An epitemological position holding that knowledge is actively constructed by the learner, not passively received from the environment.
Construction involves building of abstract mental schema through active engagement with the physical environment (Piaget): child as a scientist.
Prior knowledge schema of the learner play an essential role in the construction (Bartlett).
Since experience is subjective, the knower does not necessarily construct knowledge of a ``real'' world. Objective reality is (neither confirmed nor denied but it is) un-knowable. Shared meaning is an illusion. (Ernst von Glasersfeld, 1974)
The tools that we use affect the way we think. Tools include physical artifacts as well as language and other symbolic systems (Michael Cole, Wertsch, Bill Cobern)
Looks at the socio-cultural context of knowledge construction from the viewpoint of the critical theory of Habermas (knowledge serves three interests - technical control, interpretative understanding and emancipation). Aims at critical awareness of social and cultural myths for the purpose of empowerment. Critical psychology is a movement for psychology to work towards emancipation and social justice.