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More Than School Smart: A Guide To The Different Forms of Intelligence

Math and Science, the dynamic duo, cross the finish line hand in hand, bursting through the red ribbon in unison. The crowd doesn’t know who the real winner is, but what they do know is how quickly the Arts was left behind. Music hadn’t even left when the gun went off, History was off to a slow and steady pace, and the Social Sciences were too busy discussing the implications of winning the race to even begin. English was far too preoccupied with writing their winning speech and the Languages were caught up translating “On my mark, get set, go” into Mandarin, Spanish and Arabic. The crowd was filled with old high school teachers, parents, employers, and professors and they all cheered loudly as if they were surprised by the results. They knew from the get-go that Math and Science would be the ones that would win a gold medal and be put on the first place pedestal, while the others would be given identical blue ribbons and an “A for effort”. Recently there has been a push in classrooms to encourage young girls into pursuing “less feminine” studies such as chemistry, engineering and computer science in the hopes that they will one day make a career out of them. This valiant effort is important because it is an attempt to thwart gender roles and it does so by empowering girls to not be intimidated when entering a male dominated workforce. This whole effort is quite significant, but we must not forget to encourage the other areas of study as well. One school subject should not be praised over another just because it is in high demand; we must not forget about the arts and the humanities. Not everyone is going to be good at physics or chemistry and by turning our backs on the other courses we are also turning our backs on the students that excel in those “less than ideal” subjects. Those who are pursuing majors such as finance, accounting, computer science and mechanical engineering are automatically given societies stamp of approval, while majors that stray more towards the arts and humanities are often looked down upon. Certain degrees are deemed “more successful” than others because they are perceived to be the stepping stones to a life chock-full of financial abundance, stability and status, the ingredients that are considered to equate to happiness. Yet, not everyone can pursue such degrees, not because they aren’t capable, but because everyone has a unique set of abilities and talents. We must stop placing one form of intelligence above another. With each unique branch of brilliance, comes its own positives and negatives, but it is critical to be aware of the different strengths that exist within this world. We must learn to stop discrediting certain forms of intelligence and instead accept and recognize them as equally important and interconnected. Here is a list of intelligences that often go unrecognized but by no means are meant to represent every personality out there. These are just general categories in which subcategories can arise from.

Logical Intelligence: Logical intelligence is the ability to calculate, compute and complete difficult equations and experiments. Inductive and deductive reasoning are utilized when computing problems whether in an equation or everyday life. A solution can be uncovered by following a regimented, well thought out plan devoid of subjective reasoning. Individuals who are logical thinkers are usually well oriented in the mathematics and sciences.

Musical Intelligence: Musical intelligence is having the ability to understand the relationship between tone, beat, and rhythm that is embedded within music. Such individuals are musicians, composers, and and are extremely aware of sounds that others may miss. There is a strong connection between music and emotions.

Social Intelligence: This is the type of intelligence that allows a person to accurately take in their surroundings and then successfully navigate the social world based on these observations. They are often times very good at reading people and can quickly see beyond facades and uncover ulterior motives. Those who are socially intelligent can easily fit in to any social situation. These individuals are highly adaptive and can mold themselves in a way that yields positive results. Communication skills are abundant.

Kinetic Intelligence: To be bodily intelligent is to possess superior balance, strength, accuracy, hand-eye-coordination, foot-eye-coordination, precision or to excel in anything athletically demanding. This person expresses themselves through movement. This isn’t just a person who enjoys the sport, but makes it into a lifestyle, and is exceptionally good at it. They can alter and control their body in a way that is graceful, expressive and pushes it to its limits.

Common Sense Intelligence: Someone who possesses common sense is the one who excels on multiple choice tests with very little preparation or studying. This person has the “I’ll just wing it” mentality and is proficient in challenging and new situations because they rely on knowledge learned through previous experiences. They are extremely observant and can use this talent to worm their way out of any dangerous or trivial situation.  

Intuition Intelligence: This is an intelligence in which gut feelings override logical reasoning. This person is not only extremely in touch with their own emotions but is in tune with the emotions and motives of those surrounding them. They can sense danger, other people’s true emotions, and future outcomes before they occur without really knowing why, and are often times disturbingly accurate.

Natural Intelligence: Those that possess natural intelligence are the ones that are “book smart”. Learning new information comes easily to this individual because they are naturally knowledgeable. This person does well in any subject, and tends to be great in debates, discussions or anything verbal. This intelligence is apparent in a school setting but may not always translate to situations outside of the classroom.

Artistic Intelligence: Those who are inclined to express themselves through creative endeavors are artistically intelligent. This crowd thinks a little differently than the average person and can share themselves with the world through the way they dress, the way they speak, poetry, paintings, sculptures, photography or film. This is the kid that was always really good at art back in high school. The artist has the ability to capture sensory perceptions and translate them onto a medium. They have an eye for color and design and can use them to affect a viewer’s perception of their masterpiece.

In recognizing the different forms of intelligences we can better understand and appreciate each other and learn to not judge our contrasting blueprints, but instead celebrate our unique talents. Just remember collegiettes, there is no such thing as a superior intelligence.


Logan is a fellow Ute majoring in Sociology. She is an avid bird watcher, and spends her down time knitting infinity scarves and crocheting wall rugs. Her second home is at Trader Joe's where she can be found endlessly returning to the free sample table with absolutely no shame. Her greatest accomplishment to date is casually petting a wild bird at the youthful age of 3. When she is not taming wild animals she can be found pursuing her latest talent, that is cooking zucchini to perfection, and working on her Instagram model portfolio. One day she hopes to live in a van down by the river. 
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