Learning and Value Change

Abstract

Accuracy-first accounts of rational learning attempt to vindicate the intuitive idea that, while rationally-formed belief need not be true, it is nevertheless likely to be true. To this end, they attempt to show that the Bayesian’s rational learning norms are a consequence of the rational pursuit of accuracy. Existing accounts fall short of this goal, for they presuppose evidential norms which are not and cannot be vindicated in terms of the single-minded pursuit of accuracy. I propose an alternative account, according to which learning experiences rationalize changes in the way you value accuracy, which in turn rationalizes changes in belief. I show that this account is capable of vindicating the Bayesian’s rational learning norms in terms of the single-minded pursuit of accuracy, so long as accuracy is rationally valued.