Just wondering, if there's a word for:

One who makes it appear as if they're an expert on a subject while there are also signals (subtly or blatantly noticeable) that this person doesn't know very much on the subject or at least as much as they're acting like they do on the subject; pretending to have much knowledge on a subject matter.

I found pedantic but I don't suppose it's the right word.


2 Answers 2


Most the nouns for that are going to have the same issue as know-it-all in my mind: they feel a little slangy. Here are some:

  • Smart Aleck
  • Braggart
  • Hotdogging

I personally like adjectives if it would work in your sentence. Here are some options there:

  • Overweening
  • Presumptuous
  • Smug
  • Pretentious
  • Overconfident
  • Cocky
  • Conceited
  • Hubristic
  • Cocksure

Pedantic is more someone who is very detailed or formal about their learning to the point of being stuck-up. Pedantic is a pedantic word. It implies that they have knowledge of what they say, but they say it in an unapproachable way.


Pseudo-intellectual - One who attempts to flex intellect that does not exist within his or her own mind.

A person who pretends to be of greater intelligence than he or she in fact is.

A person who affects proficiency in scholarly and artistic pursuits whilst lacking any in-depth knowledge or critical understanding of such topics. http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/pseudointellectual

A person exhibiting intellectual pretensions that have no basis in sound scholarship. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/pseudointellectual

What Are The Characteristics Of Pseudo-Intellectual and How They Differ From Real Intellectuals?

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