Book Smart vs. Street Smart

It is constantly debated that being book smart is better than being street smart and vice versa. Personally, I’m not sure what I would prefer to be labeled as but I do know there’s good and bad that comes with each. But what exactly is the criteria for being book smart or being street smart?

Street smart is all about how you handle yourself in certain situations.Those that are street smart are classified as hardworking and diligent people. To become street smart one must be willing to expose themselves to their environment and become comfortable with their surroundings. According to Scott Berkun, experiences play a major role in the development of street smarts, in that they allow you to learn and in turn use that knowledge to improve yourself.


On the other hand, to be book smart you have to be academically insightful, get straight A’s, and be very well educated. Most book smart individuals contain the quality of being able to regurgitate facts and information. However, what differentiates book smart from street smart is the application of knowledge. Again according to Scott Berkun, book smart people lack the ability to apply their knowledge, learned from books, to the real word.

Although in my opinion one does not necessarily need to meet the criteria specifically in order to be street or book smart. Nor can an individual only be limited to one of the two, they can absolutely be a combination of both. Overall, I think the most successful people in our society exemplify both the qualities of street and book smart person.


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