Selasa, 31 Agustus 2010

Howard Gardner's influential theory of multiple intelligences

Over the last decade, Howard Gardner's influential theory of multiple intelligences has almost revolutionized the way many psychologists and educators think of intelligence. For almost a century psychometricians, or intelligence testers, had seen it as a fixed trait—IQ tests demonstrated that you were either "smart," "normal," or "deficient." Gardner, on the other hand, has argued that intelligence is multifaceted and dynamic—expanding far beyond the linguistic and logical capacities that are traditionally tested and valued in schools.
In his latest book, Intelligence Reframed: Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century, Gardner is careful to emphasize the cultural—as opposed to the purely genetic—factors that shape an individual's intellectual development:
I now conceptualize an intelligence as a biopsychological potential to process information that can be activated in a cultural setting to solve problems or create products that are of value in a culture...intelligences are not things that can be seen or counted. Instead, they are potentials—presumably, neural ones—that will or will not be activated, depending upon the value of a particular culture, the opportunities available in that culture, and the personal decisions made by individuals and/or their families, school-teachers, and others. (Gardner 1999)
Gardner currently identifies eight intelligences, all of which he considers "part of our birthright." However, he adds that "no two people have exactly the same intelligences in the same combination." The eight intelligences are linguistic, logical, musical, spatial, bodily kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalistic. The extent to which the various intelligences develop depends, to a significant extent, on the individual's education and culture.

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