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Assessment of mental retardation and giftedness. By: Jennifer Goshert and Courtney Boyle. Giftedness. Mental Retardation. Mental Retardation. Definition according to the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

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Assessment of mental retardation and giftedness

Assessment of mental retardation and giftedness

By: Jennifer Goshert and Courtney Boyle

Assessment of mental retardation and giftedness


Mental Retardation

Mental retardation

Mental Retardation

  • Definition according to the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

    • “Intellectual disability is a disability characterized by significant limitations both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior, which covers many everyday social and practical skills. This disability originates before the age of 18”. 

Characteristics of mr

Characteristics of MR

  • IQ of 70 or below

  • A deficiency in 2 or more of the following adaptive skill areas:

    • Communication

    • Self-care

    • Home living

    • Social skills

    • Community use

    • Self-direction

    • Health and safety

    • Functional academics

    • Leisure

    • Work

Characteristics of mr1

Characteristics of MR

  • Levels:

    • Mild

    • Moderate

    • Severe

    • Profound

  • Cognitive deficits tend to affect memory, attention, and language

  • Individuals with severe MR tend to have brain damage which can cause physical disorders such as cerebral palsy and seizure disorders like epilepsy



  • Categorize in intensity the following scenarios.

Syndromes associated with mental retardation

Syndromes associated with Mental Retardation

  • Down Syndrome


  • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

  • Fragile X Syndrome

  • Mucopolysoccharidoses (MPS)

  • Noonan Syndrome

Assessment of mr

Assessment of MR

  • Comprehensive patient and family history

    • Maternal health status during pregnancy

    • Baseline history of patient

  • Physical Examination

    • Focusing on:

      • Dysmorphic features

      • Minor abnormalities

  • Developmental screenings

    • The Revised Denver Prescreening Development Questionnaire

    • Denver Developmental Screening Test

    • Kansas Infant Development Screen

  • Adaptive Behavior Tests

  • IQ Tests

Adaptive behavior tests

Adaptive Behavior Tests

  • Scales of Independent Behavior (SIB-R)

    • Can be given to 3 months-80 years

    • Multiple forms for children and visually impaired

    • Produces a service score

  • Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales

    • Can be given up to 18 years

    • Focuses on personal and social skills

Adaptive behavior tests1

Adaptive Behavior Tests

  • AAMR Adaptive Behavior Scale 2nd edition (AAMR ABS)

    • Two forms: school and residential/community settings

    • Unidimensional scales

  • Inventory for Client and Agency Planning (ICAP)

    • In addition to measuring adaptive behaviors this test also compiles a comprehensive set of information including demographic characteristics, diagnoses, support services needed and received, and social/leisure activities

    • Produces a service score

    • Is similar to SIB-R but shorter

Stanford binet


  • Given to individuals between 2 and 23 years of age

  • Tests intelligence across four areas: verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, abstract/visual reasoning, and short-term memory.

  • 15 subtests- age depends number given and the level in which one starts

  • Takes around 45 to 90 minutes

Wechsler intelligence scales

Wechsler Intelligence Scales

  • Three different scales used: Adult, Children (WISC), Preschool

  • WISC is given to children 6 to 16 years of age

  • Divided into 2 main sections- Verbal and Nonverbal

  • Takes around 60 to 90 minutes

Iq test scores for mr

IQ Test Scores for MR

  • Mild

    • IQ: 70-55/50

  • Moderate

    • IQ: 55/50-40/35

  • Severe

    • IQ: 40/35-25/20

  • Profound

    • IQ: below 25/20



  • Create something that represents what giftedness means to you.



  • Definition according to the National Association of Gifted Children

    • “Gifted individuals are those who demonstrate outstanding levels of aptitude or competence in one or more domains. Domains include any structured area of activity with its own symbol system and/or set of sensorimotor skills.”

Informal vs formal

Informal vs. Formal



  • Developmental Checklists (Compares children to peers)

  • Characteristics of Gifted Children Checklists

  • Example:

  • Assessed through IQ tests- tests only academic giftedness

  • IQ - Ratio between the mental age and the actual age

  • To calculate - Divide mental Age by actual age then multiply by 100

  • Also used to assess for cognitive delays - MR

Scoring for stanford binet wechsler intelligence scales

Scoring for Stanford-Binet & Wechsler Intelligence Scales

  • Both are norm referenced tests

  • 100 average on both, 130 well-above

  • Scoring done in each individual section, then as a whole

Giftedness is controversial

Giftedness is Controversial

  • What the true definition of giftedness?

  • Are there levels of giftedness? 

  • Does giftedness guarantee success?

  • Which form of assessment for giftedness is most reliable in predicting future success?

  • Is everyone gifted?

Torrance test of creative thinking

Torrance Test of Creative Thinking

  • Tests CQ (Creative Quotient)

  • 2 tests within TTCT-V (Verbal) & TTCT-F (Figural)

  • Verbal tests- 1st grade- adult, 40 minutes

  • Figural tests- K- adult, 30 minutes

Torrance test of creative thinking1

Torrance Test of Creative Thinking

TTCT-V (Verbal)

TTCT- F (Figural)

  • 6 word based activities

  • Assesses mental fluency, flexibility, and originality

  • Format- participants are asked questions, to improve products, and just suppose

  • Norm-referenced

  • 3 activities at 10 minutes each

  • Includes picture construction, and completion

  • Tests mental fluency, originality, elaboration, abstractness of titles, resistance to premature closure (norm referenced)

  • 13 criterion referenced areas assessed as well

Scoring and administration of ttct

Scoring and Administration of TTCT

  • Training sessions at the Torrance Center in Georgia

  • Not best artist on Figural but one with best ideas

  • Higher scores on Figural- conveyed a story, showed emotion, showed a different angle, showed sense of motion, displayed humor, and/or detail

  • Example of scoring-

Gardner s multiple intelligences

Gardner's Multiple Intelligences

  • Everyone has strengths that IQ test may not measure

  • Defined intelligence as “the capacity to solve problems or to fashion products that are valued in one or more cultural settings”

  • His theory of multiple intelligences lists nine different intelligences:

    • Logical-mathematical

    • Linguistic

    • Bodily-kinesthetic

    • Musical

    • Spatial

    • Interpersonal

    • Intrapersonal

    • Naturalist

    • Existential

  • Explains giftedness in one particular area and not others



  • American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. (n.d.). Definition of Intellectual Disability. Retrieved March 15, 2011, from AAIDD:

  • College of Education at the University of Georgia. The Torrance Center Training Opportunities. Retrieved March 21, 2011 from COE of the University of Georgia:

  • Council for Exceptional Children. (n.d.). Mental Retardation. Retrieved March 14, 2011, from CEC:

  • Daily, D. K., Ardinger, H. H., & Holmes, G. E. (2000, February 15). Identification and Evaluation of Mental Retardation. American Family Physician .

  • Hill, B. (2001, January 11). Adaptive Behavior. Retrieved March 15, 2011, from Assessment Psychology Online:



  • Intelligence tests. (2007). In World of Health. Gale. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.butler.edu4024/ic/suic/ReferenceDetailsPage/ReferenceDetailsWindow?displayGroupName=Reference&prodId=SUIC&action=2&catId=&documentId=GALE%7CCV2191500686&userGroupName=butleru&jsid=b815fdfeaf97abda5b425853e993333b. 

  • Mensa International. (2011). About Mensa International. Retrieved from

  • Mental Retardation. (2002). In Encyclopedia of the Human Brain. Retrieved from

  • National Association for Gifted Children. (2008). Informal Assessment and Checklists. Retrieved from

  • National Association for Gifted Children. (2008). IQ Tests and Your Child. Retrieved from



  • National Association for Gifted Children. (2008). What is Giftedness?. Retrieved from

  • Newsweek. How Creative are You?. Retrieved March 21, 2011, from Newsweek:

  • Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking. (2007). In Encyclopedia of Special Education: A Reference for the Education of the Handicapped and Other Exceptional Children and Adults. Retrieved from

  • Sadker, D. M., Sadker, M. P., & Zittleman, K. R. (2008). Multiple Intelligences. In Teachers, Schools, and Society (pp. 44-46). New York: McGraw-Hill.

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