Howard Gardner

Howard Gardner

Howard Earl Gardner (born July 11, 1943) is an American developmental psychologist and the John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education at Harvard University . He is currently the senior director of the Harvard Project Zero, and since 1995, he has been co-director of The Good Project. [2]

Gardner has written hundreds of research articles [3] and thirty books that have been translated into more than thirty languages. He is best known for his theory of multiple intelligences, as outlined in his 1983 book Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences . [2]

Early life

Howard Earl Gardner was born July 11, 1943, in Scranton, Pennsylvania , to Ralph Gardner and Hilde (nee Weilheimer) Gardner, German-Jewish immigrants who fled Germany prior to World War II . [4]

Gardner described himself as a “studious child who gained much pleasure from playing the piano”. [5] Although Gardner never became a professional pianist, he taught piano from 1958 to 1969. [3]

Education was of utmost importance in the Gardner home. While his parents had hoped that he would attend Phillips Academy Andover in Massachusetts, Gardner opted to attend a school closer to his hometown in Pennsylvania, Wyoming Seminary . Gardner had a desire to learn and greatly excelled in school. [6]


Gardner graduated from Harvard University in 1965 with an AB in social relations, and studied under the renowned Erik Erikson . He would go on to get his PhD in developmental psychology at Harvard while working with psychologists Roger Brown and Jerome Bruner , and philosopher Nelson Goodman . [4]

For his postdoctoral fellowship, Gardner worked alongside Norman Geschwind at the Boston Veterans Administration Hospital and continued working for another 20 years. [3] Gardner began teaching at the Harvard Graduate School of Education in 1986. Since 1995, much of the focus of his work has been on the GoodWork Project, now part of a larger initiative known as the Good Project that promotes excellence, ethics, and engagement in work, digital life, and beyond.

In 2000, Gardner, Kurt Fischer , and their colleagues at the Harvard Graduate School of Education established the Master’s degree program in Mind, Brain and Education. This program was thought to be the first of its kind around the world. Many universities in both the United States and other countries. Four years later in 2004, Gardner would continue to write about the mind and brain and would publish Changing Minds: The Art and Science of Changing Our Own and Other People’s Minds , a book about seven forms of mind-change. [4]

Theory and criticism

According to Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences , humans have several different ways of processing information, and these ways are relatively independent of one another. The theory is a criticism of the standard intelligence theory, which emphasizes the correlation among abilities, which is more often than normal. Since 1999, Gardner has identified eight intelligences: linguistic, logical-mathematical, musical, spatial, bodily / kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalistic. [7] Gardner is informally considering two additional intelligences, existential and pedagogical. [8] [9]Many teachers, school administrators, and special educators have been inspired by Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences as it is possible for the idea that there is more than one way to define a person’s intellect. [10]

Gardner’s definition of intelligence in education circles [11] and the field of psychology. Perhaps the strongest and most enduring criticism of his theory of multiple intelligences centers on its alleged lack of empirical evidence. [12]Gardner responds that his theory is based entirely on empirical evidence as opposed to experimental evidence. [13] [14]

Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences can be seen both of a continuation of the last century’s work on the subject of human intelligence. Other prominent psychologists Whose contributions variously Developed gold expanded the field of study include Charles Spearman , Louis Thurstone , Edward Thorndike , and Robert Sternberg .

In 1967, Professor Nelson Goodman started an educational program called Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, which began with a focus on arts education and other spans throughout the wide variety of educational arenas. [15] Howard Gardner and David Perkins were founding Research Assistants and later Co-Directed Project Zero from 1972-2000. Project Zero’s mission is to understand and enhance learning, thinking, and creativity in the arts, as well as humanistic and scientific disciplines at the individual and institutional levels. [16]

For almost two decades, in collaboration with William Damon , Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi , and several other colleagues, Gardner has been directing research on the Good Project on the nature of good work, good play, and good collaboration. The goal of his research is to determine what it means to achieve excellence. With colleagues Lynn Barendsen, Wendy Fischman, and Carrie James, Gardner has developed curricular toolkits on these topics for use in educational and professional circles. [17]

Achievements and awards

In 1981 Gardner was the recipient of a MacArthur Prize Fellowship . In 1990 he became the first American to receive the University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Education. [18] In 1985, The National Psychology Awards for Excellence in the Media, awarded Gardner’s The Book Award for Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences , which was published by Basic Books. [19] In 1987, he received the William James Award from the American Psychological Association . [20] In 2000 he received a fellowship from the John S. Guggenheim Memorial Foundation . Four years later Honorary Professor atEast China Normal University in Shanghai. In the years 2005 and 2008 He Was selected by Foreign Policy and Prospect magazines as one of the Top 100 Most Influential public intellectuals in the world. [21] In 2011, he won the Prince of Asturias Award in Social Sciences for his development of multiple intelligences theory. [21]In 2015, he received the Brock International Prize in Education. [22]

He has received 31 honorary degrees from colleges and universities around the world, including institutions in Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, South Korea, and Spain. [23]

Personal life

Howard Gardner is married to Ellen Winner, Professor of Psychology at Boston College. They have one child, Benjamin. Gardner has three children from an early marriage: Kerith (1969), Jay (1971), and Andrew (1976); and four grandchildren, Oscar (2005), Agnes (2011), Olivia (2015), and Faye Marguerite (2016). [5]


  1. Jump up^ Winner, Ellen. “The History of Howard Gardner” . Archived from the original on 2007-06-29.
  2. ^ Jump up to:b Gordon, Lynn Melby. “Gardner, Howard (1943-).” Encyclopedia of Human Development. Ed. Neil J. Salkind. Flight. 2. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Reference, 2006. 552-553. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. Oct. 27, 2014.
  3. ^ Jump up to:c Doorey, Mary (2001). Bonnie R. Strickland, executive editor, eds. Gardner, Howard Earl . The Gale Encyclopedia of Psychology (2nd ed.). Detroit, MI: Gale Group. pp. 272-273, 699. ISBN  0-7876-4786-1 . Retrieved 2014-12-07 . apart from the Gale Virtual Reference Library.
  4. ^ Jump up to:c Anderman, Eric; Anderman, Lynley, eds. (2009). Psychology of Classroom Learning: An Encyclopedia . 1 . Detroit, USA: Macmillan Reference. pp. 423-425 . Retrieved 28 Dec 2014 . apart from the Gale Virtual Reference Library.
  5. ^ Jump up to:b “Howard Gardner’s Project Zero Biography” . . Retrieved 23 August 2016 .
  6. Jump up^ Webber, Jacob. “Gardner, Howard.” Encyclopedia of the History of Psychological Theories. Ed. Robert W. Rieber. Flight. 1. New York: Springer, 2012. 464-465. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. Dec 10, 2014.
  7. Jump up^ “Understanding Multiple Intelligences Theory” . Retrieved 7 August2016 .
  8. Jump up^ “The Theory of Multiple Intelligences: As Psychology, As Education, Social Science As Howard Gardner” (PDF) . . Retrieved 11 October 2014 .
  9. Jump up^ “Home – Mi Oasis” . Mi Oasis . Retrieved 11 October 2014 .
  10. Jump up^ Gordon, Lynn Melby. “Gardner, Howard (1943-).” Encyclopedia of Human Development. Ed. Neil J. Salkind. Flight. 2. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Reference, 2006. 552-553. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. Dec. 8, 2014.
  11. Jump up^
  12. Jump up^ Klein, Perry D (1998). A Response to Howard Gardner: Falsifiability, Empirical Evidence, and Pedagogical Usefulness in Educational Psychology. Canadian Journal of Education . 23 (1): 103-112. doi :10.2307 / 1585969 .
  13. Jump up^ Gardner, Howard. “On failure to grasp the core of MI theory: A response to Visser et al”. Intelligence . 34 (5): 503-505. doi : 10.1016 / j.intell.2006.04.002 .
  14. Jump up^ Gardner, Howard; Moran, Seana. “The science of multiple intelligences theory: A response to Lynn Waterhouse”. Educational Psychologist . 41(4): 227-232. doi : 10.1207 / s15326985ep4104_2 .
  15. Jump up^ “Project Zero: History” . . Retrieved 11 October 2014 .
  16. Jump up^ “Harvard Project Zero” . . Retrieved 11 October2014 .
  17. Jump up^ “Educating for Good Work: From Research to Practice” . British Journal of Educational Studies . 61 : 453-470. doi : 10.1080 / 00071005.2013.829210 . Retrieved 11 October 2014 .
  18. Jump up^ “1990 – Howard Gardner” . . Retrieved 11 October2014 .
  19. Jump up^ “National Psychology Awards for Excellence in the Media” . Retrieved 2014-10-12 .
  20. Jump up^ “Howard Gardner, 2011 Prince of Asturias Award for Social Sciences – The Prince of Asturias Foundation” . . Retrieved 2014-02-10 .
  21. ^ Jump up to:b “Howard Gardner, 2011 Prince of Asturias Award for Social Sciences – The Prince of Asturias Foundation” . . Retrieved 2012-08-13 .
  22. Jump up^ “International Brock Prize in Education Laureates” . . Retrieved 2017-07-19 .
  23. Jump up^ “Howard Gardner” . . Archived from the original on 2012-08-15 . Retrieved 2012-08-13 .