A priori is knowledge that is deduced from first principles. A posteriori is knowledge that results from experience or empirical evidence. Common areas of a priori knowledge include mathematics, logic and thought experiments. For example, you can know that if you add 5 apples and 4 apples you'll get 9 apples, even if you've never seen a physical apple. It is common for scientific theories to be developed and proven with a priori techniques. In many areas, such as physics, a priori proofs are important due to the difficulties and expenses of obtaining empirical evidence. It is common for a well accepted theory to be confirmed with empirical evidence decades or even centuries after being proven with mathematics or logic.
|A Priori Definition||Knowledge or arguments based deductions from first principles.|
|A Posteriori Definition||Knowledge or arguments based on experience or empirical evidence.|
|Origin||A priori and a posteriori both originate from a 13 volume work of mathematics and geometry known as Euclid's Elements first published sometime around 300 BC. The Latin phase a priori can be translated "from what comes before" and a posteriori means "from what comes later."|
|Related Concepts||Tacit KnowledgePropositional Knowledge|
This is the complete list of articles we have written about knowledge management.
If you enjoyed this page, please consider bookmarking Simplicable.
© 2010-2023 Simplicable. All Rights Reserved. Reproduction of materials found on this site, in any form, without explicit permission is prohibited.
View credits & copyrights or citation information for this page.