Understanding Aptitude in Psychological Perspective


Basically, everyone or every child has the different talents. The differences were placed by the kind of talents. For instance, Anna Pavlova was very talented in ballet. Rembrant, Van Gogh, Leonardo da Vinci, Affandi, Basuki Abdullah, S. Sudjojono, Barly, were dazzling the world by their paintings. Mohammad Ali, Mike Tyson, Joe Louis are some names who have become the legend of boxing. And absolutely, we’ll never forget about the classical music by Mozart, Beethoven, who were talented in music. Actually, the big question in our mind is “Where their aptitudes come from? Is it coming from genetically? Or by hard practicing?”

  • What’s the meaning of aptitude?

First step I will begin from this question which actually always being asked in the class. And also, what is the difference between aptitude, ability, capacity, and achievement? Usually, an aptitude is comprehended by genetically ability which constitutes potential ability that still needs to be developed or to be practiced in order that to be materialized.

Ability is a power to do an action as character and training. Ability shows that an action can be done and workable for now, whereas the aptitude needs a continue practices and education in order that an action can be done in the future.

Capacity is commonly used as the synonym of “ability” and usually means as an ability which can be utterly developed in the future if the practice condition can be done optimally.

So, aptitude is a natural ability to get knowledge or skill, which can be useful generally relatively. For example, general intellectual aptitude and special academic aptitude. Special aptitude is also known by the talent.

Aptitude and ability can determine someone achievement. Someone who has talented in mathematics, he can be approximated that will be able to achieve high performance in the sector. So, achievement constitutes the phenomenon from the aptitude and ability. The good achievement in an area reflects the high aptitude in that sector.

In the opposite, hanged in the balance that talented someone can achieve high performance. Some factors can be determination as how far someone aptitude can be materialized. Some of those are established by the environment, like opportunity, available tools, family supports, family social aspects, economic aspects, mansions, in the city or in the village, and so on. Some factors are determined by internal self of that person, like the interest of a surface, desirability to achieve success, and the perseverance to solve the problem which can be appeared. How far someone can achieve success, is much depended on their motivation to be success, beside their natural aptitude.

  • Who is the gifted?

The law about Education for Gifted Children United States explains that the gifted are the children which identified have a high ability, both the real or just potential, in the wide of intellectually, creativity, specific intelligence, leadership or arts, in the pre-education school level, elementary school, and junior high school.

The gifted child, based on the definition of US Office and Education (1971), as the children who have been identified by the professional that can confer a high achievement because of their prominent ability. Those children need an education program which is differentiated and or services in outboard of the usual school program scope, to create their contribution for their self and for the society. Those abilities, both potential and which has been real, include general intellectual ability, specific academic ability, thinking creative and productive ability, one broad arts ability, and psychomotor ability (Martinson, 1974).

  • The gifted characteristics

How can we know that they are gifted? In the Conni M. Eales’s (1983) book, Raising Your Talented Child submits some important questions, some those are:

  1. Are they never been satisfied in their pretension for knowing everything?
  2. Are they having many treasury words from the other child?
  3. Can they catch more than one side of situation or problems?
  4. Are they prefer the more difficult games and something challenging?
  5. Are they having a good memorize and incisive observation?

This question represents how we can differentiate the children who are gifted or not. It’s indeed so, many experts have arranged the list of variation the gifted characteristics. But this cannot be significant that every gifted has all of those characteristics, because everyone is unique and doesn’t have the same personality exactly. However, there are some tendencies or general characteristics which the same they have. Based on Vernon’s opinion (1997) for example, although the physical and cognitive development are not really explicit as the sign of special quality of mental, if a yard, they are normal in physically and motoric development. And based on Parker’s opinion (1975), the gifted doing more active and more care about their environment. Although some exception always is, like belated in their motoric development.

Renzulli and friends (1981) from their research concluded that the characteristics of gifted made reference to these three:

  1. Higher ability from average people
  2. Creativity
  3. Responsibility of the duty


How far the child can be expected as gifted actually depends on the tie to those three characteristics. Every part has an important role which able for determining. This is what I can share to you, sorry if I have many mistakes in the sentences, it’s because I have just started to write in English again after long time. I just want to practice my English skill. Please give me notes for better writing.

Author: Queen Rahmah RZ

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