Multiple Intelligence: How can it help?

Updated: Apr 6, 2020

We all know too well that Einstein was a school dropout, so was Ambani, and so was the case with Sachin. We have many successful people who were school or college dropouts. Have you ever wondered why?

Schools and colleges didn’t actually tap the different aspects of intelligence that they had. In other words, the fish was tested for its ability to climb a tree and not to gauge its ability to swim. These successful people are the living examples of the existence of multiple intelligence. It does not include the marks one score in the exams, but goes beyond to include different types of intelligence that human beings have.

The power of the human brain has been a topic of debate since ages. What can and can’t the human brain do? Are we using our brains 100%? That was when the need to assess the capacity of the brain came into play. Alfred Binet, a French Psychologist designed the first intelligence test. Since then, many renowned psychologists and scientists have added many theories to understand the human intelligence.

Howard Gardner, in his book the ‘Frames of Mind’ in 1983 wrote about the theory of multiple intelligence.  He proposes that there are more than 8 different intelligences. He suggested that the genetic factors, environment and cultures, determine how these intelligences work together and determine which of them are fully developed. The different multiple intelligence includes musical intelligence, visual-spatial intelligence, linguistic intelligence, logical-mathematical intelligence, bodily-kinesthetic intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, intrapersonal intelligence, and naturalistic intelligence.

  • When you listen to a song, if you can identify the rhythm, sing along and replicate the tune with a new rhythm, then your musical intelligence is high.

  • People who score 100/100 in every math test/ exam/ quiz, love puzzles, ask questions about the cosmic are the ones whose logical and mathematical intelligence are highly developed. Remember, Math is a subject and not an intelligence.

  • People with high Logical intelligence perform well in Math easily.

  • There are ones who can speak to strangers and make friends and influence people around them, they exhibit high levels of interpersonal intelligence.

  • People who are extremely good making sculptures, paintings, creative work, intricate hand work like that of a heart surgeon or even use their body to express themselves through sports, have high levels of bodily kinesthetic intelligence.

  • Ones who love to read, write and are excellent with words are the linguistically intelligent individuals.

  • Ones who love to spend time with themselves, introspective, motivated and intuitive are the ones with intrapersonal intelligence.

  • The individuals who love to build structures, draw, remember and navigate routes easily, of course without Google’s help and think in terms of space are the visual spatial intelligent individuals.

  • People with an ability to recognize and categorize plants and animals are the ones with naturalistic intelligence.

Researchers have connected the multiple intelligences to the characteristics required for each of the careers. Each one of us, have all these different intelligences in varying degrees. One may high levels of linguistic, followed by interpersonal intelligence and least degree of musical intelligence. It varies from person to person, the exposure they have had and the genes. It is important to have a good combination of intelligences in order to excel in the career path one choses.

For instance, a Youtuber, needs to have Visual-Spatial intelligence as well as have Logical-Mathematical intelligence. By understanding the different intelligences, we have, we CAN make better career choices.

Here is a list of a few career paths one can choose from based on the dominance of the area of intelligence:

  • Musical Intelligence: musician, music teacher, music therapist, music director, choir conducto

  • Visual-Spatial Intelligence: engineer, architect, urban planner, graphic designer, artist, interior decorator, photographer, pilot

  • Linguistic Intelligence: journalist, author, blogger, orator, speech therapist, radio or Video Jockey, Stand up Comedian

  • Logical-Mathematical Intelligence: chartered accountant, mathematician, scientist, statistician, computer analyst

  • Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence: dancer, surgeon, actor, mechanic, forest ranger, jewelry designer, physical therapist

  • Interpersonal Intelligence: manager, doctor, teacher, administrator, psychologist, nurse, public relations person, social activist

  • Intrapersonal Intelligence: psychologist, therapist, counselor, entrepreneur

  • Naturalist Intelligence: botanist, astronomer, wildlife illustrator, meteorologist, chef, geologist, landscape architect

Let us take Akash as an example. He has high linguistic intelligence and not so great naturalistic and kinesthetic intelligence. Akash decides to take up the career of a chef. Working behind the scenes in the kitchen with little human interaction will be a poor use of his Linguistic intelligence. Moreover, his efficiency and ability to use his physical power to cook [ bodily-kinesthetic intelligence ], as well as the ability to recognize and use the right ingredients [ naturalistic intelligence], are on the lower end. So being a chef may not make him love his Mondays anymore.

Even today, society views intelligence in terms of the percentage one scores in their board exams, the degrees they have and so on. This is clearly a lopsided effect that is obsolete and needs a makeover. We spend 40-60 years of our lives, working. So let us use our intelligence to make the right career choices to define success.

Now that you have read the article on multiple intelligence, let us see how you sort the different intelligence with the different career paths. Would you like to know your Multiple Intelligences? You can take the Yellow Collar Assessment and get yourself a similar report.

What careers are most suitable for people with high intelligence in the following areas?

  •                         Intrapersonal Intelligence

  •                         Musical Intelligence

  •                         Visual-Spatial Intelligence

  •                          Linguist Intelligence

  •                          Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence

What specific multiple intelligence is dominant for the people in the following careers?

  •            Ethical Hacker

  •            Radio Jockey

  •            Software Engineer

  •            Stand up Comedian

  •            Equestrian

  •            Special Educator

  •             Life Coach

  •             RC Racer

  •             Vlogger  

Dr.Meenu Mary Margaret


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