described. (CR)
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This on-going qualitative multiple case study is examining K. Dabrowski's ideas concerning psychic overexcitability in gifted children, by describing the overexcitabilities exhibited by five young gifted children. The five children, ages 3 and 4, attend a private school for gifted children and were purposely selected to provide examples of the five different types of overexcitability postulated by Dabrowski. These are: (1) psychomotor overexcitability, (2) sensual overexcitability, (3) intellectual overexcitability, (4) imaginational overexcitability, and (5) emotional overexcitability. Data sources included individualized education plans of each child, intellectual evaluations, developmental questionnaires completed by parents, interviews with teachers, and observations of students in classrooms. Analysis indicated that all the children exhibited behaviors characteristic of intellectual, imaginational, and emotional overexcitability and two of the children also exhibited psychomotor and sensual excitability. Examples are given of child behaviors which demonstrate each of these sensitivities and of teaching strategies for dealing with them. (Contains 23 references.) (DB)
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A translation of a book by a professor in the Polish Academy of Science. "The disintegration process, through loosening and even fragmenting the internal psychic environment, through conflicts within the internal environment and with the external environment, is the ground for the birth and development of a higher psychic structure." Instincts are not regarded as existing only under the influence of phylogenetic changes. They change through positive disintegration, i.e. instincts lose their primitive strength and evolve to new levels of expression in the cycle of human life. These concepts are discussed in relationship to creativity, psychopathological development and other processes. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Investigated the relationship between creative personality characteristics and psychic overexcitabilities (OEs), as defined by K. Dabrowski and M. M. Piechowski's (1977) theory of emotional development. 21 gifted 7th and 8th graders (IQs 127–242) were administered the Something About Myself (SAM) portion of the Khatena-Torrance Creative Perception Inventory and an overexcitabilities questionnaire. The 7 Ss with the highest SAM scores were designated as high creative (HC) and the 7 Ss with the lowest SAM scores were designated as low creative (LC). A t test was performed on the group means of the 2 groups on the 5 dimensions of overexcitability: psychomotor, sensual, imaginational, intellectual, and emotional. Findings indicate that HC Ss showed significantly higher levels of imaginational, emotional, and intellectual OE than did LC Ss. It is suggested that the level of OE is a promising indicator of creative ability. Imaginational, emotional, and intellectual OE appear to be related to the creative personality and need to be recognized and provided for to offer the creatively gifted opportunities for maximum development. (21 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Measuring levels of emotional development
  • D F Gage
  • P A Morse
  • M M Piechowski
Gage, D. F., Morse, P. A., & Piechowski, M. M. (1981). Measuring levels of emotional development. Genetic Psychology Monographs, 103,129-152