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High Achievers Vs. Gifted Learners Vs. Creative Thinkers

High Achievers

Gifted Learners

Creative Thinkers
Remember answers

Poses unforeseen questions

Sees exceptions

Are interested

Are curious


Are attentive

Are beyond the group

Daydream, may seem off task

Generate advanced ideas

Generate complex, abstract ideas

Overflow with ideas, many of which will never be developed

Work hard to achieve

Know without working hard

Play with ideas and concepts

Answer questions in detail

Already knows

Inject new possibilities

Perform at the top of the group

Need 1 - 3 repetitions to master

Are in their own group

Respond with interest and opinion

Are selectively mentally engaged

Share bizarre, sometimes conflicting opinions

Learn with ease

Comprehend in-depth, complex ideas

Question "What if . . . "

Need 6 - 8 repetitions to master

Prefer the company of intellectual peers

Question the need for mastery

Comprehend on a high level

Create complex, abstract humor

Comprehend in-depth, complex ideas

Enjoy the company of age peers

Are intense

Prefer the company of creative peers but will often work alone

Understand complex, abstract humor

Ponder with depth and multiple perspectives

Relish wild, off-the-wall humor

Grasp the meaning

Infer and connect concepts

Make mental leaps; a-ha

Complete assignments on time

Initiate projects and extensions of assignments

Initiate more projects that will never be completed

Are receptive

Are original and continually developing

Are independent and unconventional

Are accurate and complete

Enjoy self-directed learning

Are original and continually developing

Often enjoy school

Manipulate information

Enjoy creating

Absorb information

Guess and infer well


Are technicians with expertise in a field

Anticipate and relate observations

Are inventors and idea generators

Memorize well

Are self-critical

Create and brainstorm well

Are highly alert and observant

May not be motivated by grades

Are intuitive

Are pleased with their own learning

Are intellectual

Never finish with possibilities

Get A's


May not be motivated by grades

Are able


Are idiosyncratic

Adapted from VAG Newsletter, Summer 2004 

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