1: Now that seven
intelligences have been identified, one can (and perhaps should)
create seven tests and secure seven scores.
Reality 1: MI theory
represent a critique of "psychometrics-as-usual." A battery of MI
tests is inconsistent with the major tenets of the theory.
2: An intelligence is
the same as a domain or a discipline.
Reality 2: An
intelligence is a new kind of construct, and it should not be
confused with a domain or a discipline.
3: An intelligence is
the same thing as a "learning style," a "cognitive style," or a
Reality 3: The concept
of style designates a general approach that an individual
can apply equally to every conceivable content. In contrast, an
intelligence is a capacity, with its component processes, that
is geared to a specific content in the world (such as musical
sounds or spatial patterns).
4: MI theory is not
empirical. (A variant of Myth 4 alleges that MI theory is
empirical but has been disapproved.)
Reality 4: MI theory is
based wholly on empirical evidence and can be revised on the basis
of new empirical findings.
MI theory is incompatible with g (general intelligence),
with hereditarian accounts, or with environmental accounts of the
nature and causes of intelligence.
Reality 5: MI theory
questions not the existence but the province and explanatory power
of g. By the same token, MI theory is neutral on the
question of heritability of specific intelligences, instead
underscoring the centrality of genetic/environmental interactions.
6: MI theory so broadens
the notion of intelligence that it includes all psychological
constructs and thus vitiates the usefulness, as well as the usual
connotation, of the terms.
Reality 6: This
statement is simply wrong. I believe that it is the standard
definition of intelligence that narrowly constricts our view,
treating a certain form of scholastic performance as if it
encompassed the range of human capacities and leading to disdain
for those who happen not to be psychometrically bright. Moreover,
I reject the distinction between talent and intelligence; in my
view, what we call "intelligence" in the vernacular is simply a
certain set of "talents" in the linguistic and/or
7: There is an eighth
(or ninth or tenth) intelligence.
Reality 7: Not in my
writings so far. But I am working on it.