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Friday, February 12, 2010

Triarchic Theory of Intelligence
Robert Sternberg (1985) proposed the triarchic theory of intelligence. Sternberg views intelligence as “the ability to adapt, to shape and select environment to accomplish one’s goals and those of one’s society and culture”. According to this theory, there are three basic types of intelligence: Componential, Experiential, and Contextual. The elements of the triarchic theory of intelligence are shown in Figure below.

Componential Intelligence : Componential or analytical intelligence is the analysis of information to solve problems. Persons high on this ability think analytically and critically and succeed in schools. This intelligence has three components, each serving a different function. First is the knowledge acquisition component, which is responsible for learning and acquisition of the ways of doing things. The second is the meta or a higher order component, which involves planning concerning what to do and how to do. The third is the performance component, which involves actually doing things.

Experiential Intelligence: Experiential or creative intelligence is involved in using past experiences creatively to solve novel problems. It is reflected in creative performance. Persons high on this aspect integrate different experiences in an original way to make new discoveries and inventions. They quickly find out which information is crucial in a given situation.

Contextual Intelligence : Contextual or practical intelligence involves the ability to deal with environmental demands encountered on a daily basis. It may be called ‘street smartness’ or ‘business sense’. Persons high on this aspect easily adapt to their present environment or select a more favourable environment than the existing one, or modify the environment to fit their needs. Therefore, they turn out to be successful in life. Sternberg’s triarchic theory of intelligence represents the information processing approach to understand intelligence.

Planning, Attention-arousal, and Simultaneous-successive (PASS) Model of Intelligence

This model has been developed by J.P. Das, Jack Naglieri, and Kirby (1994). According to this model, intellectual activity involves the interdependent functioning of three neurological systems, called the functional units of brain. These units are responsible for arousal/attention, coding or processing, and planning respectively.

Arousal/Attention : State of arousal is basic to any behaviour as it helps us in attending to stimuli. Arousal and attention enable a person to process information. An optimal level of arousal focuses our attention to the relevant aspects of a problem. Too much or too little arousal would interfere with attention. For instance, when you are told by your teacher about a test which s/he plans to hold, it would arouse you to attend to the specific chapters. Arousal forces you to focus your attention on reading, learning and revising the contents of the chapters.

Simultaneous and Successive Processing : You can integrate the information into your knowledge system either simultaneously or successively. Simultaneous processing takes place when you perceive the relations among various concepts and integrate them into a meaningful pattern for comprehension. For example, in Raven’s Progressive Matrices (RPM) Test, a design is presented from which a part has been removed. You are required to choose one of the six options that best completes the design. Simultaneous processing helps you in grasping the meaning and relationship between the given abstract figures. Successive processing takes place when you remember all the information serially so that the recall of one leads to the recall of another. Learning of digits, alphabets, multiplication tables, etc. are examples of successive processing.

Planning : This is an essential feature of intelligence. After the information is attended to and processed, planning is activated. It allows us to think of the possible courses of action, implement them to reach a target, and evaluate their effectiveness. If a plan does not work, it is modified to suit the requirements of the task or situation. For example, to take the test scheduled by your teacher, you would have to set goals, plan a time schedule of study, get clarifications in case of problems and if you are not able to tackle the chapters assigned for the test, you may have to think of other ways (e.g., give more time, study with a friend, etc.) to meet your goals.

These PASS processes operate on a knowledge base developed either formally (by reading, writing, and experimenting) or informally from the environment. These processes are interactive and dynamic in nature; yet each has its own distinctive functions. Das and Naglieri have also developed a battery of tests, known as the Cognitive Assessment System (CAS). It consists of verbal as well as non-verbal tasks that measure basic cognitive functions presumed to be independent of schooling. The battery of tests is meant for individuals between 5 and 18 years of age. Psychology 10 The results of assessment can be used to remedy cognitive deficits of children with learning problems. This model represents the information processing approach to intellige

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