Compare and Contrast Essay on Multiple Intelligence Approach Versus the Evolutionary Psychology Approach

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  622 Words
Date:  2022-11-28


As described by Howard Garner in his book Frames of Mind (1983), the multiple intelligence approach theory claims that individuals have the potential to develop a combination of eight separate bits of intelligence (Linguistic, Musical, Logical-Mathematical, Spatial, Bodily Kinesthetics, Interpersonal, Intrapersonal and Naturalistic) which point out to the uniqueness of a person. Individuals draw on this intelligence, individually and corporately, to create products and solve problems that are relevant to the societies in which they live. The Evolutionary Psychology theory attempts to explain how evolution has shaped the mind and behaviour and proposes that the human brain comprises many functional mechanisms designed by the process of natural selection (Barrett, Dunbar & Lycett, 2002).

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In this sense, I do not think that the evolutionary psychology theory answers the criticisms lodged against the multiple intelligence approaches because as Brinkman (2011) so succinctly puts it, often in evolutionary psychology, the individual is considered to be independent of social and cultural factors. The ignorance of cultural and societal influence on human behavior and intelligence is entirely unjust because human behavior is as a result of normative and subjective beliefs which have a great influence on an individual's behavioral practices (Bjorklund & Pellegrini, 2002).

Assuming that our behaviors and actions are a somewhat more significant development of our ancestors and that our current and ancestral cognition are somehow linked is a great injustice to human psychology as it does not precisely explain and represent new thinking on multiple constructs of intelligence. That is, just like the multiple intelligence theory, the evolutionary psychology theory cannot tell the complexity of human intellectual activity.

How The Human Brain Processes Different Categories Of Data In Different Parts Of The Brain

The human brain is the most complex of organs in the human body comprising of about 50-100 billion nerve cells or neurons that are in constant interaction with each other. The brain typically operates on a single stimulus by evaluating the activity of a large number of neurons. So how exactly does a human brain process information? To start with, sensory organs in our brains transform physical stimuli such as touch, heat, soundwaves or photons of light into electrochemical signals in a process called input. It is because, for the brain to process information, it must first be stored. The sensory information is repeatedly converted by the brain's algorithms in both bottom-up and top-down processing. If I, for example, look at a painting for the first time, my brain which put together straightforward information such as the color orientation, the intricate ways in which the artist has blended the colors and the alignment of the colors to create some aspect of life beyond the paint. It is the bottom-up process which decides whether I see the paint. Top-down processing uses the decisions made at bottom-up processing to speed up my recognition of the color and helps me recognise the design of the paint and possibly what the artiste had in mind (Bjorklund & Pellegrini, 2002).

Once processing is complete, I (brain) then decide how important the signal is. The next process is stored. The brain stores the information for later use and encodes it (gives it meaning beyond the obvious). However, this information has to be continuously reinforced as this signals the brain that the information is useful and should be remembered. For example, if I learn a concept in class and which to remember, I will have to study deeply about it for my brain to register and always remember this information. Kind of like how professors majoring in particular fields work.


Bjorklund, D. F., & Pellegrini, A. D. (2012). The origins of human nature: Evolutionary developmental psychology. American Psychological Association.

Barrett, L., Dunbar, R., & Lycett, J. (2002). Human evolutionary psychology. Princeton University Press.

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