Constructivism Theory by Deb Allen

“You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself.” - Galileo (Constructivism, 2014)

Description of Constructivism

The roots for the constructivism theory begin in the philosophical and psychological viewpoints and is shown in the works of Piaget, Bruner and Goodman. Constructivism is a branch of Cognitivism. Constructivists believe that want we learn stems from interpretation of the experiences.

Why use it?

"As long as there were people asking each other questions, we have had constructivist classrooms. Constructivism, the study of learning, is about how we all make sense of our world, and that really hasn't changed." (Brooks, 1999)

Example of its application

An example is a learner learning new words through everyday life as opposed to learning that word by reading the dictionary. For the constructionist theory, the learner learns from having knowledge engrained in a situation. With each new activity the learner absorbs more information and knowledge. The learner elaborates and interprets given information. Continued use of the new information, an activity, and context helps the learner; therefore, memory is always being changed with the new information.


Brooks, J. G. (1999). Why Use Constructivism. Retrieved from Applying Learning Theory to Instruction and Assessment:

Constructivism. (2014). Retrieved from Education 2020:

Ertmer, P. A., & Newby, T. J. (1993). Behaviorism, Cognitivism, Constructivism: Comparing Critical Features from an Instructional Design Perspective. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 51-72.

Jonassen, D. H. (1991a). Evaluating constructivistic learning. Educational Technology 31(9), 28-33.