9 Types of Intelligence

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9 Types of Intelligence

Postby CornMaiden » Fri Aug 28, 2009 5:49 pm

All of us learn differently, be it book smarts, impirical learning, or just raw natural intelligence. All of us have seen people that were incredibly smart, intellectually, but missing the boat when it came to common sense or emotional sense/awareness. It amazes me how one can be so skewed in their different gifting of awareness/knowledge, or lack there of.

Below are 9 types of intelligence noted.

Which one do you think you are...and can those be improved or changed?

The Nine Types of Intelligence by Howard Gardner

1. Naturalist Intelligence (“Nature Smart”)

Designates the human ability to discriminate among living things (plants, animals) as well as sensitivity to other features of the natural world (clouds, rock configurations). This ability was clearly of value in our evolutionary past as hunters, gatherers, and farmers; it continues to be central in such roles as botanist or chef. It is also speculated that much of our consumer society exploits the naturalist intelligences, which can be mobilized in the discrimination among cars, sneakers, kinds of makeup, and the like.

2. Musical Intelligence (“Musical Smart”)

Musical intelligence is the capacity to discern pitch, rhythm, timbre, and tone. This intelligence enables us to recognize, create, reproduce, and reflect on music, as demonstrated by composers, conductors, musicians, vocalist, and sensitive listeners. Interestingly, there is often an affective connection between music and the emotions; and mathematical and musical intelligences may share common thinking processes. Young adults with this kind of intelligence are usually singing or drumming to themselves. They are usually quite aware of sounds others may miss.

3. Logical-Mathematical Intelligence (Number/Reasoning Smart)

Logical-mathematical intelligence is the ability to calculate, quantify, consider propositions and hypotheses, and carry out complete mathematical operations. It enables us to perceive relationships and connections and to use abstract, symbolic thought; sequential reasoning skills; and inductive and deductive thinking patterns. Logical intelligence is usually well developed in mathematicians, scientists, and detectives. Young adults with lots of logical intelligence are interested in patterns, categories, and relationships. They are drawn to arithmetic problems, strategy games and experiments.

4. Existential Intelligence

Sensitivity and capacity to tackle deep questions about human existence, such as the meaning of life, why do we die, and how did we get here.

5. Interpersonal Intelligence (People Smart”)

Interpersonal intelligence is the ability to understand and interact effectively with others. It involves effective verbal and nonverbal communication, the ability to note distinctions among others, sensitivity to the moods and temperaments of others, and the ability to entertain multiple perspectives. Teachers, social workers, actors, and politicians all exhibit interpersonal intelligence. Young adults with this kind of intelligence are leaders among their peers, are good at communicating, and seem to understand others’ feelings and motives.

6. Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence (“Body Smart”)

Bodily kinesthetic intelligence is the capacity to manipulate objects and use a variety of physical skills. This intelligence also involves a sense of timing and the perfection of skills through mind–body union. Athletes, dancers, surgeons, and craftspeople exhibit well-developed bodily kinesthetic intelligence.

7. Linguistic Intelligence (Word Smart)

Linguistic intelligence is the ability to think in words and to use language to express and appreciate complex meanings. Linguistic intelligence allows us to understand the order and meaning of words and to apply meta-linguistic skills to reflect on our use of language. Linguistic intelligence is the most widely shared human competence and is evident in poets, novelists, journalists, and effective public speakers. Young adults with this kind of intelligence enjoy writing, reading, telling stories or doing crossword puzzles.

8. Intra-personal Intelligence (Self Smart”)

Intra-personal intelligence is the capacity to understand oneself and one’s thoughts and feelings, and to use such knowledge in planning and directioning one’s life. Intra-personal intelligence involves not only an appreciation of the self, but also of the human condition. It is evident in psychologist, spiritual leaders, and philosophers. These young adults may be shy. They are very aware of their own feelings and are self-motivated.

9. Spatial Intelligence (“Picture Smart”)

Spatial intelligence is the ability to think in three dimensions. Core capacities include mental imagery, spatial reasoning, image manipulation, graphic and artistic skills, and an active imagination. Sailors, pilots, sculptors, painters, and architects all exhibit spatial intelligence. Young adults with this kind of intelligence may be fascinated with mazes or jigsaw puzzles, or spend free time drawing or daydreaming.

From: Overview of the Multiple Intelligences Theory. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and Thomas Armstrong.com

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Postby Bill Glasheen » Fri Aug 28, 2009 6:49 pm

I was aware of 8 dimensions of intelligence. The 9th dimension is new to me. But from the looks of it, they're just splitting one of the dimensions up.

It's never ceased to amaze me how some of my intellectually gifted friends in school could be so tone and rhythm deaf. That brand of intelligence has permeated both of my family lines, from the great aunt (mom's side) who was a Rockette to the uncle (dad's side) who was a professional musician. So often I become aware of single dimension deficits from intellectual endeavors (such as engineering graphics) to martial ones (the ability to work with a partner's timing).

Meanwhile, many of my fellow undergraduate classmates in engineering school were "tone deaf" to the verbal and interpersonal dimensions. There were days I wanted to quit (before getting into graduate school) because I felt like a fish out of water. Being good in a very narrow way often doesn't lead to a broadly successful life.

Good stuff!

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Postby Shana Moore » Fri Aug 28, 2009 7:00 pm

Interesting question CM!

I'm not a big fan of categorizing folks, but these are fascinating concepts to review! I tend to think most people have skills in most or all of these categories, but it's the mix that varies. Like any good recipe, variations in the mix can lead to many different flavours and some of them are palatable and pleasing and some leave us looking for a good strong drink to wash the taste away.

Also, our own perception of our personal mix may vary considerably from how others view our personal mix. I've known many people who thought thier language or interpersonal skills were far better than they actually were. I've also met some folks that, with focused persistence, improved thier "intelliegence" in areas. Which leads us to the whole nature vs nurture debate.

For myself, I believe I have high strength in naturalist, existential, interpersonal, linguistic, and intra-personal. I believe I have at least proficiency in the remaining areas:
logical-mathematical, musical, and bodily-kinesthetic.

I find it interesting that my perception is that those last three and the first are the most important for effective practice of martial arts. The other intelligences play a part, but those areas focus on awareness, timing, speed, and skill.

I'd be interested in other's perception of themselves, if they are willing to share (and I welcome constructive feedback on how "accurate" my own assessment of myself is :P ).

More interesting to note, I'd be interested in learning which of these intelligences others believe are key to effective practice of the martial arts.
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Postby chef » Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:50 pm

I think being both 'People Smart' and 'Body Smart' are very useful abilities, whether for karate or self preservation. It's essential that we learn to be aware of our environment and the people in it.

Those that are 'people smart' may have an innate ability to access the character of others. They can read people, discerning 'something is not right', potentially alerting themself to whether another is a potential 'bad guy'.

Others man sense when someone is hurting, psychologically or emotionally. One of the threads discussed a woman who had some deep emotional issues, when someone came too close to her or with necessary physical contact, via two man drills/sparring. The instructor picked on on this right a way and was able to talk with her on her inner conflicts she was battling.

Being 'Body Smart' is a gift every martial artist would covet. Who doesn't want the ability to flow from one move to another with no wasted motion, when sparring an opponent...the ability to time their attacks to an opponents blinking, breathing, dropping of hands, or whatever opens for an opportunity.

We watch our new students try to move through a kata, while stepping correctly, and include their breathing. What a challenge for a beginner. Some come in and are just naturals. They could rub their tummy, pat their head, and do a jig, all smoothly. Then we have our unco-ordinated individual that go over a kata a hundred times and just can't time it well, ending up looking like wind-up toys, struggling to make it work. That does take skill and many, many hours of practice if it doesn't come natural.

Those are the ones you wonder about, worrying if they get attacked, will they be able to put it together in a real life situation.

May we all be like an onion with multi-layers of abilities.

"Cry in the dojo, laugh in the battlefield"
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