John Curtis Gowan

John Curtis Gowan

John Curtis Gowan (May 21, 1912 – December 2, 1986) was a psychologist who studied, along with E. Paul Torrance , the development of creative capabilities in children and gifted populations.


John Curtis Gowan was born May 21, 1912 in Boston , Massachusetts . Graduating from Thayer Academy , Braintree, Massachusetts , in 1929, John Gowan was only 17 when he entered Harvard University , earning his undergraduate degree four years later. A master’s degree in mathematics followed; he was moved to Culver , Indiana , where he was employed as a counselor and mathematics teacher at Culver Military Academy from 1941 to 1952. Earning a doctorate from UCLA , he became a member of the founding faculty atCalifornia State University at Northridge , where he taught as a professor of Educational Psychology from 1953 until 1975, when he retired with emeritus status.

Dr. Gowan est devenu interested in gifted children partner after the Russians Gained superiority in space with the 1957 launch of Sputnik . He formed the National Association for Gifted Children the following year. He was the executive director and president from 1975 to 1979 and wrote more than 100 articles and fourteen books on gifted children, teacher evaluation, child development , and creativity .

While at Northridge, he Developed a program to campus Train counselors, Was Nominated in 1973 as outstanding professor, and HAD-been a counselor, researcher, Fulbright lecturer, and visiting professor at various schools Including the University of Singapore , the University of Canterbury in Christchurch , New Zealand , The University of Hawaii , and Connecticut State College . He was a fellow of the American Psychological Association and a colleague of the Creative Education Foundation .

In addition to his work in the field of psychology , he also has an interest in psychic (or psychedelic ) phenomena as it relates to human creativity. His work in this area was inspired by the writings of Aldous Huxley and Carl Jung . Based on His work in creativity and with gifted children, Dr. Gowan Developed a model of mental development That derived from the work of Jean Piaget and Erik Erikson , drank aussi included adult development beyond the ordinary adult Successes of career and familybuilding, extending into the emergence and stabilization of extraordinary development and the mystical states of consciousness. He Described the Entire spectrum of available states in His classic Trance Art & Creativity (1975), ict with different Modalities of spiritual and aesthetic expression. He also devised a test for self-actualization , (as defined by Abraham Maslow ), called the Northridge Developmental Scale .

Dr. Gowan died on December 2, 1986. John Gowan Jr. of Albany, NY, and Ann Gowan Curry, of Anchorage, Alaska and his second wife Jane Thompson Gowan. His godson, Cameron Matheson Scott blood at his memorial service which was attended by friends and colleagues.


Dr. Gowan was the author or coauthor of over 100 articles and fourteen books including:

  • Creativity and Its Education Implication – 1967.
  • Education of the Ablest – 1971.
  • The Guidance of Exceptional Children – 1972.
  • The Development of the Creative Individual – 1972.
  • Development of the Psychedelic Individual – 1974.
  • Trance, Art & Creativity – 1975.
  • Operations of Increasing Order – 1980.
  • Creativity: Its Educational Implications 2nd Ed. – 1981.
  • Enveloped in Glory – 1982.

External links



  1. Gowan, JC, Development of the Psychedelic Individual , (info from backcover biography), 1974.