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Active Observation Vs Passive Observation

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Active experimentation and passive observation are, and have been, key processes in the development of knowledge for humankind. For many people, knowledge that has been gained through active experimentation is often perceived as clear, precise and reliable due to the official publishing and confirmation of hypotheses. Passive observation on the other hand, is when one does not experience the event personally but learns from others’ experiences - it is therefore perceived as being more subjective and dependant on what each individual takes and understands from that experience. It is open to changes in as these experiences are shared from person to person. Both active experimentation and passive observation have produced vastly furthered knowledge…show more content…
Some people look at Banksy’s art and attribute different physiological responses. They may admire the artwork, whereas other people consider it graffiti. The active external environment of a person passively observing art also effects the production of knowledge and this is the Schachter–Singer theory based on two factors - physiological arousal and cognitive label . The theory states that when an emotion is felt, a physiological arousal may occur, and a person will use the immediate environment to help understand this emotion. The knowledge based on an event here, is dependent on the specific environment, and sometimes this may cause misinterpretation. As can be seen from the examples above, both passive observation and active experimentation do have multiple personal and societal limitations, which can produce false knowledge, which is…show more content…
Our imagination is a fundamental base in the production of personal knowledge. For example, when someone speaks about a planet which is not observable to us, or in Biology when a teacher asks us to pretend we are a red blood cell and track our journey through the heart, we use our imagination as a method in the production of knowledge. Imagination allows us to be our own puppet masters in the production of personal knowledge, unique to us. Each one of us has a unique imagination, and hence what we see and the knowledge we produce is individual. In the production of knowledge, we do not need passive observation or active experimentation in order to produce knowledge for ourselves, and imagination is an example of this. The planet ‘Kepler-22b’ is extremely far away from Earth and hence not visible to cameras, however, with information gained through active observation and deductive reasoning, artists can imagine what Kepler-22b would look like and hence visualise a knowledge base for teaching . The imagination of Kepler-22b would be the basis of knowledge for society, as any reference to Kepler-22b would be based around this image; this may be false as it is based on a single interpretation, however it is still knowledge for society. The example of Kepler-22b and the use of imagination when creating this hypothetical image does