Book Definition:

According to Sternberg, the ability to cope with the environment: sometimes called "street smarts".

In Your Own Words

  • Common sense.
  • Knowing how to handle real-life situations
  • Ability to "read" people or decode nonverbal messages


  • Elizabeth knows which parts of town she shouldn't hang around.
  • Sarah knows how to deal with the seedy people when she has to go downtown late at night for work.
  • A car is speeding towards Sally, and Sally knows to quickly swerve out of the way.