I would like to phrase something for which I am missing a word and I don't know whether it exists. Consider the following three perspectives.

  • Learning from books
  • Learning from the experience of others
  • Learning from experience

Is there a word for "the experience of others" in this context?

  • Just 'learning from experience' implies it is your own primary sensory experience so is entirely not what you are looking for. "Experience is the teacher of fools" (Livy)
    – Mitch
    Feb 4, 2019 at 14:58
  • There's the phrase "A wise man learns from his mistakes", which gave rise to the pithier version "A fool can learn from his mistakes, a wise man learns from other people's mistakes". Calling it "wise man learning" would confuse everyone though, so this isn't much use to you...
    – AndyT
    Feb 4, 2019 at 15:07
  • @AndyT Wise man learning like dead man walking. It's amazing how these things catch on.
    – Lambie
    Jul 11, 2022 at 17:05

1 Answer 1


vicarious learning TFD

learning through indirect experience.

Learning from the experience of others v. learning from experience:

What is the difference between vicarious learning and observational learning?

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