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Diverse Intelligence: Compare and Contrast

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Diverse Intelligence: Compare and Contrast

EDU602

October 14, 2006

Abstract

Multiple intelligences research has had resurgence in the last few years. This is mainly the result of the increase in inclusion classrooms occupied with mainstreamed students designated as possessing diverse disabilities or a language barrier. The two research journals herein used as the basis for this compare and contrast are Using the Theory of Multiple Intelligences to Increase Fourth-Grade Students' Academic Achievement in Science by Linda Davis and Increasing Verbal Participation of Gifted Females Through the Utilization of Multiple Intelligence Theory by David E. Walker. Both address utilizing multiple intelligences as a catalyst to extract increased academic achievement or performance from students.

Diverse Intelligence: Compare and Contrast

As diverse are our children so are the ways in which each think and learn. The question of how we learn has pondered many psychologists and scientists and now has seeped into the very offspring of learning, our school classroom teacher. Educators faced with a myriad of varied situations such as social, cultural, economic and psychological issues are compelled to examine and explore the learning psyche. At the forefront is the Howard Gardner thesis of multiple intelligences or MI. "Multiple Intelligences are seven different ways to demonstrate intellectual ability" (Learning Styles Test, n.d.). They are visual/spatial intelligence, verbal/linguistic intelligence, logical/mathematical intelligence, bodily/kinesthetic intelligence, musical/rhythmic intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, and intrapersonal intelligence.

In Using the Theory of Multiple Intelligences to Increase Fourth-Grade Students' Academic Achievement in Science by Linda Davis, she begins by detailing some vital demographical information. Likewise in Increasing Verbal Participation of Gifted Females Through the Utilization of Multiple Intelligence Theory by David E. Walker, also starts by providing the reader pertinent background data. Both hypothesized that using the multiple intelligences theory would exhibit a marked increase (approximately 12-20%) in the academic achievement of each respective study group. However, Davis's group involved students that were markedly failing in a particular subject area (Science) and Walker's study was concerned with increasing participation from one identified group, in this case females, who possessed academic prowess but lacked external verbalization of acquired skills in contrast to their male counterparts.

Davis supports or justifies her viewpoint on introducing MI as a means of accelerating academic levels by citing articles that qualify learning processes initially, in which one is the misplacement of students by educators in a classroom environment based on their failures rather than successes. (Davis, pg. 7, 2004) While Davis wrote that it is counterproductive to learning when teachers homogeneously place or group students and then "give them all the same instruction". (Davis, pg. 7, 2004) Walker conceded that, "gifted students felt stronger about being homogeneously placed; however, some felt less worthy because they were no longer considered to be the highest-ranked students due to the composition of their new class" (Walker, pg. 7, 2005). Based on this, one could surmise that it works for top students but not low functioning

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