Multiple intelligences

Multiple intelligences

Intelligence! A word that many of us use to define the abilities and capabilities of self or someone else, the extent to which one can understand and...

Intelligence! A word that many of us use to define the abilities and capabilities of self or someone else, the extent to which one can understand and grasp a point. In fact, the dictionary defines intelligence as the ability to collect and acquire and apply knowledge and skills. In psychology, there is any number of definitions as there are experts who study it. Simply put, one way however, is that intelligence is the ability to learn about, learn from, understand, and interact with one's environment. Technically, for a long time now, measuring one's IQ (Intelligence Quotient) has been a way of estimating how well one would do in any test or exam or in general in education and career and life. There was just one type of intelligence and that defined a person's future. That if one couldn't do well in Mathematics and Science and studies, one was certain to not be able to succeed. Until 1983 when Howard Gardner proposed the theory of multiple intelligences in his book. He ideated that intelligence differentiates into specific sensory abilities rather than seeing it as one dominating general ability. Today, various organizations understand that individuals have different types of skills and abilities, each giving them an edge on a certain type of intelligence and once organizations can learn to tap into this intelligence, they can derive the best out of the individual. Even for individuals this is an opportunity to understand self and sometimes even choose the appropriate career paths. Here is a glimpse into the 7 multiple intelligences Howard Gardner first suggested:
A Logical-Mathematical Intelligence:
This is the capacity to use numbers effectively and reason well. Someone who has this kind of intelligence is able to see cause and effect really well; also, they are able to identify a problem and solve it right there on the spot. People with this intelligence think by reasoning, and they love experimenting, questioning, figuring out logical puzzles, and calculating. These individuals can perform mental arithmetic calculations, create a process to measure something difficult, analyse how a machine works, create a process; devise a strategy to achieve an aim, assess the value of a business or a proposition, etc. From accountants, bankers, bookkeepers, economists, computer software programmers and developers, to mathematicians, scientists and doctors, all need a good ability of logical-mathematical intelligence.
Spatial-Visual Intelligence:
This is the brain's ability to perceive and interpret visual stimuli. In other words, it's how our minds process what we see. Although not very recognized, spatial intelligence is very important in the arts and in everyday life. The way that one visually perceives and interprets the world around us is an important quality to have. In the arts, the ability to transfer a vision to a painting, sculpture, or film is a key quality. Architects, interior designers, painters, photographers, engineers, sculptors and pilots need a good ability of spatial intelligence.
A Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence: This can be defined as the is expertise in using one's whole body to express ideas and feelings such as actors, dancers and sportsmen demonstrate or the ability to use one's hands to produce or transform things such as sculptors and artisans. This involves most of the physical sensations including dancing, running, jumping, sports, building things, role plays, drama, hands-on learning, etc. From actors, dancers and athletes to mimes, jewellers, inventors and therapists, all need a good ability of bodily-kinesthetic intelligence.
A Musical Intelligence:
This means that one can distinguish the sounds around them and that they have the ability to make their own melodies. Even if one is only singing a song or making music, one are using your musical intelligence! Through this, one can perceive, discriminate, transform and express all kinds of musical forms. From song writers, conductors, singers, musical actors to sound engineers, music teachers, composers and performers need a good ability of musical intelligence.
A Interpersonal Intelligence:
This is just about understanding other people. It's an ability we all need, but is at a premium if you are a teacher, clinician, salesperson, or a politician. Anybody who deals with other people has to be skilled in the interpersonal sphere. These people enjoy giving and receiving feedback, understanding other's feelings, person-to-person communication, group rules and activities amongst other things. Administrators, salesmen, teachers, therapists, politicians, managers and leaders need a good ability of interpersonal intelligence.
A Intrapersonal Intelligence:
This is self-knowledge and the ability to act adaptively on the basis of that knowledge. This intelligence includes having an accurate picture of oneself (one's strengths and weaknesses), awareness of one's moods and desires, and the capacity for self-discipline, self-understanding, and self-esteem. Essentially, it's how well one knows self. Entrepreneurs, psychiatrists, researchers, theologians, teachers and philosophers, all need a good ability of intrapersonal intelligence Later, Gardner added on Naturalistic Intelligence or Existential Intelligence i.e. to do with nurturing and relating information to one's natural surroundings, i.e. a proposed spiritual or religious intelligence as possible additional types. However the above 7 are the basic tangible intelligences with which one can create and shape one's futures. Know your intelligences... Create your career... You have the power!
Revathi Turaga is an International Trainer and Inspirational Speaker.
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