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The art of Learning : What is Tripod of Education?

The author is a medical student with a weird sense of humour and spends a great deal of time exploring human psychology.


We, humans have been strolling this Earth for quite a long time. Since the advent of society in the Pleistocene age, the wheel of evolution has never halted for this particular variant of bi-pedal mammals. From the revolutionary invention of wheels to gradual advancement at being able to break the sound barrier, humans really have progressed within a span of only one million years. Now if one is to ask how has all of these been possible? The answer should revolve around the concept of TRIPOD of EDUCATION (T.o.E.) i.e. knowing, studying and understanding. In short it is safe to say that humans have a unique way of learning followed by the phenomenon of invention which commences from birth via the method of T.o.E.

Tripod of Education (T.O.E)

Tripod of education is a theory which states that education, both institutional and self-acquired stands on the basis of three factors(Studying,Understanding,Knowing) in an orderly fashion. Addition of more factors like, experimenting will actively make the process more efficient, however removal of any one factor will surely collapse the entire system.

T.O.A starts from birth or according to some scholars from the last few months of gestation. A baby starts to learn by studying. Things like recognition of mother's voice by hearing, identifying its father by seeing are all manifestation of studying. It’s hard to sort out such traits on such a small level but with age it becomes evident that studying is an natural animal instinct, in case of humans the final proof being presentation of reading-writing feature. Each observation teaches a child to store data in the form of memory and eventually via analysis the brain either finds or accepts a solid reason behind any scenario. Thus comes understanding in the form of undeniable truth. Human brain is programmed in such a fashion that without understanding ( proof of undeniable truth) it can not use any data for application. Once the process of understanding is complete we can apply it as knowledge to solve real life complications. Thus acquire experience and be able to relate. The process of knowing commences once we can relate our experiences to our understanding of any scenario. Thus our cycle of T O.A process is complete and we start learning. With time and effort ,learning leads to feats like discovery and invention thus paving the path for evolution.

For a better understanding of Tripod of Education an in-depth of the following topics are mandatory .


1.Concept of Studying :

Study” originates from the latin word “studium” meaning zeal or painstaking application. Basically studying refers to the act of devotion energy and time for the sole purpose of learning. So studying is that stage of learning which begets physical and mental labour,hence the terns – zeal and painstaking application.

2.Concept of understanding :

Understanding means to get a grasp of an object or concern of knowledge. Understanding is something that is instinctively embedded in mind, not something that can be acquired institutionally. It is more of an application based concept. Understanding of any concept allows anyone to take actions accordingly and more importantly provides anyone with the intuition of grasping entities of knowledge. In short “Understanding “ can be compared to ‘Virtue’ while knowledge is compared to ‘ truth'.There are three stages of understanding.

A. Literal

B. Inferential

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C Propositional.

Literal understanding infuses the raw data into mind followed by Inferential understanding, which allows one to compare the data acquired. Finally propositional understanding qualifies one on making a hypothesis.


3.Concept of knowledge:

Knowledge as per quoted by Plato is an established fact that can be justified under any circumstances and therefore accepted universally as truth. Now Truth can only be justified if it is objective, hence knowledge can only be applied to something that has an undeniable existence. Here comes the twist (or to some extent controversy) of existence. In the past people only theorized existence of an the state of being Physically present. However being physical can not be the only criteria for existence, concepts if proven correct also falls under the defination of existance. Therefore Aristotle rightly classified knowledge into three classes, namely,

a. Episteme- scientific knowledge

b. Techne- knowledge of craft

c. Phronesis- knowledge of ethics.

So as per our understanding knowledge is something which requires a lengthy methodology of understanding, hypothesis and experimentation to be established. Once established, knowledge is available to everything and is a mere issue of memorization to acquirable.


Are you ready to learn?

People often wonder why the idea of T.O.E becomes less effective with time. The answer is quite simple. Human beings by nature are more curious before coming of age. That is as we gradually grow up, our mind begins to corrupt with the factors which delays the process of learning, such as phenomenon of lethargy, idle behaviour, loss of interest, drastic mood swings etc. All of these gradually bind us in a cosy sphere of comfort zone. Learning can only begin when one steps out this so called comfort zone. Now this is evident that childern are more prone to learning due to their lack of idea of comfort zone.



This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Hasibul Islam Apon

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