First published in 1983 and now available with a new introduction by the author, Gardner's trailblazing book revolutionized the worlds of education and psychology by positing that rather than a single type of intelligence, we have several--most of which are neglected by standard testing and educational methods.read more
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Reviews forFrames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences
I ran into many references to this book in 1998 when I was doing research on non-school-based education. I like to go to the source, so I bought the book and read it.Gardner's theory houses intelligence in 6 (or 7, depending on how you count it) domains, rather than in broad themes like memory or problem solving. He uses cross-cultural, prodigy and defect/injury examples to illustrate that a gifted musician may have a specifically musical memory, as opposed to a good memory that may be applied equally to numbers, poems or dance steps. The 6 domains are: linguistic, musical, logical-mathematical, spatial, bodily-kinesthetic and personal (personal is composed of interpersonal and intrapersonal).It certainly seems like either the Theory of Multiple Intelligences has permeated education, or education has favored similar ideas for a long time. College classrooms are rife with visual aids meant to supplement traditional lectures, and elementary schools with educational computer games meant to stimulate spatial reasoners. I suppose if I were going to continue down this path, I would research whether there's been any evidence that the theory can be applied to education with measurably successful results. Gardner admits at the end of the book that in 1983 there was no compelling evidence that tailoring educational material to the student's learning style worked any better than not. Perhaps I'll save that for a rainy day when I run out of reading material.The end of the book, on applying the theory to education, is a little wishy-washy. Gardner basically says that one should consider cultural context (duh) and form specific goals rather than "more education = better" (again, duh). He anticipated computers in classrooms changing the balance of the kinds of intelligence favored by society, and it has.read more
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