International Education Journal

Special Issue: International Perspectives on Giftedness


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Creativity of the disaffected gifted

Alexander Seeshing Yeung 
Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong 

Alan Ping-Yan Chow 
Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong SAR 

Phoebe Ching-Wa Chow 
Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong SAR


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Disruptive students are often perceived to be unmotivated, low in self-concept, and lacking in creative characteristics such as originality in thinking and imagination. A total of 99 students from 6th Grade classes of a primary school in Hong Kong completed a survey asking about their effort goal orientation in school motivation, academic self-concept, originality in thinking, and imagination. Those students identified by teachers to be gifted in non-academic areas but disaffected and occasionally disruptive (n=20) were compared with the other students (n=79) in the four measures. Analysis of variance showed that students found to be disaffected and disruptive did not differ from the other students in self-concept and their effort goal orientation. However, they scored significantly higher in their self-perceptions of originality and imagination. The results cast doubt not only on the assumption of the weaknesses of disaffected students, but also challenge the appropriateness of the school curriculum to suit the needs of some gifted children. Curriculum designers and teachers should consider learning activities that may fully nurture the disaffected students' creativity components to help them become useful citizens. 

Creativity, self-concept, gifted, curriculum, disaffected


 Yeung, A.S., Chow, P.Y.  and Chow, C.W. (2005) Creativity of the disaffected gifted. International Education Journal, 6(2), 281-289.

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