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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Seeing possibilities : envisioning gifted education Burd, Rosemary Alexandra


This thesis investigates how seeing contributes to understanding, communicating, and conceptualizing ideas around giftedness and gifted education. Drawing on the work of Arnheim (1969), Greene (1998), Johnson (2007), and McGilchrist (2009), I explore seeing as an act of inquiry, a form of visual thinking that includes looking, visualizing, understanding, and imagining. Based on my experiences in gifted education, I employ seeing as a research methodology as I interrogate the visual aspect of texts from the field of gifted education and my own personal narratives; based on my experiences as a visual thinker, I use seeing as a visual practice of working through and communicating ideas. In this way, I use both words and images within this thesis to explore and convey ideas around concepts of giftedness, equity in gifted education, identification practices, and the role of the visual in developing novel ideas and insights. I conclude that in order to see more possibilities for gifted education, the field of gifted education must embrace a greater role for visual thinking.

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