Faculty Research at Morehead State University


The Final Dimension of Multiple Intelligence: The Spiritual Taxonomy, a Challenge of Acceptance Shaped by Brain Based Learning.

Document Type


Publication Date



Most educational reforms have been a response to the rigid, compartmentalized, reductionist view of learning that characterizes behaviorism. Behaviorists deliberately avoided the brain. There was little scientific information regarding the brain and even less understanding of its function (Hart, 1981). We have learned more about the brain in the past five years than in the previous one hundred. Almost ninety percent of all neuroscientists who ever lived are alive today (Roberts, 2002). In the 1960’s behavioral psychology gave way to cognitive psychology and the ‘cognitive revolution’ was born (Anderson, 2002). The psychology of facts and rules (behaviorism) has been replaced by the psychology of models and processes (cognitive psychology). The two theories of learning have also been described as situated learning versus constructed learning (Anderson, 2002). B.F. Skinner, a noted behaviorist, indicates in his novel Walden II that learning may indeed be more that a set of conditioned responses and that a brainbased theory may more accurately reflect the needs of students. His character, Frazier, describes education: “Since our children remain happy, energetic, and curious, we don’t need to teach “subjects” at all. We teach only the techniques of learning and thinking...we give our children opportunity and guidance, and they learn for themselves...Education...is part of the community...Its part of the Walden II code to encourage children in all the arts and crafts.” (Anderson, 2002). The movement from behaviorism to cognitivism forced a reevaluation of how humans learn. This was supported by the assumption that learning and thinking indicate a complexity of human cognition that could not be explained by the stimulus response model.