There are a number of theories for learning which have been developed over the course of the last 30 years. One of the most interesting of these theories is the multiple intelligence theory. This is a theory which was developed by Howard Gardner in 1983, and it basically deals with numerous aspects of developmental psychology, as well as cognitive psychology.
Gardner spent a great deal of time interviewing many individuals, and they ranged from people who had suffered from strokes to geniuses, and those who were considered to be autistic. Based on his research, Gardner came up with seven forms of intelligence which could be identified. However, there are eight criteria that Gardner believes can be used to find these seven intelligences.
The eight criteria are the existence of savants, geniuses, and prodigies, the amount of isolation which is caused by damage to the brain, a distinguished collection of central operations, development stages which are comprised of an end state, being susceptible to the encoding of a symbol system, history and plausibility which is evolutionary, support which has been gained from psychological tasks, and support in the form of psychometric research.
When this theory was originally introduced, it allowed for seven intelligences which were separate. However, in 1999, two additional intelligences were added, bringing the total to nine. These nine intelligences are:
The theory of multiple intelligences is revolutionary in the sense that it challenges traditional measures of intelligence, which are much narrower. This theory is also highly important for those who are pursuing a lucrative career, and the reason for this is because by making use of this theory, it is possible for them to learn in areas they shine the most, and based on this information, they can choose a career which makes full use of their capabilities.
Using the Multiple Intelligences Theory to Your Advantage
Sun Tzu, a famous military strategist, is known for his saying that those who wished to be successful must be able to "know their enemies and know themselves". When you combine this quote with the fact that most individuals are their own greatest enemies, it becomes easy to see why making use of Gardner’s multiple intelligence theory can bring you great success in life.
In fact, the one thing which separates people who are successful from those who are not is that successful people have a tendency to choose career fields which maximize their innate capabilities. Whether or not they do this intentionally is beyond the scope of this article. However, by understanding your area of intelligence, and going into a field which makes full use of it, there is little that can stop you from becoming enormously successful.
If you have studied theories of learning, you are probably aware of the fact that previous theories for human intelligence argued that the intelligence of an individual would remain the same throughout the course of his/her lifetime, and that this intelligence could only be determined based on either logical or language based abilities. Gardner’s theory is much more logical than this, and appears to be a better representation of the "real" world.
Intelligence means more than just the ability to solve logical problems, or to have a highly developed linguistic ability. Instead, according to Gardner, intelligence involves the capacity to not only solve problems, but create them. In addition to this, intelligence also involves the ability to generate products or offer services which are highly valued within ones society.
What is revolutionary about Gardner’s theory is that every human being has every one of these intelligences to some degree. Second, every human being has an intelligence profile which is separate. Gardner argues that the educational system can be improved if the intelligence profiles of students are assessed, and activities are designed accordingly.
Make use of Gardner’s Theory to Gain Maximum Success in Your Life
Many people fail to succeed in life, not because they are unskilled or dumb, but because they have not identified and made use of their innate abilities. Society has often taught us that if you are not good in either a language or logical based area, you are unlikely to be successful in life. However, Gardner’s theory proves this to be incorrect.
According to his theory, every one of the nine intelligences can be found in a distinct region of the brain. Not only can these intelligences function together, but they can also function independently. Gardner believes that these nine intelligences encompass the total mental capacity of the collective human species. By making use of this theory, there is no limit to the success one can achieve in life, simply because they will first identify the area of intelligence, and to choose a career which maximizes it.