Intelligence?

The other day, I was talking to my family about college (because apparently that’s a thing I have to worry about now. Cue the panic) and my stepdad said something along the lines of “You got a great ACT score, your GPA is pretty good. You can go where you want.”

To this, I said “But I’m not smart enough for some schools.”

Both of them sort of blew up at me (understandably), saying that of course you’re smart enough and it’s not that you’re not intelligent, it’s that you didn’t have the proper training.

Perhaps this is true. Perhaps if I’d gone to a better school when I was younger, I’d be able to get into the schools that aren’t possibilities now. But, at the same time, you always have the kids that do have the opportunities, that do have the so-called ability, and can’t do it. They pay attention and they study like mad and still, they can’t pass that class, or test, or even finish the homework assignment.

I’ve always been a fairly intelligent person, but only in things like English. I understand that. I don’t understand math, other than Statistics. It doesn’t make sense to me. Does this mean I wasn’t given the proper tools when I was younger, even though clearly my English skills were set? Or do I have a block of some sort that keeps me from understanding “simple” math concepts?

I’m wondering about the nature of intelligence, here, and whether you’re born with the ability to understand subjects/ideas, or if they’re taught to you at a young age so that you get them when you’re older. I think it’s the former. You can always get better at things, but it’s like the left-brain/right-brain debate; you’re naturally better at some things than others.

I could probably make it as something in the English business, somehow. I have at least a bit of understanding of the language, and what it does. I couldn’t make it as anything related to math, because no matter how hard I try, I don’t understand it. If I don’t understand the concept/reasoning, I can’t do it, I suppose.

It’s not necessarily a bad thing. Perhaps I said it wrong before – it’s not that I’m not smart enough for a degree in math, it’s that I don’t understand it enough to do it competently.

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