Definitions of Knowledge

Definitions of Knowledge

The knowledge is a set of information stored by experience or learning (a posteriori), or through introspection (a priori). In the broadest sense of the term, it is about the possession of multiple interrelated data that, when taken by themselves, have a lower qualitative value.

For the Greek philosopher Plato, knowledge is that which is necessarily true (episteme). On the other hand, belief and opinion ignore the reality of things, so they are part of the realm of the probable and the apparent.

Knowledge characteristics

According to, knowledge has its origin in sensory perception, then it reaches understanding and finally ends in reason. Knowledge is said to be a relationship between a subject and an object. The knowledge process involves four elements: subject, object, operation and internal representation (the cognitive process).

The science believes that to achieve knowledge, it is necessary to follow a method. The scientific knowledge should not only be valid and consistent from the logical point of view, but also should be tested by the method scientific or experimental.

The systematic way of generating knowledge has two stages: basic research, where the theory is advanced; and applied research, where the information is applied.

Classification according to type

When knowledge can be transmitted from one subject to another through formal communication, we speak of explicit knowledge. On the other hand, if knowledge is difficult to communicate and is related to personal experiences or mental models, it is implicit knowledge.

There are, therefore, several possible paths to acquire new knowledge. On the one hand, there are those that we are involuntarily incorporating at every moment, as part of our development: all those fundamental actions to live, which include the use of cutlery to eat, personal hygiene and even running and jumping. We didn’t decide to learn those things, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t push ourselves.

At this point, the influence of an elder is necessary, which in some cases is exercised by parents, in others by teachers, family members or legal guardians. But already from our early childhood we can show more or less desire to learn things beyond the basics, and that is how many vocations arise: boys and girls who without apparent explanation approach a piano, a canvas, or that unfold a peculiar dexterity with a ball, and they begin a special path of exploration.

Already in adulthood, the study becomes much more structured, even for those who choose alternative paths, typical of the self-taught. Thanks to the experience we acquire in childhood, we know that certain practices are especially suitable for concentrating, that we should not exceed the number of hours in a row, that it is convenient to contrast the concepts using at least two different sources and that the greatest wealth is found in putting knowledge into practice. No matter in which area we move, theory is never enough.

The fixation and transmission of knowledge

Various psychological and medical studies show us that knowledge is much more firmly fixed in our brain if we accompany the learning process with certain physical actions, be it speaking, moving parts of the body or singing, among others. There are those who believe that reading aloud is detrimental to memorization, and this is a matter of debate because personal preferences come into play; however, for new words or short texts, supplementing silent reading with oral repetition can help us remember them.

Sharing knowledge is an act as generous as it is beneficial, because by passing our wisdom to others we also reveal blank spaces and mistakes. By receiving a response from the other, we have the opportunity to improve, constantly and dynamically moving from the role of teacher to that of student.

Definitions of Knowledge