8 Intelligences: Are You a Jack of All Trades or a Master of One? | Howard Gardner


Currently I think there are eight intelligences
that I’m very confident about and a few more that I’ve bene thinking about. I’ll
share that with our audience. The first two intelligences are the ones which IQ tests
and other kind of standardized tests valorize and as long as we know there are only two
out of eight it’s perfectly fine to look at them. Linguistic intelligence is how well
you’re able to use language. It’s a kind of skill that poets have, other kinds of writers,
journalists tend to have linguistic intelligence, orators. The second intelligence is logical
mathematical intelligence. As the name implies logicians, mathematicians, scientists have
that kind of intelligence. They’re able to do mathematical proofs. They’re able
to do scientific reasoning and experimentation. And it’s great to have language and logical
intelligence because most tests really focus on that. And if you do well in those tests
as long as you stay in school you think you’re smart. But if you ever walk out into Broadway
or the highway or into the woods or into a farm you then find out that other intelligences
are at least this important. So the third intelligence is musical intelligence and that’s
the capacity to appreciate different kinds of musics, to produce the music by voice or
by an instrument or to conduct music. And people say well music is a talent. It’s
not an intelligence. And I say well why if you’re good with words is that an intelligence
but if you’re good with tones and rhythms and timbres nobody’s ever given me a good
answer which is why it makes sense to talk about musical intelligence. And at certain
cultures over history musical intelligence has been very important. The fourth intelligence
is spatial intelligence. That’s the intelligence which allows us to handle and work in space
that’s close by. A chess player would have spatial intelligence. A surgeon would have
spatial intelligence. But there’s another variety of spatial intelligence which we use
for a much broader navigation. That’s what an airplane pilot or a sea captain would have.
How do you find your way around large territory and large space. Similarly with the fifth
intelligence bodily kinesthetic intelligence it comes in two flavors. One flavor is the
ability to use your whole body to solve problems or to make things. And athletes and dancers
would have that kind of bodily kinesthetic intelligence. But another variety is being
able to use your hands or other parts of your body to solve problems or make things. A craft
person would have bodily kinesthetic intelligence even if they weren’t particularly a good
athlete or dancer. The sixth intelligence and seventh intelligence
have to do with human beings. Interpersonal intelligence is how you understand other people,
how you motivate them, how you lead them, how you work with them, how you cooperate
with them. Anybody at any workplace with other people needs interpersonal intelligence. Leaders
hopefully have a lot of interpersonal intelligence. But any intelligence can be used in a pernicious
way so the salesman that sells you something you don’t want for a price you don’t want
to pay, he or she has got interpersonal intelligence. It’s just not being used in a way that we
might prefer. The seventh kind of intelligence is difficult to assess but it’s very important.
It’s intrapersonal intelligence. It’s the understanding yourself. If we go back
a way in history and prehistory knowledge of yourself probably wasn’t that important
because people did what their parents or grandparents did whether they were hunters or fisherman
or craftspeople. But nowadays especially in developed society people lead their own lives.
We follow our own careers. We often switch careers. We don’t necessarily live at home
as we get older. And if you don’t have a good understanding of yourself you are in
big trouble. So that’s intrapersonal intelligence. The
eighth intelligence which I added some years ago is the naturalist intelligence. And that’s
the capacity to make important relevant discriminations in the world of nature between one plant and
another, between one animal and another. It’s the intelligence of the naturalist, the intelligence
of Charles Darwin. I missed it the first go around when I wrote about it but I tried to
atone by adding it to my list. And by the way you might say well but nature isn’t
so important anymore. But in fact everything we do in the commercial world uses our naturalist
intelligence. Why do I buy this jacket rather than another one? This sweater rather than
another one? One hair style rather than another? Those all make just the naturalist intelligence
because the brain is very adaptive. And when an old use of a brain center no longer is
relevant it gets hijacked for something new. So we’re all using our naturalist intelligence
even if we never walk out into the woods or into the savannah of East Asia. The two other
intelligences which I’m interested in, one of them is called the teaching or pedagogical
intelligence. The intelligence which allows us to be able to teach successfully to other
people. Now you could have two people who have exactly the same expertise and knowledge
in the field but one is a very good teacher and the other isn’t. That probably doesn’t
surprise individuals so much. But what got me fascinated was as young as two or three
kids already know how to teach. Now what does that mean?
You show a child how to do something let’s say a three or four year old and then you
ask the child to explain it to an older person or to a younger person. And even the three
or four year old will explain it very differently to a young person, will go through details,
point things and speak slowly. And with an older person it would be much more elliptical
and say well you do this and that and then you can figure it out. So that shows as young
as three let’s say we already have teaching intelligence. The other one is one which I
think is going to be difficult to prove to a skeptic but I call it existential intelligence.
And existential intelligence is the intelligence of big questions. Philosophical questions,
artistic questions. What does it mean to love? Why do we die? What’s going to be in the
future? My pet bird might have more musical intelligence. The rats who are scurrying around
the floor might have more spatial intelligence. But no other animals have existential intelligence.
Part of the human condition is to think about questions of existence. And I like to say
every five year old has existential intelligence because five year old are always asking why
this, why that. But the difference between a five year old
and a philosopher is the five year old doesn’t pay too much attention to the answer whereas
philosophers and other people who develop existential intelligence are really very interested
in how we attack questions like that. So again where there’s eight intelligences or ten
or twelve is less important to me than having broken the monopoly of a single intelligence
which sort of labels you for all time. I think if we lived forever we could probably
develop each intelligence to a very high degree. But life is very short and if you devote too
much attention to one intelligence you’re not going to have much time to work on other
kinds of intelligences. And so the big question is should you play to strength or should you
bolster weakness? And that’s a value judgment. Scientists cannot give you an answer to that.
If, for example, you want to be a jack of all trades and be very well rounded then probably
you’re going to want to nurture the intelligences which aren’t that strong. If on the other
hand you’re dead set on really coming to the top of some particular heap then you’re
probably going to find the intelligences that you’re strongest at and really push those.
And, you know, if a parent came to me and said well should we supplement or should we
accentuate I would say well tell me what you would like your child to do. Or better let
the child tell you what he or she wants to do rather than say well science says you should
do one or the other. I think it’s a question of values, not of science. Some people think there’s such a thing as humor intelligence. But, in fact, I don’t. I think humor intelligence is simply the operation of a logical intelligence in some realm like
human nature or physical nature or the workplace. And what happens is in humor there’s a certain
expectation and you flip that expectation so it’s logic but it’s logic that’s
played out in different kinds of ways. People had mentioned there’s such a thing as a
cooking intelligence, a humor intelligence and a sexual intelligence. And I quipped well
that can’t be intelligences because I don’t have any of them.

100 thoughts on “8 Intelligences: Are You a Jack of All Trades or a Master of One? | Howard Gardner

  1. YOURE AMAZING GARDNER BUT THIS THEORY NEEDS MORE EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE
    In the spanish-speaking world some dissidents accuse you of doing pseudoscience.
    http://efectomcguffin.blogspot.com.co/2015/07/pseudociencia-en-la-escuela-3-las.html?m=1
    Sólo español tho
    <3

  2. This guy does not dig the super intelligence of young kids, some are smarter than most adults if you have the empathy to read them. Unfortunately they are often destroyed by mishandling

  3. so if you choose to play to your strengths and you end up becoming affluent that would mean what exactly? but if you choose to shore up your weaknesses and you accomplish that but at the loss of gaining materialistically (and hence socially), how now should your success be viewed?

  4. Not one study has supported this idea: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/unique-everybody-else/201311/the-illusory-theory-multiple-intelligences

  5. I love this guy I couldn't say it better myself . I admire the thinking of this man . and his way of explaining it .

  6. All 5 year olds have existential intelligence because they're always asking "why?"

    So being curious is a whole different kind of intelligence now?

  7. What an absolute crock of shit. Just take literally anything that humans can do, then slap the word "intelligence" after it, and PRESTO! There's a new kind of "intelligence". Does this dipshit even know what words mean? Give it a month, he'll take someone who's given themselves brain damage from huffing all the glue they could get their hands on, and tell everyone they've got "intoxicant intelligence".

    How did this muppet manage to convince someone at Harvard to give him a job???

  8. Only logical reasoning ability is intelligence. The rest of those are different types of abilities, but the correct word for them is not intelligence.

  9. My strongest intelligence is the ability to spot bullshit when I see it. I'm quite gifted in that particular intelligence. It didn't take much to identify this video as being a load of crap.

  10. I always thought chess abilities belongs to the mathematical and logical intelligence but he says that this type of intelligence is Spacial

  11. I suck at math lol if someone tried to test it id immediately go "noop… move along… you'd just be wasting time don't bother" LOL i'm more a creative type and i'm pretty good at crafts too although not something i've honed enough as i want to but i can't draw or paint my distance perception isn't good enough for it, i'm not good with people usually but i do have some semi-leadership qualities in there, i'm a good Analytical Thinking and have good Visual Intelligence i'm quite adept at psycology, and i do like to teach people things if they're willing to listen i like to do that to help them although i get annoyed when they then don't take it seriously enough and keep it as life long knoledge and brush it off as just something irrelivant and silly so i don't teach things to just anyone, i'm good at singing too always have been and i think i could learn the piano pretty well i already had lessons once a week for 3 months once until i had to give it up and i did pretty well at it, good with technology, picking out colors, picking out my own clothes and accessories and i quite like placing things around the house too and picking out paint colors and matching decoration.

    I think a lot of things can be learned though even if YES some things we're naturally adept at but with time and practise we can get good at other things, i think answering big questions though that's just something you have to be willing to think about and ask but a lot of people don't do it because they care too much what others think and it's frowned upon to behave in any way that's more intelligent because people are just lazy thinkers they don't wanna have to think about anything and when others ask these questions they get sketchy about what others would think if they heard them answer the questions, that's a lot more complicated and Social Pressures come into play about that, i think that's just Logical Intelligence too because it's just Logical for us to be curious about our existence.

  12. lol I love how he made the distinction, "Journalists (tend) to have linguistic intelligence." Hahaha. Burn.

  13. No evidence for this, a neo-Marxist attempt to make us all feel special. IQ has boatloads of evidence to back it up but it might hurt your feelies to know you're as dumb as an eggplant.

  14. Everyone disagreeing with him, the moment you show me a PhD dissertation or a research book on the field of cognitive psychology, will I take your criticism seriously.

  15. These are more skills and talents. People used to call them gifts. It's just problematic that modern western culture created a egocentric word that separates and compares one's value based on logic and philosophical constructs. Now this gentleman is just coming around full circle( which is good), correcting and reaffirming for this generation what we lost. But is it really an intelligence if upon realizing someone with stronger eyesight also who can see further, and in color than someone born near sighted and color blind. Or a person with a strong properioceptive sense is also a great navigator. If an autistic person is superior in a left brain function but can't feed themselves or tie their shoes we admire their gift and feel bad for their deficiencies. But they are valued non the less. We just need a different definition for functional because what they don't tell you in science is that per evolution the majority of humanity should be unintelligent but we are more intelligent than we perceive. Some of intelligence is memory and recall…..who memorized more data and can recall it faster than someone else. We also value today's intelligence based on what more popular for our current society. If you were a Zulu warrior or Greek Spartan, physical prowess is more valued and you survived. But today, even though it's not functional or needed to know trigonometry to buy groceries in everyday life, the sub culture of those who do are highly prized. It's about perspective, and more importantly who writes the book that defines who intelligent and whose not.

  16. Is masterbation a good sign of intelligence? What about a well planned murder or bank robbery,a jail escape… lol dark humor ftw

  17. Sure. But they are all correlated and average of them all is far from uniform. So, it's more like IQ is the total power level, but one can have specialization or deficiencies from this base. It's not like this explains away anything.

  18. I think there is also a moral/ethical intelligence. Some people have a very keen sense of right and wrong while others are apathetic to the consequences of their actions.

  19. This is an unintelligent video. I’ll bet money that almost all people who are above average in any of those categories of intelligence are also, on average, above average intelligence in any other category of intelligence. In sort great athletes are often score above average on iQ tests. Same for great musicians or any other of those ridiculous categories.

  20. So here intelligence is defined as something you just happen to do. Everything is an intelligence. Mannerisms, random quirks (which may or may not help you or make you more symphathetic to other humans), hand eye coordination… all these things don't exist, but are expressions of certain cognitive presets a human has. How convenient. You get an intelligence, and YOU get an intelligence and you too!

  21. Very much agreed Howard, including existential intelligence w/ I further developed to an advanced stage by constantly studying alike subjects, observing the outer and inner world's (+ other things) for 35 years. I noticed over and again, that most people can't sense and improve this intelligence even if you try to open their minds to with 5, 10,15 yes of teaching….

  22. Rename this channel Tiny Think if you're going to feature people like this. He is trying to make the Hogwarts Sorting Hat into his own brand of pseudoscience, just inventing categories and pointing to various jobs that he has no grasp of… This is how religion is fabricated, somebody likes to put things into ill fitting boxes and lord those categories over others.

  23. He's not at my level yet, I know of 100,000,000 intelligence. Waste of your time if I explained it…so just be careful and have fun.

  24. What about olfactory/gustatory intelligence, i.e. the ability to distinguish and classify discrete chemicals via taste and smell? I made that up. But I sense it’s legit.

  25. What if I excell highly at all of them do you know what that makes me. Alone… I'm a poet, songwriter, computer scientist, dancer, skateboarder, musician of 6 instruments, violin maker, singer, streamliner, inventor, and chemist. The truth is I'm 36 single, never married, no kids, and can't find anyone who can challenge my mind. And I work at a gas station at minimum wage.

  26. Intelligence is just a talent for intellectual pursuits, a subcategory of talent. I guess Gardner lacks in linguistic intelligence, at least.

  27. Intelligence number Zero:
    Common sense intelligence – Finding which intelligence is needed and how to apply it in a particular situation.

  28. What about artistic intelligence? Maybe it's related to spatial intelligence, particularly with sculptors, but I don't see a category here for this: the ability to execute line, to arrange images and create 2D compositions, relate colors to each other, all in a synchronized fashion.

  29. You can break them down into subcategories, but if you can't prove that they are not strongly correlated or causally related, the claims are meaningless. if logical and linguistic intelligence is a powerful predictor of the other intelligences (or the ability to learn those intelligences), then there still is only one true intelligence…

  30. I would be interested to hear why teaching intelligence is its own thing on the list. Shouldn't it just be a combination of Interpersonal intelligence, combined with another Intelligence relative to the subject?
    eg- I use my Interpersonal Intelligence to identify how someone thinks and processes information, which tells me how best to explain Logic/Math Intelligence in a way that helps complete their math homework.

  31. His last point destroys his whole theory. Namely, an intelligent person can be good in any if the 8 areas (think Leonardo Davinci), but in our times chooses to focus on one, to achieve success or that one area instead of mediocre results in many. Remember Calvin Coolidge on persistence? IQ tests attempt to measure this one underlying intelligence, regardless of culture or experience.

  32. So there are 8 or more intelligences. And when you describe them they sound more like skills, witch can be developed and improved and we end up to the conclusion that talent does not exist but its a skill that has been improved to a very high level nothing more(so anyone can be talented at anything that they want, if they put in the time and effort to develop that particular skill).

  33. One thing that defines intelligence in nature.. Curiosity.. You can tell how smart any creature is by the level of curiosity.. Intelligent people have a myriad of interests in other subjects

  34. Piss intelligence, shit intelligence, breathing intelligence, eating intelligence, walking intelligence. Wow, so many fucking ways to express intelligence. (intelligence is not a synonym for competence ffs)

  35. …..No set of randomized items can be so different as to not have a commonality to group the items. That's what I think. So, I think that, although Gardner may be right in detailing the multiplicative manifestations of intelligence, they can still be explained by the "g" factor.

  36. systematic intelegence, integrating all the other intelegence things into one view or something new so related to creativity

  37. Prof Gardner, I can agree up to a point. I will not agree that Kinesthetics intelligence, being good at football or dancing, is intelligence. Athletes, scientists and philosophers are different beasts.

  38. I wish he mentioned emotional intelligence, not sure if this researched in the same way but personally this is an important intelligence to have.

    However this may be a sub element to the internal intelligence (understanding one self) he mentioned.

    Thoughts people?

  39. Is 10,000 hours of practice is needed to become an expert pertaining to sexual intelligence?
    Or am I conflating two theories?

  40. I'm as sceptic as it gets and I think the concept of Existential Intelligence is fascinating (I reckon that is what people often call wisdom). If psychology and neuroscience could develop a method to quantify wisdom and identify its neural patterns, we could in the future create not only artificial intelligence but also artificial wisdom.

  41. Hm. Pedagogical intelligence. A combination of other intelligences…? Essentially, being able to 1. understand another being (interpersonal intelligence), to then 2. communicate the topic (1. Language intelligence) and 3, knowing the topic. (Logical and mathematic intelligence).
    The topic could also be anything, so it could be knowing and able to share any topic.
    For example.
    I can teach someone to do athletics extremely well. The kinesthetics.
    Hmm…
    Interesting.
    Very cool concept.
    I really do like this idea of teaching intelligence. Just wondering about it some..

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