Short Speech on “Human Abilities”

January 19, 2019 0 Comment

Some Psychologists like Binet view inte­lligence as a general capacity for comprehension and reasoning that manifests itself in many ways. Some Psychologists like Thorndike, Thurstone and Guilford argue that there are several types of intelligence. At least three kinds of intelligence have been pointed out by Thorndike. These are abstract, concrete and social.

Our capacity to understand and deal with verbal, numerical and other symbols is called ‘abstract intelligence’. This type of intelligence is very useful in school and college situations.

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The capacity to understand and deal with people in general is called social intelligence. Social intelligence is very important for being successful in life. People who have high abstract intelligence but low social intelligence are mise­rable failures in life. However, usually abstract and social intelligence go side by side.

The ability to understand and deal with things (other than living beings) is called ‘concrete intelligence’. People with high concrete inte­lligence can effectively deal with machines, mend appliances or contract new ones.

Out of these three types of intelligence, abstract intelligence is that most important. The individual requires abstract reasoning ability to solve lest items like finding out the shortest route in the maze, supplying the missing part of a picture, etc. In fact, the test constructors appear to believe that true differences in the individuals can be assessed only by measuring the development of abstract intelligence at various levels.

Thurstone suggested seven Primary Mental Abilities namely, Verbal Comprehension, Word Fluency, Number, Space, Memory, Perceptual speed & Reasoning. Charles Spearman proposed that all individuals passes a general intelligence factor called the g factor and in addition to this general factor, each activity has specific or S factors.

To summarise, intelligence includes what the intelligence test measures, efficient problem- solving abilities, the power of understanding, and the ability to think abstractly.

Wechsler the psychologist, who developed two of the most widely used intelligence scales, defines in­telligence as the,

“Aggregate or global capacity of the individual to act purposefully, to think ratio­nally, and to deal effectively with his environ­ment.”


Aptitude refers to an inherent capacity or potential to benefit from training in some particular field. It is a hidden talent which surfaces after training. Aptitude is not whatever we have achieved so far but what we can achieve in future if we get proper training and environ­ment.


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