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Howard Gardners Theory of Multiple Intelligences

Cardinal OHara InIn-Service 1/19/2007

Definition of Intelligence
Human intelligence has the following characteristics: o A set of skills that enable a person to resolve genuine problems encountered in life. o The ability to create an effective product or offer a service that is valued in a culture. o The potential for recognizing or creating problems, thereby establishing the necessity for the new knowledge.

Principles of Multiple Intelligence Theory


Intelligence is not singular: intelligences are multiple. Every person is a unique blend of dynamic intelligences.


Principles of Multiple Intelligence Theory


Intelligences vary in development, both within and among individuals. All intelligences are dynamic.


Principles of Multiple Intelligence Theory


Multiple intelligences can be identified and described. Every person deserves opportunities to recognize and develop the multiplicity of intelligences.


Principles of Multiple Intelligence Theory


The use of one of the intelligences can be used to enhance another intelligence. Personal background density and dispersion are critical to knowledge, beliefs, and skills in all intelligences.


Linguistic Intelligence
Linguistic intelligence (or verbalverballinguistic) is the ability to use with clarity the core operations of language. People with highly developed linguistic intelligence are sensitive to the meaning of words. They have the capacity to follow rules of grammar, and, on carefully selected occasions, to violate them with good effect.

At a somewhat more sensory level, linguistic intelligence is a sensitivity to the sounds, rhythms, inflections, and meters of words-words-the ability which can make even poetry in a foreign tongue beautiful to hear. Linguistic intelligence is also a sensitivity to the different functions of language-language--its its potential to excite, convince, stimulate, convey information, or simply to please.

People who exhibit developed linguistic intelligence include:


Poets Politicians Authors Teachers Reporters Lecturers Speakers Attorneys TalkTalk -show hosts

Logicalogical-Mathematical Intelligence
Logical-Mathematical Logicalintelligence is logical and mathematical ability as well as scientific ability. Abstraction is fundamental, reasoning is complex, and problemproblem-solution is natural. Order and sequence are significant. There is a drive to know causality as well as the explication of existence. existence.


People who exhibit developed logicallogical -mathematical intelligence include:


Mathematicians Engineers Physicists Researchers Astronomers Scientists


Naturalistic Intelligence
Naturalistic intelligence is the ability to understand, relate to, categorize, classify, comprehend, and explain the things encountered in the world of nature.


People who exhibit developed naturalistic intelligence include:


Farmers Ranchers Hunters Gardeners Animal handlers Botanists Geologists


Musical (Musical(Musical-rhythmic) Intelligence

Musical intelligence (or MusicalMusicalrhythmic) is the ability to use the core set of musical elements-elements-pitch, rhythm, and timbre (understanding the characteristic qualities of a tone). There may be a hierarchy of difficulty involved in various roles, e.g., listening p performance p composition.


People who exhibit developed musical intelligence include:


Singers Composers Instrumentalists Conductors People who enjoy, understand, use, create, perform, and appreciate music and/or elements of music

(Visual(Visual -)Spatial Intelligence

Spatial intelligence (or visualvisualspatial) is the capacity to perceive the world accurately, and to be able to recreate one's visual experience. A person with a good sense of direction or the ability to move and operate well in the world would indicate spatial intelligence.

Visual-spatial intelligence entails a Visualnumber of loosely related capacities, such as:


the ability to recognize instances of the same element the ability to recognize transformations of one element in another the capacity to conjure up mental imagery and then to transform that imagery the ability to produce a graphic likeness of spatial information

People who exhibit developed spatial intelligence include:


Sailors Engineers Surgeons Sculptors Painters Cartographers Architects


BodilyBodily -Kinesthetic Intelligence

Bodily-Kinesthetic intelligence is Bodilycontrol of one's bodily motions and the ability to handle objects skillfully.


People who exhibit developed bodilybodily -kinesthetic intelligence include:


Actors Dancers Swimmers Acrobats Athletes Jugglers Instrumentalists Artisans


InterInter -Personal Intelligence

Inter-personal intelligence is the Interability to notice and make distinctions among other individuals and, in particular, among their moods, temperaments, motivations, and intentions.


People who exhibit developed interinter -personal intelligence include:


Politicians Religious leaders Counselors People in the helping professions


IntraIntra -Personal Intelligence

Intra-Personal intelligence is the Intraability to form an accurate model of oneself, and to use that model to operate effectively in life.


People who exhibit developed intraintra -personal intelligence include:


Novelists Therapists Sages Psychologists Philosophers


Existential Intelligence

Existential Intelligence is sensitivity and capacity to tackle deep questions about human existence.



People who exhibit developed existential intelligence include: Theologians Philosophers Spiritual advisors


Intelligences Being Examined


Spiritual Intelligence Moral Intelligence


Curricular Implications

All intelligences are needed to function in society Educators need to reach out to a broader range of skills and talents A deeper understanding of curriculum takes place when more intelligences are incorporated Can we facilitate interconnections between/among intelligences?

Incorporate the Theory

Allowing opportunities for assessment that allows students to use their stronger intelligences can be an indicator of their grasp of the material


Incorporate the Theory

Portfolios, independent projects, journals, and other creative projects allows for student choice and therefore interest in creating. Material learned and applied in an authentic situation may have greater learning impact.

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