Can you imagine being tested on the basis of logic and language only to prove that you are smart? That your intelligence level will never change over time and that there only a prescribed number of “subjects” like maths, languages, science. They are the only subjects you can show your intelligence in. Can you imagine this? I am pretty sure you cannot. Howard Gardner Multiple Intelligences theory challenged this belief in 1983. He defined seven types of intelligence in his book Frames of Mind, published in 1983. He added two more in 1999 in his book Intelligence Reframed. So, overall, he proposed 9 multiple intelligences which can help us understand true intelligence of any individual.
- 9 Howard Gardner Multiple Intelligences
According to Howard Gardner, intelligence is:
- The ability to create an effective product or offer a service that is handy for others around.
- Few skills that help in problem-solving.
- The skill of researching for a solution to problems.
- Everyone possesses varying amounts of intelligence.
- Each person has a different intellectual composition.
- Each intelligence is located in different parts of the brain, therefore they may work together or they may work independently.
- These bits of intelligence differentiate us from animals.
9 Howard Gardner Multiple Intelligences
1. Visual-Spatial Intelligence
The first of the 9 multiple intelligences is Visual-Spatial Intelligence. People with visual-spatial intelligence enjoy reading and writing for fun. They are good at solving puzzles. These kids can interpret pictures, graphs and charts well. They also recognize patterns very easily and even enjoy drawing, painting and visual arts. If your child is strong in visual-spatial intelligence then the good career choices for him/her are architecture, arts or even engineering.
2. Linguistic-Verbal Intelligence
The second intelligence that Howard Gardner mentioned in his multiple intelligence theory was Linguistic-Verbal Intelligence. People who are strong in linguistic-verbal intelligence remember written and spoken information well, they enjoy reading, debates and giving persuasive speeches. They are able to explain things well and often use humour while narrating stories. The potential career choices your child has if s/he is strong in linguistic-verbal intelligence are writing/journalism, law or even teaching!
3. Logical-Mathematical Intelligence
Logical-Mathematical Intelligence is that when a person has excellent problem-solving skills, enjoys thinking about abstract ideas, likes conducting scientific experiments and can even solve complex computations. If you believe your child has the characteristics of a person with strong logical-mathematical intelligence then he career options he could work to become a scientist, mathematician, computer programmer, engineer, or even an accountant. It is one of the most known type of intelligences as it is strongly linked to academic performance.
4. Bodily-Kinaesthetic Intelligence
The fourth of the 9 multiple intelligences is Bodily-Kinaesthetic Intelligence. Dancing and sports come naturally to People with bodily-kinaesthetic intelligence. They enjoy crafting things with their hands, have excellent physical coordination and remember things by doing, not hearing or seeing. If your child seems to have the characteristics listed above then s/he could become a dancer, a builder, a sculptor or even an actor!
5. Musical Intelligence
The fifth kind of multiple intelligence is Musical Intelligence, those who have strong musical intelligence are good at thinking in terms of patterns, rhythms and sounds. They have a strong appreciation for music and are often good at musical composition and performance. These people enjoy singing and playing musical instruments, recognize musical patterns and tones easily. They also have a rich understanding of musical structure, rhythm and notes, it also becomes easy for them to remember melodies and songs easily. If the child is strong in musical intelligence s/he could become musicians, composers, singers, music teachers and conductors.
6. Interpersonal Intelligence
Interpersonal Intelligence is the sixth type of multiple intelligence according to Howard Gardner. People who have strong interpersonal intelligence are good at understanding individuals and interacting with them. These people are skilled at assessing the emotions, motivations, desires and intentions of those around them. They can communicate well verbally and non-verbally. The students with this intelligence can see situations in a different light. They can resolve conflicts in a group setting and can create positive relationships with others. What could people do with high scores in interpersonal intelligence? They could become psychologists, philosophers, counsellors, salespersons and even politicians.
7. Intra-personal Intelligence
The seventh kind of multiple intelligence is Intrapersonal Intelligence. Individuals who are strong in this kind of intelligence are aware of their emotional states, feelings and motivations. They tend to enjoy self-reflection and assessing their personal strengths. Such people enjoy analysing theories and ideas, they have an excellent sense of awareness of themselves and understand the roots of their feelings. If you are a person who is good at this type of intelligence then you could look up to be a philosopher, a writer, a theorist or a scientist.
8. Naturalistic Intelligence
The eighth kind of multiple intelligence was an addition along with the ninth one which was introduced in the year 1999. The eighth one is called Naturalistic Intelligence. Such people are more in tune with nature and are often interested in nurturing, exploring nature and learning about new species. Such individuals are said to be highly aware of even the subtle changes to their environment.
These people are often found intrigued by subjects like botany, biology and zoology. They categorize and catalogue information easily. People with this intelligence type enjoy adventures like hiking, camping and even gardening. They dislike learning about things that seem to have no connection with nature. Such individuals could enjoy a career as a biologist, a conservationist, a gardener or even as a farmer.
9. Existential intelligence
The ninth and the last kind of multiple intelligence is existential intelligence. Such people have the sensitivity and the capacity to tackle deep questions about human existence, such as the meaning of life, why is it that we die, how did we get where we are today. These questions that transcend perception are too serious and big to be perceived by the sensory systems. People with high existential intelligence perceive everyday lives and actions in a cosmic manner.
Gardner used IQ tests to measure the intelligence of the participants. The candidates have to satisfy a range of criteria and must include as a prerequisite, the ability to resolve obstacles and challenges. The judgement passed is more artistic in sense than scientific assessment.
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