Harvard psychologist Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences is widely accepted in the field of psychology. Dr. Gardner’s research suggests that schools and standardized tests only focus on two out of the eight types of intelligence.
This leads to students not being able to reach their full potential and can lead to self-esteem issues. Schools need to be making an effort to teach everyone’s learning and thinking styles. (see infographic for a breakdown of the eight types of intelligence)
In his research, Dr. Gardner found that schools teach mainly to those with high linguistic and logical-mathematical intelligence. This teaching style leaves many students frustrated and lacking an understanding of self.
Many students at our school who score poorly on a test or an essay, perform well when given things such as open-ended prompts and creative projects. These students that don’t excel in linguistic and logical-mathematical intelligence are likely gifted in another area, and they might doubt their intelligence due to the common misunderstanding that there are limited ways to be smart.
If students were to be provided information to help them determine their type of intelligence it would not only help them academically but socially as well. Teachers could provide options when assigning summative assignments, such as letting the student choose between a test or a project. Determining these types of intelligence would provide teachers with the ability to better understand what their students need.
By Sam Moore, Opinions Editor