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shenanigans September 24th, 2012 12:00 PM

Booksmart vs Streetsmart
Yeah I made a thread like this a while back and I think we should have it again! Which do you think is more important in life on the whole - being booksmart, i.e. having a wide knowledge of a lot of good qualifications and all that, or being streetsmart, i.e. having strong social skills and being able to handle people well? Further to that, how far do you think that the expression "it's not what you know, it's who you know that matters" applies to the world?


Esper September 24th, 2012 1:25 PM

Booksmarts are harder to gain the older you get. Like how learning languages are easier when you're younger. You train your brain to learn. You can always learn social skills as you get older though, regardless of how much socializing or "training" you did when you were younger. So I would say booksmarts are better to have.

I'm totally biased though because I have more booksmarts than streetsmarts.

Plumpyfoof September 24th, 2012 9:13 PM

Well I like to think of myself as lucky I'm still capable of absorbing as much textbook information as I can and maintain large social groups.

I think booksmart is more important when you're older, ironically it gets significantly harder to train your brain the more you age.
Streetsmarts however are picked up by your surroundings subconsciously, so as a child streetsmarts would be more important, ironically again you need experience which you simply don't have.

gimmepie September 25th, 2012 1:42 PM

Honestly I feel each one is far less effective without the other.

We need book smarts to learn the skills we need to go into a profession but we need social skills to nail the interview.

A politician has to know their stuff but if they can't communicate their ideals and attitudes in a positive manner they'll fail.

We are social creatures and need at least some friends but we can't have friends if we have nothing interesting to contribute to a conversation (this one less and less admittedly).

A person could discover a disaster on the way but without street smarts nobody would listen.

The list goes on but you get my point.

White_Arcanine September 25th, 2012 6:21 PM

Both, honestly. But I don't want to be the person everybody loves, I just want a few friends to sail with, back me up in a fight, and catch me if I fall. And I also don't want to be the smartest kid in the class, just enough to get by. So a little bit of both to balance it out. 'cause if you're too social then you'll probably turnout doing worse in other things, and if you're too focused on working then you won't have any social time.

Crux October 7th, 2012 7:12 PM

I think "street smarts" are more important.
Throughout the existence of man,we have strived to communicate with each other,or else why would we have created languages.
Besides, "street smarts"effect far more then social skills.

"Blunt scissors and fools can be valuable if you make right use of them,redeeming qualities can be found anywhere in anyone." (20 points to anyone who knows what that's from. :D )

In contrast I must admit that I myself am rather ambitious,and require "book smarts" to achieve some of my goals.

Mario The World Champion October 7th, 2012 8:33 PM

I thought bring street smart was, and I'm using the definition from Urban Dictionary,

"A person who has alot of common sense and knows what's going on in the world. This person knows what every type of person has to deal with daily and understands all groups of people and how to act around them. This person also knows all the current events going on in the streets and the ghetto and everywhere else and knows how to make his own right decisions, knows how to deal with different situations and has his own independant state of mind. A street smart person isn't stubborn and actually listens to things and understands it."

There's nothing bad about being book smart, but you need to be out there in the world and know how it works in certain situations If you're only book smart and go out there in the world, you're pretty much naive and fresh meat to be taken advantage of.

gimmepie October 8th, 2012 7:38 AM


Originally Posted by Mario The World Champion (Post 7365349)
I thought bring street smart was, and I'm using the definition from Urban Dictionary,

" A street smart person isn't stubborn and actually listens to things and understands it."

There's nothing bad about being book smart, but you need to be out there in the world and know how it works in certain situations If you're only book smart and go out there in the world, you're pretty much naive and fresh meat to be taken advantage of.

Firstly the quote you gave implies that ALL booksmart people are stubborn and don't listen but I have to disagree there (well doesn't this seem hypocritical). Some of the most adaptive people and some of the best listeners I know are very intelligent (booksmart). I'm sure you didn't intend to give that part any emphasis though.

Secondly, being booksmart does not make you naive or easy to take advantage of, that depends on the person themselves not what areas the excel at. Street smart people aren't less "naive" as such, they just have more social connections than people who are primarily book smart and so find out about things sooner (this probably sounds entirely different to what I'm meaning to say). Naivety isn't a factor of how "smart" you are in an area it is a personality trait, saying a booksmart person is always more naive is like saying an aggressive person would easily beat the cr@p out of a calm person (my analogies suck tonight) a personality trait doesn't always relate to a skill. I'd say it is merely a coincidence that booksmart people are usually more naive than streetsmart people. But really as I have already said it is pretty hard tocontribute to society without a good enough degree of both.

Guillermo October 8th, 2012 7:48 AM

It all comes down to what you want out of life. Personally I think being able to interact well with others and have high social skills is far more important than being booksmart. I personally don't think you don't need to be booksmart to have a well paying job in today's economy, contrary to popular belief. A lot of jobs today require social skills and if you're lacking in them then that's not the greatest impression to put on your employer.

I'm being biased though because while I believe myself to have high social skills, I'm definitely not booksmart. I envy people that are though ahah.

Lance October 15th, 2012 12:50 PM

You won't get very far in life without a little skill in both. Either be a walking encyclopedia, or a charismatic playboy. or you could be a genius playboy billionaire like Iron Man/Tony Stark. You choose.

Hannah October 16th, 2012 9:44 PM

Booksmarts cannot live without streetsmarts, and streetsmarts do not exist without booksmarts, Or at least that's what I think. I'm all equal, 50-50 for me. It all depends on what you really want, actually.

Crux October 17th, 2012 5:16 PM

This does raise an interesting point Laugh.
Both are a certain degree.
Streetsmarts can exist without booksmarts,but it does not go both ways. Booksmarts at core is merely streetsmart that has had all personal aspects removed.
In fact,the books that grant "booksmarts" were written by people who had learned those things by experience,which,as we all know is a major part of streetsmarts.
Back in the middle ages streetsmarts would have been an essential if you wanted to live,sadly in the modern world they aren't as important,which leads to a lot of people who don't have any social skills.

Awesomepulls October 19th, 2012 8:12 AM

I don't really know about this but I think "streetsmarts" is just a weak version of booksmart. From where i grew up and what i learned growing up all streetsmarts did for anyone was keep them out of trouble in a good or bad way. By being booksmart you can learn all characteristics of both descriptions you gave and that would just be being smart in general no label attached to it.

Autistic Lucario November 12th, 2012 4:22 PM

I'm neither, but I still consider myself smart.

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