Back when I was studying in elementary and all throughout out college, I have always thought that intelligent people are the only ones who excel in Math, Science and English subjects. That’s the kind of society I grew up in. People who do well in art and creative department and such are only regarded as talented and never once called intelligent. People who can’t speak English well is being mocked and made fun of and the people who speak the language well are regarded as the intelligent one. I grew up with that notion but as I have become independent and was thrown out to the outside world of the school, my ideology with a lot of things have greatly changed.
What have I learned?
First, let’s talk about the theories. There were a lot of it actually. This module has taught me that there were two most prominent and still an ongoing debate about the theory of intelligence. One is from Spearman who noted that Intelligence is one general factor. He believed that there is one general factor where intelligence can be rooted from. The other theory is from Howard Gardner. Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences explains that intelligence can be dived into multiple categories and that it can’t be singled as one factor. Single or Multiple? The choice is yours. But for me, I support Gardner’s Theory. Intelligence is a broad subject/topic. People excel in different categories. You can dance well? Then you’re intelligent. You are good with music? Then you’re intelligent.
||Dancers, athletes, surgeons, crafts people
||The ability to use one’s physical body well.
||Sales people, teachers, clinicians, politicians, religious leaders
||The ability to sense other’s feelings and be in tune with others.
||People who have good insight into themselves and make effective use of their other intelligences
||Self-awareness. The ability to know your own body and mind.
||Poets, writers, orators, communicators
||The ability to communicate well, perhaps both orally and in writing, perhaps in several languages.
||The ability to learn higher mathematics. The ability to handle complex logical arguments.
||The ability to learn, perform, and compose music.
||The ability to understand different species, recognize patterns in nature, classify natural objects.
||Sailors navigating without modern navigational aids, surgeons, sculptors, painters
||The ability to know where you are relative to fixed locations. The ability to accomplish tasks requiring three-dimensional visualization and placement of your hands or other parts of your body.
This table is taken from http://otec.uoregon.edu/intelligence.htm
The table above shows the divisions of Multiple Intelligence. This theory can greatly help students in enhancing their talents so that later on, they can use it, especially in choosing the right career path.
After learning about Gardner’s Theory, memories in my senior year in high school came flashing by. I was 15 then and I was already prepped up to plan for my future. Just like any other struggling adolescents, I was not fully ready yet at that time. I was not one of the fortunate teens who knew what they wanted to do in life at the early age. It was such a difficult time for me. I haven’t known what I really wanted to do. Imagine if this theory was presented to me at the time. It could’ve helped me greatly. But, it’s all in the past now and there’s no point dwelling on it. All is well now.
Now that I’ve learned so much about intelligence in this chapter, I will definitely use Gardner’s Theory of intelligence to discover what other things I can do and enhance it. I will definitely share this theory with my niece. So, she can have this knowledge that I didn’t have when entering college.
Another realization that I’ve had about intelligence is something that I can greatly use in real life and use t motivate myself more. Intelligence doesn’t guarantee success in life. There actually many research that can prove this statement. It is a fact. Growing up, I have always been intimated by intelligence, thinking that “It’s okay, I’ve accepted it. She will and can do better than me. She’s more intelligent. She will, for sure, succeed”. And that’s not the case. It is a big factor, yes, but there are variables that can determine one’s life success. Intelligence alone won’t take you to that goal. Lewis Terman noted that personality traits such as goal-orientation, self-confidence, and perseverance are important factors too in determining one’s success. In other words, we also need to grind. Push ourselves to the limits to reach what we want to reach. I hope this motivates you.
P.S. I just want to leave this quote here:
“More important than what a student can do, is what a student is willing to do”
-Kappe, R. & van der Flier, H. Eur J Psychol Educ (2012)
PPS. Let me ask you, what are you willing to do to succeed in this online course? Just something to ponder on.