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Change is Intelligence from William Stern to Dr. Howard Gardner

                Everyone understands the word intelligence, but do they truly understand the concept or is it just something people are or are not throughout history.  The public believes that intelligence is just a way to say if some one is smart or smarter than someone else.  However, this definition only skims the top of the definition.  In honesty, Merriam-Webster (2008) defines intelligence in many ways: the act of reason, the act of understanding; the act of changing the environment and so much more.  Saying that definition is just about being smart is not all together right, but no completely wrong.

                The background of intelligence is a short history in relation to the world, but it has always been a highlight to many a research study.  In fact, it has only been 1912, that any form of intelligence testing has been intact.  Over the years, changes have been made many times to what intelligence is now.

History in Brief

In 1912, William Stern made history with his concept of intelligence testing.  The formula was used on the Binet study to find the intelligence score of the participated (History of Psychology, 2008).  The formula is as follows:

This formula was used periodically until 1916 when the Stanford-Binet intelligence test was available to the public.  Later, in 1939, Wechsler – Bellavue publicized their intelligence test which road on the coat tales of Sterns work in the early 1900’s (Barnard and Olivarez, 2007; History of psychology, 2008).

By 1983, the most current and used intelligence study came from the mind and research of Dr. Howard Gardner.  He did not destroy the concept of the Intelligent Quotient, but built up on the concept.  Instead of accepting that there are only two types of intelligence and two types of learning, Dr. Gardner created 7 layers of intelligence and learning in which he used to explain why people are intelligent in different ways.

Dr. Howard Gardner’s Theory Multiple Intelligence

Dr. Gardner knew that intelligence was more than just linguistic and mathematical.  He view that concept of intelligence as only using two variable to explain something that was more intricate and need more information about the things that influence intelligence and not just the two concepts to rate intelligence.  In fact, Dr. Gardner believes that brain and environment play a large role in the intelligence of a person or group of people (Understanding, 2005).  For example, what is important to a tribe in Nigeria will be different from the people of Manhattan, New York.  What is an important intelligence in Nigeria would probably be useless in Manhattan, New York.  Hence the environment does influence the type of intelligence that a people will find important.  Understanding that the difference in the environment will affect the way the brain collects material, falls in line with Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence Theory perfectly (Understanding, 2005).

The Seven Types of Intelligence of Dr. Howard Gardner

                The linguistic intelligence is often explained as the ability to use words and understand words to get what one needs in life or wants.  This intelligence is also associated with learning languages (Barnard & Olivarez, 2007; Understanding, 2005).

The logical-mathematical is the second type of intelligence to discuss only because these first two were the main concept of intelligence for years.  The logical-mathematical intelligence understands problems that rely on logical and deductive thinking.  Logical-mathematic intelligence works at defining of patterns both scientifically and mathematically and with great ease (Barnard & Olivarez, 2007; Understanding, 2005).

Body-Kinesthic is also a part of intelligence and is based on the idea that knowledge of how the body moves and why can help solve certain parts and actions in life (Barnard & Olivarez, 2007; Understanding, 2005).   This intelligence can be useful when trying to out maneuver someone such as in sports.

Musical intelligence is as important as logical-mathematic intelligence.   Musical intelligence helps to find rhythm and patterns in music.  These actions allow for hearing tone, pitch and compositing beautiful enthralling music (Barnard & Olivarez, 2007; Understanding, 2005).

Spatial intelligence is used by all people, sighted and non-signed.  This is the concept of understanding in the mind where everything is located and when in a particular situation can figure out a solution by visualizing either on paper in the mind (Barnard & Olivarez, 2007; Understanding, 2005).

The interpersonal and intrapersonal, while different have much in common as well.  Both of these intelligences deal with feelings.  The interpersonal intelligence is the understanding of how others feel.  The intrapersonal intelligence allows one to understand one’s own feelings and experiences.  Hence while they are listed separately they are basically one type of intelligence based on the concepts of emotions (Barnard & Olivarez, 2007; Understanding, 2005).

Over the years since 1983, Dr. Gardner has included several other types of intelligences such as moral intelligence, existentialist intelligence, and naturalist intelligence.  However, there needs to be a limit on the number of variables that can be associated with learning.  Of course, the sensory organs give much information, and personal experiences as well, but there are events in life that are not relied on to build intelligence, which is why in the beginning William Stern started with two types of intelligence.  Not because he did not under stand the connection, but because he wanted to limit the need to explain every action and thought as intellect.

Musical intelligence has always been my specialty.  I use the rhythms, pitches, tones, and patterns in music to help my mind retain information and focus on the tasks at hand.  When doing anything important music must be playing at least loud enough to drown out the outside noise and keep focused on my tasks.

References

Barnard, L., & Olivarez, A. (2007, December). Self-Estimates of Multiple, g Factor, and School-valued Intelligences. North American Journal of Psychology, 9(3), 501-510. Retrieved November 22, 2008, from Academic Search Premier Database.

History of Psychology. (2008). History in Psychology Online Dictionary.  Retrieved on November 22, 3008 from http://allpsych.com/timeline.html

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intelligence. (2008). In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary.  Retrieved November 22, 2008, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/intelligence

Understanding the Theory of Multiple Intelligences. (2005, November). Early Childhood Today, Retrieved November 22, 2008, from Academic Search Premier Database.

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