Howard Gardner's Multiple Intelligence Theory


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This presentation is about Howard Gardner's Multiple Intelligence Theory, its pros and cons and its implications for instruction.

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Howard Gardner's Multiple Intelligence Theory

  1. 1. Howard Gardner’s
  2. 2.   Ability or abilities to acquire and use knowledge for solving problems and adapting to the world (Woolfolk, 2008). Most early theories about the nature of intelligence involved one or more of the following 3 themes: (1) the capacity to learn; (2) the total knowledge a person has acquired; and (3) the ability to adapt successfully to new situations and to the environment in general.
  3. 3.     Multiple Intelligence Theory expands our definition of intelligence. There are at least 8 separate intelligences. Gardner stresses that there may be more kinds of intelligence- 8 intelligence is not a magic number. Gardner speculated that there may be a spiritual intelligence and existential intelligence – the abilities to contemplate big questions about the meaning of life (2003). 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Linguistic (verbal) Musical Spatial Logical-Mathematical Bodily-Kinesthetic (movement) Interpersonal (understanding others) Intrapersonal (understanding self) Naturalist (observing and understanding natural and human-made patterns and systems).
  4. 4. (Source: From Educational Psychology (Figure, p.126 by A. Woolfolk, 2008)
  5. 5. Individuals may excel in 1 of these 8 areas, but have no remarkable abilities in the other 7.  Gardner (1998, 2003) contends that an intelligence is the ability to solve problems and create product or outcomes that are valued by a culture.  Varying cultures and eras of history place different values on the 8 intelligences. 
  6. 6.  A naturalist intelligence is critical in farming culture, whereas verbal and mathematical intelligences are important in technological cultures.  Gardner believes that intelligence has a biological base. base  An intelligence is “a biological and psychological potential; that potential is capable of being realized to a greater or lesser extent as a consequence of the experiential, cultural, and motivational factors that affect a person” (1998, p.62).
  7. 7.  Pros  All students will be seen as     successful. All different talents of students will be appreciated. A variety of instructional practices are used. Lessons are planned with more thought. Meets individual needs better.  Cons  More time is needed for lessons.  Assessing students' learning could be cumbersome.  Uniting a staff would be difficult.  More supplies would be needed.
  8. 8.    Gardner’s multiple intelligences theory has not received wide acceptance in the scientific community, eventhough it has been embraced by many educators. Some critics suggest that several intelligences are really talents (bodily-kinesthetic skill, musical ability) or personality traits (interpersonal ability). Other “intelligences” are not new at all.
  9. 9. Many researchers have identified verbal and spatial abilities as elements of intelligence.  The 8 intelligences are not independent; there are correlations among the abilities.  Logical-mathematical and spatial intelligences are highly correlated (Sattler, 2001). So, these “separate abilities” may not be separate after all.  Recent evidence linking musical and spatial abilities has prompted Gardner to consider that there may be connections among the intelligences (Gardner, 1998). 
  10. 10.     Gardner (1998, 2003) has responded to critics by identifying a number of myths and misconceptions about multiple intelligences theory and schooling. One is that intelligences are the same as learning styles (characteristic approaches to learning and studying. Another misconception is that multiple intelligences theory disproves the idea of g (general knowledge). Gardner does not deny the existence of a general ability, but does question how useful g is as an explanation for human achievements.
  11. 11. An advantage of Gardner’s perspective is that it expands teachers’ thinking about abilities and avenues for teaching, teaching but the theory has been misused.  Some educators embrace a simplistic version.   They include every “intelligence” in every lesson, no matter how inappropriate.
  12. 12.  Each individual can be intelligent in their own way.  Each human can have a special talent or intelligence that makes them unique and special.  This theory opened peoples eyes to the short comings of the IQ tests and many other similar assessments.
  13. 13.  Armstrong, Thomas (1994). Multiple Intelligence In the Classroom  Gardner, Howard (2006,). Multiple Intelligences: The Theory in Practice. er&dq=multiple+intelligence+theory&hl=en&ei=RVaCTrjrLYPMgQeGtsw 6&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CDIQ6AEwAQ#v =onepage&q=multiple%20intelligence%20theory&f=false  Woolfolk, Anita (2008). Educational Psychology