INTELLIGENCE REFRAMED by Howard Gardner

INTELLIGENCE REFRAMED

Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century

KIRKUS REVIEW

A further examination of the impact of the influential concept Gardner introduced in Multiple Intelligences (1993), and an introduction to three new (non-IQ) intelligences. Harvard University educator, psychologist, and MacArthur fellow Gardner reinforces his theory that we learn and perform through a number of intelligences. The standard, narrow definition, he avers, confuses the notion of intelligence with a specific type of measurable scholastic performance. Optimistic that the 21st century will continue to usher in inventive ways of measuring a fuller sense of the mind’s potential, Gardner reviews and refines his original definition of 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.” Since each of us has a unique blend of skills and aptitudes, we all have the potential to change our culture. And it is the role of education to tap intelligences not measured in the S.A.T. Schools must take the different human skills into account, and education must provide “for an enhanced understanding of our several worlds—the physical world, the biological world, the world of human beings, the world of human artifacts, and the world of the self.” Because Gardner believes teachers must learn about each student’s background, strengths, anxieties, and goals, they should remain with the same students for several years. No educational decisions, he suggests, can be made without an up-to-date profile of each individual student. Learning should involve tasks that call on a range of abilities. The results of the 41 US schools that have been applying MI theory for at least three years bolster Gardner’s thesis, with 78% of the schools reporting standardized test improvements. Enlarging his original eight intelligences, Gardner here proposes the idea of three new intelligences: naturalist, spiritual, and existential. A significant broadening of our understanding of intelligence and pedagogy that may expose self-professed intellectuals as merely geeks.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1999
ISBN: 0-465-02610-9
Page count: 288pp
Publisher: Basic
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 1999




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