Cultivating Epistemic Empathy in Preservice Teacher Education

This study investigates the emergence and cultivation of teachers' “epistemic empathy” in response to analyzing videos of student inquiry. We define epistemic empathy as the act of understanding and appreciating someone's cognitive and emotional experience within an epistemic activity—i.e., activity aimed at the construction, communication, and critique of knowledge. Our goals are (1) to conceptually develop the construct and contrast it to more general notions of caring and (2) to empirically examine epistemic empathy in the context of preservice teacher education. We discuss tensions in teachers' expressions of epistemic empathy, and we end with implications for research and practice.