Descriptive knowledge

Descriptive knowledge, also declarative knowledge or propositional knowledge, is the type of knowledge that is, by its very nature, expressed in declarative sentences or indicative propositions. This distinguishes descriptive knowledge from what is commonly known as "know-how", or procedural knowledge (the knowledge of how, and especially how best, to perform some task),[1] and "knowing of", or knowledge by acquaintance (the non-propositional knowledge of something through direct awareness of it).

The distinction between knowing-how and knowing-that was introduced in epistemology by Gilbert Ryle.[2]


  1. Marc Burgin, Theory of Knowledge: Structures and Processes, World Scientific, 2016, p. 48.
  2. Jason Stanley and Timothy Williamson, "Knowing How", Journal of Philosophy, 98(8): 411–444, 2001.

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