June Maker, developer of unique perfomance-based assessment, to deliver 2008 Torrance Lecture

June Maker, developer of unique performance-based assessment, to deliver 2008 Torrance Lecture on March 17

Athens, Ga. – C. June Maker, an education researcher who developed a unique performance-based assessment designed to identify the academic and creative strengths of children, will deliver the 2008 E. Paul Torrance Lecture at the Georgia Center for Continuing Education Conference Center and Hotel on Monday, March 17.

Maker, a professor of special education at the University of Arizona, will briefly explain the assessment, present research on its usefulness and validity, and provide information about ways it has been used in the lecture at 5:30 p.m. in Masters Hall. She will describe the curriculum model designed to mesh with the assessment, giving an overview of the research on its effectiveness – both in the development of academic skills and creativity.

Maker initially designed the assessment to increase the participation of students from diverse groups in programs for the gifted, but later expanded it to include the identification of the strengths of all children so their positive traits could be recognized and developed.

This assessment and the corresponding model for designing appropriate curriculum and instruction to meet the needs of diverse groups are consistent with research in cognitive science and an emerging paradigm in the field of education of the gifted. These approaches are based on the theories and research of Stephen Ceci, Howard Gardner and Robert Sternberg; and represent Maker’s synthesis during 16 years of research and development through the Discovering Intellectual Strengths and Capabilities while Observing Varied Ethnic Responses (DISCOVER) Projects. Maker is extending this work by integrating it with the work of educators in Europe and Asia and has developed a new classification of human abilities based on her research.

The lecture is open to all UGA faculty, students and the general public. A welcome reception will be held at 5 p.m. and a closing reception at about 6:30 p.m. Further questions or details can be addressed by contacting creative@uga.edu or 706/542-5104.

The E. Paul Torrance Lecture Series annually brings scholars to UGA to discuss research and issues concerned with creativity. It was established in 1985 in honor of Torrance, a native Georgian and a pioneer in research on the identification and development of creative potential. He is most noted for the development of the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking, which today are used worldwide.

The lecture is sponsored by The Torrance Center for Creativity and Talent Development, which was established in 1984 by the late UGA professor of educational psychology Mary Frasier, to continue the tradition of scholarship and excellence exemplified in Torrance’s work.

For more information on the Torrance Center, see www.coe.uga.edu/torrance/