The term constructivism is commonly used in the field of education. As a solely pedagogical term, it is helpful in understanding the human learning process. Yet, the term is often bundled together with a variety of overlooked or unconsidered philosophical assumptions that are unnecessary and often detrimental to its pedagogical underpinnings. Many educators unwittingly adopt the concept without understanding or fully delineating what form of constructivism they embrace. This article provides a simple background to help the educator recognize the many permutations of constructivism and helps them to tease out the philosophical baggage that often seems indelibly etched into the concept. Educators must learn to embrace the helpful pedagogy while critically determining for themselves whether to accept the attached baggage.
William G. Perry, Jr. was a pioneer in pointing out the importance and effect of a student's epistemological worldview in matters of education and learning. Over the years, his work has been both criticized and refined, leading to a new burgeoning field known as personal epistemology. Yet, Perry's introduction of the concept of epistemic "commitment" remains both relevant and informative. This article investigates the current state of personal epistemology and Perry's concept of "commitment," while providing both a critique and a discussion of implications for educators from an evangelical Christian point of view.