Cognitive object

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The object of knowledge ( object of knowledge , object of research , object of thought ) is understood in the theory of science to be the object of a science .


Sciences differ primarily in their object of knowledge. Every single science has an object of knowledge to which it aligns its research goals and methods. The object of knowledge arises from an object of experience that reflects the perceived reality . From the object of experience, the object of knowledge arises through mental isolation of some interesting features of the object of experience. While the object of experience encompasses the entire real state of affairs , some features of the object of knowledge are emphasized from the object of experience with a specific objective. It is therefore obtained from the object of experience through intellectual abstraction and selection , arises from the mapping of the object of experience and represents a model system of the object of experience.


A scientific discipline can be characterized by its knowledge object, its knowledge goals and research methods. Scientific knowledge ( knowledge ) refers to the object of knowledge. The object of knowledge aims to find regularities for certain practical and theoretical questions ( called invariances in the philosophy of science ) and to determine cause-effect relationships that can be developed into regularities. However, the delimitation of the objects of knowledge from each other sometimes creates difficulties, so that there can be overlaps.

For example, the company is the object of experience in business administration , which it got its name from. However, the company is a complex subject of investigation, so that business administration focuses only on the management of the company, while other operational aspects ( industrial psychology , industrial and industrial sociology ) are left to other scientific disciplines. Thus, doing business in a company is the object of knowledge in business administration. The object of knowledge in public finance is the financing of public budgets through taxes and the effect of taxes on the economy . The higher-level economics, in turn, examines the macroeconomic processes as an object of knowledge, i.e. the interdependencies between the aggregated sectors of companies , households , state and foreign countries .

Some disciplines also have to share an object of knowledge. In the natural sciences , for example , iron is the object of knowledge in physics , chemistry or mineralogy . Of course, these disciplines each have a large number of other objects of knowledge, but each discipline examines iron for its own purposes (physics, among other things, in magnetism , chemistry, among other things, in chemical compounds , mineralogy examines the formation, properties and use of iron). For physics and chemistry, the object of knowledge in the broad sense is all of nature . The subject of research in physics is generally considered to be the physical characteristics of nature (the physical form of the forms of movement of matter), while the object of knowledge in chemistry is the chemical properties (the forms of chemical movement of matter).

Cognitive subject

The subject of knowledge is man . The epistemology is the relationship between knowing subject and object of knowledge on the subject. In doing so, she examines the conditions of observation in the human cognitive process and formation, conditions and nature of cognition. Historical knowledge is also possible because the human being as the subject of knowledge is also a necessary actor in history . In this way, the cognitive subject also largely shapes the cognitive object of historical science , namely the exploration of aspects of the human past .

Individual evidence

  1. Hans-Joachim Forker: The profitability principle and the profitability principle. 1960, p. 92.
  2. Wolfgang Korndörfer: General Business Administration. 1989, p. 35.
  3. Armin Töpfer: Successful research. 2009, p. 40.
  4. Armin Töpfer: Business Administration. 2007, p. 18 ff.
  5. ^ Günter Wöhe : Introduction to general business administration. 2013, p. 8.
  6. Helmut Schmalen: Basics and problems of business administration. 2002, p. 15.
  7. Julian V. Bromlei: Ethnos and Ethnography. 1977, p. 190.
  8. Friedrich Jaeger, Jörn Rüsen: History of Historicism. 1992, p. 150.