The Nature and Notion of Intelligence. Essay

The Nature and Notion of Intelligence. Essay

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Every person is different and their intelligence is as unique as they are, no two people share the same intelligence. There is no universal definition attached to intelligence. This is due to the highly debatable topic surrounding the concept of whether there is only one single type of intelligence or if there are multiple intelligences. There are currently two major theories of study being devoted to the nature and notion of intelligence. The thought that intelligence comes from one common factor, otherwise known as the g-factor, is supported by a variety of psychologists including Spearman and Galton. Evidence to support the opposing view includes the work of psychologists Cattell, Gardner and Sternberg. It is worthwhile to note that there is a level of disagreement within the group as to specifically how many types of intelligence there actually are. This report will examine the various types of intelligence presented by psychologists and explore the notion that no two people share the same intelligence.

The supporters of multiple intelligence may not agree as to how many forms of intelligence there are but they do agree that intelligence is not a stand alone concept, that it is made up of a series of building blocks. Of the three theories to be explored in this paper Cattell’s two factor theory (1957) was the first, followed by Gardner and his theory of multiple intelligences (1983) and Sternberg’s triarchic theory of intelligence is the most modern, being published in 2003.

Raymond Cattell distinguished that there were two general forms of intelligence; fluid intelligence and crystallised intelligence. The abilities that are associated with fluid intelligence are those associated with driving an individual’s ability to be...

... middle of paper ...

...igence Reframed: Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century. New York, NY: Basic Books

Gardner, H. (2006). Multiple intelligences: New horizons, revised edition. New York, NY: Basic Books

Horn, J.L. (1965). Fluid and Crystallized intelligence: A factor analytic study of the structure among primary mental abilities. Ph.D. Thesis. University of Illinois.

Horn, J. L., & Cattell, R. B. (1967). Age differences in fluid and Crystallized intelligence. Acta Psychologica, 26, 107-129.

Paik, H. S. Washington University. (date not cited). One Intelligence or Many?--Alternative Approaches to Cognitive Abilities. Retrieved from:

Wilson, L. O. The Second Principle. (2014). Sterberg’s Views on Intelligence. Retrieved from:

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