- Abstract Education has been regarded as the major factor in epistemological development. However, academic and other aspects of educational experience are difficult to disentangle. In the present study, 86 Israeli students in the same selective department differed by whether they had done mandatory army service before the university or would do it after. This difference allowed a comparison between epistemological levels of students with different social experiences but with similar academic experiences. Those with the socially diverse army experience were less likely to have absolutist thinking about everyday knowledge contexts. Those with more years of education had more sophisticated academic-context epistemological beliefs in their discipline only.