Empowering Youth

 Multiple Intelligence theory & Career Clarity

In this blog post, we will discuss: 

What is the relevance of psychometric tests in career clarity?

How can science be harnessed to discover your dream career compatible with your capacity? 

Why are the three tools: the(MI) theory by Howard Gardener and the psychometric test, RIASEC theory by John Holland and the combination theory of Mackenzie, potent tools for individuals, aspiring  to build a fulfilling and successful career?

 Start your journey towards career clarity today.

Table of Contents

Multiple Intelligence theory & Career Clarity

What is intelligence?
Is it the sum of your Report card Marks?

In common parlance, intelligence is often defined by performance in an examination or grades in school. It is generally understood as the IQ, the intellectual Quotient that compares the performance of one person to another person at the same age who takes the same test. More often, intelligence is attributed to being good at Math, Science and languages. However, these tests do not measure all kinds of intelligence. 

There are many students/people who struggle with Math but excel at music; still others who may be expert at drawing, painting or sports but not so good at science  or Languages. So, how do we account for this kind of intelligence which does not fall in the promotional purview of school reports? 

Would it be fair to call those who excel at  drawing, painting or sports but are not so good at Science or Languages as unintelligent? There are many students/people who struggle with Math but excel at music; still others who may be expert at singing or speaking. How do we account for this kind of intelligence which does not fall in the promotional purview of school reports? For career clarity do we take into account school report or the skill of the child?

Moreover, the regular academic exams or tests cannot identify differences in social intelligence or any other kind of expertise that people bring to their interactions, behaviour and aptitude with others. 

Additionally, there are generational differences in the population as a whole owing to better nutrition, more education, smarter facilities of technology and knowledge along with many other factors which have resulted in not only an IQ difference from people to people but also  in the scale of improvement for each generation. 

Here comes the significance of  the theory of Multiple intelligences, which very logically answers all the misgivings and becomes more relevant for contemporary times for career clarity.

multiple Intelligence

The context, need and relevance of Multiple Intelligences or MI theory for career clarity

MI was first proposed by Gardener in 1983 in his book “Frames of Mind,” where he gives a broad definition of intelligence, and outlines several distinct types of intellectual competencies.

 The MI theory posits that Intelligence or mental capacity is only ONE but there are frames of mind with multiple intelligences or sub categories which are all dynamic and can be improved upon. He developed a criterion of eight types of competencies while evaluating each candidate’s intelligence that was based on various scientific disciplines and research.

The theory suggests that intelligence is not a single, fixed trait, but rather a range of abilities that manifest in different ways namely:

  1. Linguistic intelligence: the ability to use language effectively, both verbally and in writing.
  2. Logical-mathematical intelligence: the ability to reason logically and use mathematical concepts effectively.
  3. Spatial intelligence: the ability to think in three dimensions and visualise objects in space.
  4. Bodily-kinaesthetic intelligence: the ability to use one’s body and coordinate physical movement effectively.
  1. Musical intelligence: the ability to recognize and produce music.
  2. Interpersonal intelligence: the ability to understand and relate to others effectively.
  3. Intrapersonal intelligence: the ability to understand oneself, including one’s own thoughts, emotions, and motivations.
  4.   Naturalist intelligence: the ability to observe, recognise and understand the natural   world, including the environment, flora and fauna. Individuals who possess this intelligence have a keen awareness of their natural surroundings and are able to classify and categorise different species, identify and use natural resources and understand the interconnectedness of various ecosystems.

The individuals have varying degrees of each type of intelligence, and may excel in some areas while struggling in others. By understanding and recognising these different types of intelligence, individuals can more effectively develop and utilise their strengths and abilities for better career clarity

Some scholars have suggested the concept of ‘Existential intelligence”. This refers to the ability to contemplate the ‘bigger picture’, such as the meaning of life, the nature of consciousness,  or the experience of death. Individuals with strong  existential intelligence may have a philosophical or spiritual orientation and may seek out ways to connect with larger or more abstract concepts or ideas. In the modern parlance it is recognised as the SQ or spiritual Quotient.  However, this has not been officially added to Gardener’s original or added intelligence.

                 Read more

career clarity2.

The postulates of the MI theory making it more relevant for Career clarity are:

  • Human intelligence is divided into eight sub-categories: Linguistic, Logical- Mathematical, Spatial, Bodily-Kinesthetic, Musical, Interpersonal, Intrapersonal, and Naturalist. Investigations continue on the 9th subcategory that is existentialism.
  • This theory challenged the traditional notion that there is one single type of intelligence known as, ‘g’ for general intelligence that only focuses on cognitive abilities.
  • Gardener notes that linguistic and Logical -Mathematical is the most valued capability in schools, and society.
  • All are born with intelligences which can be enhanced, developed and enriched. They can be improved upon by environment, training and conscious effort.
  • People have different levels of intelligence. We all may have these intelligences, but our profile of these may be different for each based on genetics, experience, environment or combination of all.
  • Intelligences usually work in combination in complex ways: No Intelligence exists by itself. All intelligences interact and help in completing any task or project. For example to cook a meal, you google: one must know to browse (bodily kinesthetic) read the recipe(linguistic), make the dish (bodily-kinesthetic) probably adapt the recipe to a greater number of people (logical- mathematical) Learning, thus happens through many types of intelligences.
  • There are many ways to be intelligent: A person may not be able to read but he may be a very good story teller. In fact, verbally we need four skills; Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. A person may be highly skilled in one and less in the other. 
  • Additionally, two persons with the same level of sub skill may use it differently . For instance a person may be quite awkward on the playground or sports but may be deft at driving or weaving a carpet or yoga par excellence. MI theory emphasises the rich variety of ways in which people show their gifts within intelligences as well between intelligences. This led to Mackenzie’s combination theory which is significantly relevant to the Career clarity goal.

R.I.A.S.E.C Survey /Theory :an effective tool for Career Clarity

The key to self-discovery is self-awareness. Knowing your interests and personality type is the first step to identifying a potentially optimum career choice. 

The R.I.A.S.E.C is a widely used tool in career counselling and vocational psychology designed by John Holland, a psychologist and professor at John Hopkins University.

His survey suggests that there are six basic types of occupational environments  namely Realistic (R)  Investigative (I) Artistic (A) Social (S) Enterprising (E) Conventional (C).

He found that people needing help with career decisions can be supported by understanding their resemblance to the above six ideal vocational types. Concurrently, even the work settings can be categorised by their resemblance to six similar model work environments. People search for environments that allow them to express their interests, skills, attitudes and values. Work environments become populated by individuals with related occupational types. 

Hence, the survey measures a person’s preferences and interests to provide guidance on careers that align with those preferences. By identifying their interests and matching them to their appropriate career paths individuals can make informed decisions, increase the chances of finding job satisfaction and thus success.

It can also help individuals identify areas where they may need to develop new skills or interests in order to achieve their career goals and succeed in them. Thus the tool can help in giving customised guidance, fine-tuned to the needs, interests and orientation of an individual. 

R.I.A.S.A.C inference

MACKENZIE’S Theory : a relevant tool for Career clarity

Mackenzie’s Theory, also known as the “Trait-and-Factor” theory, is a career development theory that was developed by Frank Parsons and later expanded upon by Donald Super and Anne Roe. This theory suggests that individuals should choose a career that aligns with their personal traits, abilities, and interests, as well as the job requirements and opportunities available in the labour market.

According to Mackenzie’s Theory, career choice involves a three-step process:

(1) self-assessment to identify personal traits, abilities, and interests,

(2) occupational research to identify job requirements and opportunities, and

(3) decision-making to choose a career that aligns with both personal traits and job requirements.

Walter Mackenzie breaks down the nine  intelligences suggested by Dr. Howard Garner and categorises them into three domains that serve as an organiser for understanding the fluid relationship of the intelligences and how the intelligences work in combination with one another. You see a pattern of learning styles grouped into three:  Analytic, Interactive and Introspective of the top3 and bottom 3. 

The relevance of Mackenzie’s Theory to career choice lies in its emphasis on the importance of self-awareness and occupational research in making informed career decisions. By understanding their own traits, abilities, and interests, individuals can identify potential career paths that align with their strengths and preferences. Through occupational research, individuals can gather information about job requirements and opportunities to ensure that their chosen career path is viable and aligns with their goals and aspirations.

Overall, Mackenzie’s theory provides a framework for individuals to make informed and intentional career decisions based on a thorough understanding of their own abilities and interests, as well as the job market.


How Can You Use this Researched Knowledge for getting clarity

You can think about Intelligence as changeable, malleable and improvable, rather than the past mindset of intelligence being stable, fixed and little workable. This is more so for the students or people whose groups bear the burden of negative stereotypes about their intelligence. Think again, psychologists have gathered enough evidence that boys and girls or men and women differ in substantial ways.

To sum up your takeaway:

Believing you have a treasure trove of unexplored potential intelligences. You can map it using the psychometric assessment test.

Everyone has all the intelligences in varying quotas.

  • Believing you can strengthen the stronger frames of intelligences and work on the weaker. Knowledge is power.
  • Intelligence Testing and Exploration is Half- full Glass Getting Fuller. You will need to work upon your study skills, mindset and effort.
  • Believing you can get SMARTER will make you smarter.
  • Understand that  this study is a snapshot in time. It changes.
  • Finally, MI theory and the tests are  meant to empower, not label.
psychometric test

Action Plan: Psychometric Assessment and Career Coaching for career clarity

MI can now be mapped with the help of Psychometric tests that are now being used to help individuals identify their strengths, weaknesses, and preferences and help them in making informed career choices.

For instance, an individual who has strong problem-solving skills may be well-suited to careers in fields such as engineering, science, or mathematics. On the other hand, an individual who has strong interpersonal skills may be more suited to careers in fields such as marketing, sales, or human resources.

Individuals often make career choices based on what they think they want to do, rather than what they are truly suited for. Psychometric tests can provide additional information and help confirm an individual’s career decisions by highlighting the skills, interests, and values that are important for success in that particular career. This can guide individuals to make more informed and confident career choices, reducing the likelihood of career changes and job dissatisfaction.

Further, by understanding their strengths and weaknesses, individuals can take steps to improve their employability in the careers they are interested in. For example, if an individual has a weakness in a particular skill, they can focus on developing that skill to increase their chances of success in their chosen career.

In conclusion, psychometric tests are an important tool for individuals looking to make informed and confident career choices. With deep insight of their strengths, weaknesses, interests, and values, individuals can make decisions that are aligned with their skills and personality, leading to a fulfilling and successful career.

Hence, What can you do?

Rewire your mindset and Do.

If required, Redo your Action Plan by mapping your natural potential and getting mentored by an expert.

​​‘The only constant in life is change “- Heraclitus

Find A Mentor for deep and holistic clarity

I, Vinita Vohra help students in dilemma find Career clarity and purpose in life, helping them to make their life Happy, Healthy and Holistic and Excel using my Triple E Formula Viz. Explore, Evolve and Elevate.

Just knowing is not enough. You need to update your study skills and attitude, personality and Interests  commensurate with the digital age.

 Sign up here to get  Career C.L.A.R.I.T.Y *model and also the psychometric test  and report with inferences and indicators along with mentoring. 

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Know me better.It would be my pleasure in knowing you and if possible helping you. Contact me.

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