Multiple Intelligences is a theory that proposes the differentiation of human intelligence into certain modalities of intelligence. This theory goes against the norm of defining intelligence using a single, general ability. However, the theory has been criticized for its lack of empirical evidence.
Howard Gardner proposed the theory of multiple intelligences. According to him, an intelligence modality should fulfill eight criteria. These criteria are potential for brain isolation by brain damage, place in evolutionary history, presence of core operations, susceptibility to encoding, a distinct developmental progression, the existence of exceptional people or prodigies, support from experimental psychology, and psychometric findings.
This theory has emerged from recent research on metacognition. According to it, we can know the world in eight different ways. The common methods of manifesting intelligence are musical-rhythmic and harmonic, visual-spatial, verbal-linguistic, logical-mathematical, bodily-kinesthetic, intrapersonal, interpersonal, existential, and additional intelligence.
Individuals differ in the strengths of this intelligence and how they are invoked to solve problems. These differences challenge the traditional educational system, for it assumes everyone learns the same information in the same way. According to this theory, our educational system is heavily biased towards the linguistic mode of instruction and assessment. It says, the current system bends less towards the logical and quantitative modes of instruction and assessment.