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Talent Search Programs

Talent Searches identify, assess, and recognize students with exceptional mathematical and/or verbal reasoning abilities.  The Talent Search gives students the opportunity to take a test designed for older students, one with a higher ceiling. This testing will reveal more about their academic abilities and will allow them to compare their results with those of other highly able students. They will also learn about educational options and opportunities for students with similar abilities, and they will receive recognition for their outstanding achievements. From Center for Talented Youth (CTY), Johns Hopkins University, but applies to all Talent Search programs...
Belin-Blank Exceptional Student Talent Search Interpretation Guide
Helps parents understand what Explore Talent Search scores mean, by grade.  Asks for name and grade, only to put the name at the top of each page of the results.  Grade is important, of course...
Comparative Features of the SAT and ACT for the CTY Talent Search 2007-2008
Several talent search programs offer both the SAT and ACT for middle school talent search.  Which should your child select?  It depends...
CTY Webinar Wednesdays
Live video presentations delivered via the internet, with two-way audio communication by phone - ask questions any time! Pre-register, or register just prior to the event...
The Winter Series runs Wednesdays from December 3 to 17, January 7 to 21, with three sessions at 12 p.m. CTY Talent Search: Identification and Benefits, 1 p.m. CTY Programs Overview, and 4 p.m. CTY Testing: Philosophy and Preparation.
Gifted Today (was Digest of Gifted Research, also Duke Gifted Letter) Duke University Talent Identification Program (TIP)
Practical tools and inspiration with which to undertake the quest to parent your gifted child, the TIP parents' blog...
Discovering highly gifted students by J. Hansen
The principle reason for identifying highly gifted children is to help them get a better education than they probably would get otherwise. Tests designed for age-peers are powerless in yielding information to meet this end. One effective method of discovering highly gifted students is by above-level testing...
Evaluating the Appropriateness of the SAT I: Reasoning Test for Seventh and Eighth Graders by Cathy Wendler, Anne Ninneman, and Miriam Feigenbaum
In addition to the main points that "The use of the SAT by talent identification programs does not seem to penalize students who choose to take the test," and "The performance of seventh and eighth graders on the SAT is amazing," this article contains excellent charts comparing the math and verbal scores of 7th/8th grade talent search students to the same years' college bound seniors 
The Explore Test: A Talent Search by Linda
Questions and answers about the Explore Test, a commonly used Talent Search identification test.
Editor's Note: Other often used out-of-level tests include the SCAT, PLUS, and SAT I or ACT (the same SAT I or ACT tests that American high school juniors and seniors take for college admission).
The Fourth R: Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, Relaxation by Ron Rubenzer, in Insights, a publication of the Duke University Talent Identification Program
Competition can be a good thing, because it can make everyone perform just a little better.  But taken too far, competition can lead students to feel overwhelmed.  One out of three college freshman feels overwhelmed, and many high scholers feel overwhelmed by achievement stress.  You can get the proper grip on competition by following these recommendations ...
Future Career Path Of Gifted Youth Can Be Predicted By Age 13 By SAT Science Daily
Vanderbilt study finds that future career direction of the most talented youth can be determined by SAT scores at age 13.  While this contradicts other research on SAT predictive value, researchers say the difference is the early age of testing...
An Interview with Julian C. Stanley in Duke Gifted Letter
The ablest children need to be identified early so that they can maximize their personal and social contributions. Promising youngsters need to be continually given opportunities to use their talents and further develop them, whether through advanced schoolwork, mentorships, internships, or special academic programs (particularly during the summer)...
the Real CTY a wiki by the kids, for the kids...
Want to know what the kids think of CTY?  Want your kids to "get the idea" before they decide to attend?  Check out the Real CTY wiki...
SAT talent searches lead nowhere for many by Laura Vanderkam
As schools across the country prepare their students for annual grade-level testing under the No Child Left Behind Act, thousands of bright seventh- and eighth-graders are getting ready to take on a greater challenge this Saturday: the SAT college entrance exam. These scores will help schools determine which students need more advanced work than they may be getting in class. At least, that's the idea...
Supplementing the Education of Children with Exceptional Mathematical or Verbal Reasoning Ability by Julian C. Stanley
Upon what principles is this highly successful, robustly persistent, widespread set of programs based?  Our approach has, to coin an oxymoron, been benignly insidious. In effect, we have burrowed up somewhat subversively under the school system, not approaching school boards but instead sending scores directly to the student...
Talent Search: Purposes, Rationale, and Role in Gifted Education by Paula Olszewski-Kubilius
Talent search includes 3 important component: diagnosis and evaluation of domains and levels of talent, educational placement and guidance, and talent development opportunities including summer programs, distance learning programs, contests and competitions, etc. A solid research base supports the validity of the talent search identification protocol, the success of students in accelerative programs and the benefits of participation...
Tracking Exceptional Human Capital Over Two Decades by David Lubinski, Camilla P. Benbow, Rose Mary Webb and April Bleske-Rechek
Talent-search participants scoring in the top 0.01% on cognitive-ability measures were identified before age 13 and tracked over 20 years. Their creative, occupational, and life accomplishments are compared with those of graduate students enrolled in top-ranked U.S. mathematics, engineering, and physical science programs in 1992 and tracked over 10 years. By their mid-30s, the two groups achieved comparable and exceptional success, and reported high and commensurate career and life satisfaction...
Johns Hopkins CTY Talent Search SAT and ACT Test Data
Allows you to compare your child's test scores with the scores of students who are in your child's same grade and participated in CTY's Talent Search. These statistics, in conjunction with your child's scores, will provide a better perspective on how your child scored relative to other highly able students--your child's true peer group...
Duke TIP 4th-6th Grade Talent Search 20172018 PSAT 8/9 Score Results Summary
Compare PSAT 8/9 achievement levels to 9,635 participants in the TIP Talent Search, plus suggestions for using those scores. Also visit Advocacy Tools...
Canada Ireland United States


TIP/Canada, OISE/University of Toronto SAT I in grade 7 or 8
Centre for Gifted Education at the University of Calgary Talent Search elementary, expanding to jr. high


Irish Centre For Talented Youth (CTYI), Dublin City University SAT at age 12 to 16

United States

The Belin Elementary Student Talent Search (BESTS) multiple locations
Explore in grade 3 to 6
ACT in grade 7 to 9
Center for Bright Kids (CBK) / Western Academic Talent Search (WATS) 7 states
Explore in grade 3 to 6
SAT or ACT in grade 6 to 9 (under age 15)
Center for Talented Youth (CTY), Johns Hopkins University 19 states, D.C., plus international (some testing at Sylvan Technology Centers)
SCAT in grade 2 to 6,
SAT or ACT plus optional Spatial Test Battery (STB) in grade 7 and 8
Motivation for Academic Performance (MAP), Duke University locations in 16 states
Explore in grade 4 and 5
Northwestern University's Midwest Academic Talent Search (NUMATS) at Center for Talent Development (CTD)  locations in 8 mid-western states
Explore in grade 3 to 6
SAT I or ACT in grade 6 to 9
Talent Identification Program (TIP), Duke University locations in 16 states
Explore in 4th or 5th grade
SAT or ACT in 7th grade
The Washington Search for Young Scholars (WSYS), University of Washington Washington
ACT in 8th grade

Last updated December 01, 2020

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