Multiple Intelligences: Linguistic Intelligence

Multiple Intelligences: Linguistic Intelligence

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The Theory of Multiple Intelligences It was an interesting starting point in the debate about the nature of a single intelligence. Howard Gardner He raised the existence of different types of intelligences, challenging historical approaches to this construct. In this article, Linguistic Intelligence will be addressed and will deepen its neuroanatomic characteristics and structures.

Among the different types of intelligences, we can find, among them, the logical-mathematical, naturalistic, intrapersonal intelligence, etc. Each of them with its particular characteristics. According to Gardner, we are all gifted with it, however, some develop more than one. Which does not mean that it is worse, but different.


  • 1 Linguistic Intelligence
  • 2 Development of Linguistic Intelligence
  • 3 Where do we find Linguistic Intelligence?
  • 4 Characteristics of people with Linguistic Intelligence
  • 5 Bibliography

Linguistic Intelligence

According to Gardner (1983), linguistic intelligence "It is the ability involved in spoken and written language or, what is the same, the ability to use words effectively, either orally or in writing". The author emphasizes that it implies being in possession of adequate semantic and syntactic knowledge. At the same time, have sensitivity in the use of language, linguistic connotations, its loudness, etc.

"Every human being has a unique combination of intelligence. This is the fundamental educational challenge."

-Howard Gardner-

Armstrong (1999) states that this type of intelligence "includes the ability to manipulate the syntax or structure of language, phonetics, semantics and pragmatic dimensions or practical uses of language".

Some authors emphasize that practice is a necessary condition for the acquisition and development of these skills. Others highlight the importance of memory in this type of ingeligencia. A memory that covers both everyday events and expressions, ideas, terms, etc. Gardner (2017) states that "The gift of language is universal, and its development in children is surprisingly similar in all cultures".

Linguistic Intelligence Development

The development of this type of intelligence can be seen in the first months of a baby's life through babbling. In the first two years the child, little by little, absorbs all those aspects of the language he hears in his day to day. From accent to rhythm. In this way, words are rooted in his memory and he is able to form small sentences.

Between three and five years, the takeoff of this ability is radical and the child is already able to move his thoughts to his environment through oral language. Even so, gestures and facial expressions will help you in communication. Despite its rapid evolution in communication, it still has to expand its vocabulary, learn tenses and, of course, learn to read and write.

"Intelligence, what we consider intelligent actions, is modified throughout history. Intelligence is not a substance in the head such as oil in an oil tank. It is a collection of potentialities that are completed."

-Howard Gardner-

Those children who excel in this type of intelligence can be identified by their love of reading, writing or telling stories. They are usually lovers of everything that involves language, both written and oral.

Where do we find Linguistic Intelligence?

The language system uses both hemispheres. However, their brain support is found in the temporal lobe and in the frontal lobe of the left hemisphere. In this hemisphere, we find the Broca area and Wernicke area. The drill bit area It is located at the bottom of the left frontal lobe and controls the motor level functions related to speech. Its main functions are three: language processing, speech production and facial neuron control.

The Wernicke area It is located at the back of the temporal lobe. This brain region contains the motor neurons responsible for language comprehension. The main functions of the Wernicke area are four: language interpretation, language recognition, language comprehension and semantic processing.

Broca's area like Wernicke's are necessary for the proper functioning of language processing. At the same time, it also highlights the angular gyrus, structure located in the parietal lobe. It is a brain area involved in the use of different types of sensory information for language comprehension. According to studies of Seghier, Fagan and Price (2010), "The angular gyrus is involved in semantic decisions for both verbal visual stimuli (word reading) and nonverbal stimuli (naming objects)".

Characteristics of people with Linguistic Intelligence

Those with strong linguistic intelligence stand out in fields such as reading and writing. The expression of your thoughts through words is one of your strengths. So write stories, stories or give talks, stand out among their strengths. For all these reasons, they tend to be great lovers of reading, writing and telling stories.

The debate as a learning method is usually an ideal way to acquire knowledge. Reading also stands out among learning materials. Anything that has to do with the expression of language, will be a point in favor of such people. They also stand out for their memory to remember events, dates and data.

In this area, writers, poets, screenwriters, political leaders, religious leaders ...


  • Gardner, H. (2017). Multiple intelligences. The theory in practice. Barcelona: Paidós.
  • Gardner, H. (2005). Multiple intelligences 20 years later. Psychology Magazine
    and Education, I, 27-34.
  • Seghier, M., Fagan, E., Price, C. (2010). Functional subdivisions in the left angular gyrus where the semantic system meets and diverges from the default network. Journal of Neuroscience; 30: 16809-16817.