Epistemological beliefs: Issues for marketing educators
While considerable attention has been paid to epistemological issues in relation to marketing and consumer research (Anderson, 1986, 1988; Easton, 2002; Hunt, 1991, 1992; Kavanagh, 1994), epistemology does not figure as a matter of concern in the literature on marketing education (Abernethy & Padgett, 2011; Brennan, 2013; Urbancic, 2009). However, there is considerable evidence that students’ beliefs about the nature of truth and knowledge —their epistemological beliefs—are a matter that should be of concern to university educators (Hofer, 2000, 2001). Further, in this paper we argue not simply that students’ epistemological beliefs (EBs) should be of concern to university marketing educators, but that in the field of marketing in particular students’ EBs are a matter of concern. In short, this is because of the nature of marketing and marketing education; a discipline in which fundamental epistemological questions remain unanswered and may be unanswerable, and a field of academic and professional practice where sensitivity to epistemological issues is particularly pertinent.