Theory of MI by Harvard
Many of us are familiar with three general categories in which people learn:
• visual learners,
• auditory learners and
• kinesthetic learners.
These three are general and superficial categories, People have multiple kinds
of strengths and intelligences. As we are advancing in technology rigorously, we
must keep in mind that a rigorous research must also be continued to develop new
theories and hypothesis. Among these, the theory of multiple intelligences,
developed by Howard Gardner, Ph.D., Professor of Education at Harvard University
stands out as the most useful approach to integrated teaching practices and
pedagogical development of the students.
These intelligences (or competencies) relate to a person’s unique aptitude, set
of capabilities and ways they might prefer to demonstrate intellectual
The Nine Types of Intelligence
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.
2. 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.
3. Existential Intelligence (Spirit Smart)
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.
4. 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
5. 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
6. 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.
7. 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 directing 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.
8. 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.
9. 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
Gardner’s multiple intelligences theory can be used when designing instructions
to help students develop their strengths and to trigger their confidence to
develop areas in which they are not as strong. Parents must also make an effort
to get to know their child better to develop trust- relationship with them as
children are able to demonstrate and share their ideas when they are trusted, it
motivates students to be a "specialist” in their own way.