Epistemic virtue

The epistemic virtues, as identified by virtue epistemologists, reflect their contention that belief is an ethical process, and thus susceptible to the intellectual virtue or vice of one's own life and personal experiences. Some epistemic virtues have been identified by W. Jay Wood, based on research into the medieval tradition.


Being an epistemically virtuous person is often equated with being a critical thinker and focuses on the human agent and the kind of practices that make it possible to arrive at the best accessible approximation of the truth.[1][2]

Epistemic virtues include conscientiousness[3] as well as the following:[2]

These can be contrasted to the epistemic vices such as:

Note that, in this context, curiosity bears the medieval connotation of attraction to unwholesome things, in contrast to the positive studious (or perhaps inquisitive).

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Bishop, M., & Trout, J. D. 2004. Epistemology and the Psychology of Human Judgment. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  2. ^ a b Pigliucci, Massimo (2017). "The Virtuous Skeptic". Skeptical Inquirer. 41 (2): 54–57. Archived from the original on 2018-11-09. Retrieved 9 November 2018.
  3. ^ Greco, John. 2011. Zalta, Edward N. (ed.). "Virtue Epistemology". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy..


  • W. Jay Wood, Epistemology: Becoming Intellectually Virtuous (InterVarsity Press, 1998)
  • Robert C. Roberts and W. Jay Wood, Intellectual Virtues: An Essay in Regulative Epistemology (Oxford University Press, 2007)
  • Linda Zagzebski, Virtues of the Mind (Cambridge University Press, 1996)
  • Michael DePaul and Linda Zagzebski, eds. Intellectual Virtue (Oxford University Press, 2003)
  • Lorraine Daston and Peter Galison, Objectivity (Zone Books, 2007)

External linksEdit