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Multiple Intelligences: Navigating Diversity within Honors. Richelle Brown Diversity Outreach Coordinator/Advisor NACADA National Conference 2007. Overview. Intelligence Honors & Gifted Multiple Intelligences Theory The Multiple Intelligences Multiple Intelligences & Diversity Composites

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Multiple Intelligences: Navigating Diversity within Honors

Richelle Brown

Diversity Outreach Coordinator/Advisor

NACADA National Conference 2007

RLB 2007

Overview l.jpg

  • Intelligence

  • Honors & Gifted

  • Multiple Intelligences Theory

  • The Multiple Intelligences

  • Multiple Intelligences & Diversity

  • Composites

  • Implementations

  • Discussion

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  • What do you think of?

  • What is it?

    • Intelligence comes from the Latin verb intellegere, which means ‘to understand’.

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Honors vs. Gifted

  • Honors

    • Is the individual smart?

  • Gifted

    • How is the individual smart?

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Multiple Intelligences Theory(Bringing a fair opportunity to all)

  • Multiple Intelligences Theory:

    • An educational theory by psychologist Howard Gardner, who challenged the view that ‘intelligence’ could be objectively measured and reduced to a single number (IQ).

    • Implies that multiple kinds of ‘intelligence’ exist in human beings, and thus each person has a unique cognitive profile.

    • Gardner broadened the scope of human potential beyond the IQ score to include 8 intelligences.

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The 8 Multiple Intelligences

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The Multiple Intelligences

  • Linguistic intelligence

    • word smart

  • Logical-mathematical intelligence

    • number/reasoning smart

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The Multiple Intelligences

  • Spatial intelligence

    • picture smart

  • Bodily-Kinesthetic intelligence

    • body smart

  • Musical intelligence

    • music smart

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The Multiple Intelligences

  • Interpersonal intelligence

    • people smart

  • Intrapersonal intelligence

    • self smart

  • Naturalist intelligence

    • nature smart

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Potential 9th Multiple Intelligence

  • Existential Intelligence

    • Ability to exhibit the proclivity to pose and ponder questions about life, death and ultimate realities.


      Philosopher, Theorist

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How are the intelligences determined?

  • Gardner determines intelligence candidates by a range of criteria that includes, the ability to resolve 'genuine problems of difficulties’ within certain cultural settings.

  • Examples:

    • Case studies of individuals with unusual talents in a given field.

    • Neurological evidence for areas of the brain that are specialized for particular capacities.

    • The existence of a symbolic notation.

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Reasons Multiple Intelligences Diversifies

  • Reason One: Development

  • Reason Two: Empowering

  • Reason Three: Equality

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Multiple Intelligences & Development

  • The theory of multiple intelligence claims that we all possess at least eight types of mental functioning and every individual has the ability to use each. However, everybody has one or two that work better for him or her to learn and excel.

  • Project SUMIT

    • All around development in all areas by tapping into individual intelligences.

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Multiple Intelligences & Empowering

  • What an individual thinks, believes, and feels will affect how he/she behaves.

  • These beliefs can affect students behavior by:

    • Choice of behavior

    • Effort

    • Thought patterns/emotional reactions

    • Humans as producers

  • Higher self-efficacy leads to self-directed and self-regulated behaviors so that all students will be empowered – not just those who excel with linguistics and math.

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Multiple Intelligences & Equality

  • Historically, society has only prioritized two intelligences in our educational system. (logical/mathematical & verbal/linguistic)

  • This societal bias is a main contributor to non-diverse honors programs.

  • Multiple Intelligences can assist in eliminating this by seeing ‘smart’ through different lenses.

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Multiple Intelligence Theory & Diversifying Higher Ed

  • Puts an end to stereotypes of higher education students, especially in terms of who is ‘smart’.

  • Creates a holistic approach to communicate that:

    • Diverse, intelligent students in various areas are welcome.

    • Students of all intelligences are valued in our society.

    • Students should feel comfortable in their own skin.

    • Students should be cognizant and compassionate for the diversity of others, with an appreciation of all.

    • The notion of ‘high-ability’ students should be rethought.

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Possible Composites

  • Typical Honors Student Composite

    • SAT 1300+

    • ACT 30+

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Possible Composites

  • Atypical Honors Class (using MI) Student Composite

    • SAT 1000+

    • ACT 25+

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Potential Implementations

  • Include measures beyond the typical verbal/logic.

  • Holistic Admission

    • Portfolios (Language, Self/Society, Arts, Math/Science/Technology)

    • Interviews

    • Applications in all forms (let students show how they are smart using their intelligences, not forcing them to paper-based applications)

    • Essays focusing on different methods of reasoning

    • Insight Resume (showing the unique individual)

      Approaching the gifted in this manner enables for a wider range of students participating in college honors programs and college in general.

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  • Misinterpreted to justify any type of racial, ethnic, or cultural stereotyping for intelligences.

  • Focusing on only one intelligence and overlooking the full profile.

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Outreaching with Multiple Intelligences

  • Multiple Intelligences Inventory

    • Awareness


  • Multiple Intelligences Activities

    • Campus Day Event

      • Age-appropriate activities for each intelligence

      • Group activity utilizing each intelligence with same scenarios

    • Connect with Multiple Intelligences-Based Schools

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The Whole PictureResource: Eric Oddleifson

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Thank You

  • Questions

  • Discussion/Thoughts

    Richelle Brown

    Diversity Outreach Coordinator

    Indiana University – Hutton Honors College

    [email protected]

    NACADA 2007

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Discussion Thoughts

  • What does your program use to select students? (Admission Criteria)

  • What kind of outreach do you do to underrepresented groups?

  • How are your diversity numbers?

    • If well-represented – how did you go about that?

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  • Gardner, H. Intelligence Reframed: Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century.

  • Gardner, H. Multiple Intelligences: The Theory in Practice.

  • Gray, J. The Theory of Multiple Intelligences: Understanding Cognitive Diversity in School

  • Bandura, A. Social Foundations of Thought and Action: A Social Cognitive Theory.

  • Kezar, A. Theory of Multiple Intelligences: Implications for Higher Education

  • Multiple Intelligences Inventory Test:

  • Schwartz 1997

  • Eric Oddleifson, Boston Public Schools

  • Project SUMIT

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