Competence and Self Management

Modern theorists in the area of intelligence have tried to avoid the reliance on factor analysis and existing tests that have limited traditional research and have tried different approaches to the subject. For example, Howard Gardner, in his 1983 book Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences, starts with the premises that the essence of intelligence is competence and that there are several distinct areas in which human beings can demonstrate competence. Based on a wide-ranging review of evidence from many scientific fields and sources, Gardner designated seven areas of competence as separate and relatively independent "intelligences." In his 1993 work Multiple Intelligences, Gardner revised his theory to include an eighth type of intelligence. This set of attributes is comprised of verbal, mathematical, spatial, bodily/kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalist skills.

Another theory is the one proposed by Robert Sternberg in his 1985 book Beyond IQ: A Triarchic Theory of Human Intelligence. Sternberg defines intelligence, broadly, as mental self-management and stresses the "real-world," in addition to the academic, aspects of the concept. He believes that intelligent behavior consists of purposively adapting to, selecting, and shaping one's environment and that both culture and personality play significant roles in such behavior. Sternberg posits that differences in IQ scores reflect differences in individuals' stages of developing the expertise measured by the particular IQ test, rather than attributing these scores to differences in intelligence, ability, or aptitude. Sternberg's model has five key elements: metacognitive skills, learning skills, thinking skills, knowledge, and motivation. The elements all influence one another. In this work, Sternberg claims that measurements derived from ability and achievement tests are not different in kind; only in the point at which the measurements are being make.

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