ERIC Number: ED169074
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Describing Conceptions of the World Around Us. No. 66.
Two perspectives of descriptive research are discussed: first-order, which describes the world as it is; and second-order, which describes the world as people experience it. The latter perspective is known as experiential description. Research in a variety of disciplines, notably the work of Darwin, Werner, and Piaget, has provided experiential descriptions of the qualitatively different ways in which people perceive and understand reality. According to the experiential perspective, conceptions of understanding are not seen as individual qualities, for there can be no conceptions as such, just as there can be no learning and no structures of thought as such. Conceptions of reality are considered rather as categories of description to be used in facilitating the grasp of concrete cases of human functioning. Since the same categories of description appear in different situations, the set of categories is thus stable and generalizable between the situations, even if individuals are moving between the different categories on different occasions. The totality of such categories of description denotes a kind of collective intellect, an evolutionary tool in continual development. (Author/CP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Gothenburg Univ. (Sweden). Inst. of Education.