- a doctrine that certain traditional concepts, ideals, and skills are to society and should be taught methodically to all students, regardless of individual ability, need, etc.
- philosophy one of a number of related doctrines which hold that there are necessary properties of things, that these are logically prior to the existence of the individuals which instantiate them, and that their classification depends upon their satisfaction of sets of necessary conditions
- the doctrine that education should concentrate on teaching basic skills and encouraging intellectual self-discipline
1939, from Essentialist.+ . Related: