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Philosophy advanced by John Dewey holding that what is most important in a thing or idea is its value as an instrument of action and that the truth of an idea lies in its usefulness. Dewey favored these terms over the term pragmatism to label the philosophy on which his views of education rested. His school claimed that cognition has evolved not for speculative or metaphysical purposes but for the practical purpose of successful adjustment. Ideas are conceived as instruments for transforming the uneasiness arising from facing a problem into the satisfaction of solving it.
Variants of INSTRUMENTALISM
instrumentalism or experimentalism
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on instrumentalism, visit Britannica.com.