Much of the work on validation and verification of knowledge based systems (KBSs) has been done in terms of implementation languages (mostly rule-based languages). Recent papers have argued that it is advantageous to do validation and verification in terms of a more abstract and formal specification of the system. However, constructing such formal specifications is a difficult task. This paper proposes the use of formal specification languages for KBS-development that are closely based on the structure of informal knowledge-models. The use of such formal languages has as advantages that (i) we can give strong support for the construction of a formal specification, namely on the basis of the informal description of the system; and (ii) we can use the structural correspondence to verify that the formal specification does indeed capture the informally stated requirements.