Essay Example on What Is Intelligence? Exploring Different Theories

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1675 Words
Date:  2023-05-23

Primarily, there is no standard definition of intelligence. However, many informal definitions do exist. After a long period of analysis, many psychologists came up with different terms and definitions of intelligence. According to the oxford dictionary, intelligence refers to the competence to acquire and administer knowledge as well as skills. There are various views on the structure of intelligence globally (Anderson, 1992).

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Under the structure of intelligence, various theories of intelligence exist which explain the multiple existences of intelligence. Gardner and Hatch (1989) developed several theories of intelligence which explain the unique skills or aptitude of different individuals. First, the mathematical-logical intelligence refers to the capability to use figures to identify patterns as well as reasoning logically. Individuals with the kind of intelligence reason in a philosophical and theoretical manner with a unique way of identifying patterns and relationships contrary to others. Their environment is full of figures, mathematical operations, and are capable of solving complicated problems.

Moreover, Gardner and Hatch (1989) on biological research found another kind of intelligence known as spatial intelligence. It has to do with the creation and manipulation of imaginary images or rather mental images vital in solving problems. Individuals with such forms of intelligence are excellent in drawing designs, patterns. Their environment perhaps might be full of construction papers or drawing papers, colors, and fabric. Perfect at imaginary images and visualizing. Besides, linguistic intelligence refers to competence in using formal language. The mastery of poetical expression where an individual makes use of formal language to recall certain information.

The theory of musical intelligence is the competence or the ability to write, read, understand, and formulate certain rhythms and tones to create some musical sounds and pitches. It extends to particular auditory functions useful in the creation of sound patterns. Individuals with the type of intelligence can critically think and compose several rhythms, can use various facial expression, good at mimicking sounds, and they use music as a tool of passing information. Additionally, Gardner and Hatch (1989) came up with the theory of Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence. It focuses on the relationship between the mind and the physical activities. The competence to use mental strength to administer body movements.

Finally, the theory of Interpersonal Intelligence and Intrapersonal Intelligence. The former refers to the ability to capture other people's intentions and reactions. The latter refers to the competence to know your motives and even feelings, respectively, Gardner and Hatch, (1989).

Guilford's structure of intelligence is based on three essential components. The content, products, as well as the operations. Through the dimension of content, different individuals are more active, concentrate, and reason adequately on various information concerning 'visual, auditory, symbolic, behavioral as well as semantic.' Visual refers to the kind of knowledge or the root of information resulting from a particular portray and senses. Moreover, auditory images are the precise source of information (Guilford, 1967)

On the other hand, symbols and words that are used to transmit any kind of information fall under 'symbolic.' In semantic meanings rarely correlates together with words. Lastly, behavioral refers to data resulting from the observation of mental states as well as the character of a person. In the end, the relevance of the model 'content' is, for instance, an individual can perform well at processing visual arts information, whereas, underperforming in processing symbolic content. Furthermore, a scientist who does well in semantic meaning, as well as symbolic content, might be underprivileged at behavioral analysis hence the poor relationship with other persons.

Progressively, the synopsis of the 'product' dimensions correspond with the sort of information processed from the former 'content' types. They include, for instance, units accredits capability to distinguish units within a particular content area. Moreover, another product dimension, 'classes,' refers to the competence to set up units according to its relevance and sorting them into the correct groups (Guilford, 1967). Furthermore, 'relations' is a product dimension about the capability of anticipating how the pairs of units correlate. Systems subsist relationship amid various units in the product dimension.

Transformation, on the other, is the ability to interpret certain principles and adjustments in information, for example, the revolution of visual numbers in the semantic area. Lastly, the product dimension of 'implications' attributes to the various virtue of expectation in the information. With the two models of content and product, it is evident that all categories of information every individual can think, reason, or do, is sorted accordingly (Guilford, 1967).

Additionally, brain activities and perception of information are under the 'operations dimension.' The operations dimension is characterized by various categories of information. The first type of information is cognition. Cognition refers to the way brain discern or distinguish different components. For instance, the competency of a person to diagnose certain figures and words is under the 'cognition of semantic units.' The second activity of the human brain is 'memory.' Memory in the context refers to the way the human brain can accumulate and even bring back or recapture various types of information. However, people have different brain capacities, thus variance in the ability to recapture or remember a different type of information. People who are perhaps excellent in the retrieval of behavioral units might be underprivileged in remembering semantic transformation (Gardner, 1983).

Moreover, 'divergent production' refers to the type of information where a person can approach a certain memory. For example, behavioral diversity involves the way the human brain can recapture various articles or biography about people. Besides, another type of information under the operations dimension is 'convergent production.' Convergent production deals with the IQ of a person associated with the philosophy of evaluation as well as problem-solving. It refers to the ability of brain memory to look solve problems ascertaining particular situations.

Finally, the last kind of information in brain activities is 'evaluation.' Evaluation attributes to the way the brain can formulate judgments concerning different types of information, for instance, judgments on identical elements and various qualities of identical items. The three models of Guilford's structure of intelligence portray a blueprint on how human brains, particularly the IQ, do work. People have different brain capacity as well as the IQ test. Thus, some are restricted to certain capabilities, while others are projected to do well in all areas. Moreover, recognition of various skills plays an important role in problem-solving.

Furthermore, "various contemporary models of intelligence do exist, such as the "neural efficiency model, complex systems model, contextual and hierarchical model" (Davidson, 1990). The neural efficiency model assumes that the brain is the actual root of intelligence. Individuals with high intelligence quotient (IQ) operate more quickly and factual contrary to individuals of less intelligence. It is possible to measure the brain efficiency of every individual through particular techniques resulting from modern technology. The techniques include, 'the nerve condition velocity, conjure potentials as well as cerebral glucose metabolic rates (CGMRs)' (Sternberg 1990).

The complex system model uses intellectual quotient to calibrate the intelligence of individuals through focusing on physiological factors of intelligence. The premise of the complex system model states that intelligence is subjected to changes, perhaps depending on the condition of the environment. On the other hand, contextual model thesis projects that intelligence is diverse with contrasting meanings and contexts, especially in regards to a variety of cultures around the world. The difference in cultures results in the different assumption of intelligence. For instance, "good intelligent behavior in one culture is sometimes contradictory in other cultures" (Berry & Bennett, 1992)

Lastly, the hierarchical model is based on a mental capability test. The resulting interrelationship scores of different people identify the variability of intelligence among the people. For instance, when the performance of several kinds of problems correlates, the measured capacity of the types of problems results in the emergence of the general factor.

Besides, under the structure of intelligence, several conceptions do exist. The two main conceptions of intelligence are the Western conceptions of intelligence and the conception of intelligence around the world (Sternberg, 1990). Under Western conceptions of intelligence, many studies of theories do exist. Sternberg, (1990), instances on the theories are, "first, implicit theories of intelligence, academic intelligence, and everyday intelligence. Second, implicit theories of intelligence and creativity in laypersons and experts in various fields of the undertaking. The third set of study is on implicit theories of intelligence across the adults' lifespan." (Sternberg, 1990).

Several factors emerge when researching and scrutinizing the valuation of intelligence in different people. Social ability, problem-solving as well as rhetorical competence. Social ability refers to the behaviors which involve respecting and accepting the conditions of others in society. Problem-solving involves identifying problems, thinking reasonably, and looking for genuine ideas to work out the problems. Lastly, rhetorical competence involves behaviors, for instance, fluently speaking and making conversation without any or minimal challenges.

The study of definite theories of intelligence in the life span shows that the older generation's perspective on the daily competence is much significant in distinguishing between average and phenomenal people's intelligence. Moreover, the research on young children about their nature of intelligence resulted in certain attributes. The infants' intelligence traits include; observation and recognition of people, vigilance, vocalization, as well as the consciousness of the new environment. At around teenage age, some of the intelligence attributes are, 'verbal ability, training capability, problem- solving ability as well as thinking ability and creativity.' (Siegler and Richards, 1982)

According to Sternberg (1990), the conception of intelligence around the world disclose intelligence from several cultures around the world. For instance, Taiwanese perception of intelligence, contains several factors, namely, "intrapersonal intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, general cognitive factor, intellectual self-assertion as well as intellectual self-effacement" (Yang and Sternberg, 1997). In contrast, other nation's conceptions of intelligence involve rhetorical thinking capability and nonverbal reasoning capability, the instances of Chinese conception.


Therefore, it is evident that the concept of intelligence has to do with the kind of natural ability, either an inbuilt competence to do something. Hence, intelligence is a description of aptitude. Doing something in a manner producing a quality achievement is what is referred to as competence. According to Hand (2007), competence is a kind of thing subjected to examinations, demos, tests, and even i...

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