International Baccalaureate (IB) is an educational system offering high-quality challenging academic programs for students aged 3- 19 years. Four exceptional programs are provided under this system that focuses on enhancing critical thinking and problem-solving skills, mainly concentrating on encouraging diversity, curiosity, international mindedness, and a healthy learning environment.
THIS BLOG INCLUDES:
1. Structure of TOK
2. The Step-to-Step Guide for a Great TOK Essay are:
3. An Example of a TOK Essay
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The four programs that are offered as categorized age wise:
Diploma Program (DP) – This program is anchored by its broad subject groups, in which the students select specific courses paved towards their personal interests or professional aspirations. This way, they feel in control of their own education, increasing their motivation to complete the coursework and succeed in a specific subject. The five subject groups are – Language and Literature, Language Acquisition, Individuals and Societies, Sciences, Mathematics, and the Arts.
Apart from these five subjects to be chosen one each from each of the subject group, the IBDP students need to mandatorily complete the three core elements of the course. The core elements aim at nurturing and fostering international mindedness with the final goal of developing responsible global citizens.
The three core elements of the IBDP are:
As an inquiry into the different ways of knowing, and the different kinds of knowledge, TOK is entirely composed of questions.
The most important one, “How do we know?”, while the other ones that automatically tag along are:
Through discussions of these question and other questions as well, the students gain greater awareness of their personal and ideological assumptions and an appreciation of diversity and richness of cultural perspectives.
You would want to look at all the prescribed titles and choose one of them. Sometimes the simple one may not be the best one and the complicated ones may be more interesting. The essay you write must more importantly answer the prescribed title. So, every paragraph you write must relate to the title question. Consider two to three titles before you freeze on the final one.
Now that you have selected your prescribed title, you need to choose the AOK which you explore. Some titles would require you to explore two AOKs, so you would need to choose two AOKs.
Say one or two interesting things about the prescribed title you have chosen. Define one or two key terms in the title and finally give a road map for the reader. This clarifies how you are exploring the essay question and what AOks are being used in the essay. This way, the reader will know what to expect in the essay.
Here you would explore your claim for AOK1. State your claim – a topic sentence that outlines your argument related to the prescribed title. Give supporting example for your claim. The example needs to be relevant, precise, strong, and real. Finally explain how the example supports your claim.
Argue against your claim above. And as mentioned above, you need to give supporting example for the counter claim and explain how the example justifies it.
Sum up, linking to the prescribed title and highlight the insights you have had about this chosen AOK and the prescribed title.
This is similar to the paragraph 2, but you work with the AOK2.
This is similar to the paragraph 3. You argue against the claim in the paragraph 4 and work with the AOK2.
This is the conclusion paragraph. Explain what insights you have made, related to the prescribed title and synthesize the insights you have made from the two chosen AOKs. Explain and clarify how it matters that we understand these insights. Finally, try to give a different perspective in your conclusion, perhaps a different way of approaching the question, which leads to different insights other than you have discussed. Or you could also mention a unresolved question or limitation that your research and exploration revealed.
The role of analogy is to aid understanding rather than to provide justification. To what extent so you agree with this statement?
The writer uses the first paragraph is explain the use of analogies to acquire knowledge – for understanding and for providing justification. And says that the essay is to explain the role using the two AOKs – Natural Sciences and Ethics.
The Second paragraph explores the Ethics AOK using the example of ‘determination rules and Descartes Evil Genius argument to support the claim that Analogy is used for justification in Ethics.
The Third paragraph explores the Natural Sciences AOK. Since there is no empirical data in Natural Sciences, analogies operate to communicate abstract theories through comparison through more relatable scenarios. The write uses an example of a Standard model in physics and supports the claim that the analogies are there to aid understanding rather than justification. He then moves on to give examples to show necessity for empirical evidence for an analogy to become justification.
In conclusion he arrives at the claim that the Analogy is versatile in all Areas of Knowledge in its ability to aid understanding and provide justification depending on how it is used. He also mentions a limitation in analogy statements in the Ethics AOK – how deductive analogies are impossible due to complexities, and how inductive analogies are possible given a set of certain criteria, although the conclusion may be less reliable.
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The purpose of IBDP – TOK is to encourage students to reflect on the nature of knowledge and how it is acquired, and to consider the extent to which knowledge can be trusted and verified.
Tips for succeeding in IBDP – TOK include reading course materials carefully, developing critical thinking skills, practicing writing clear and concise essays, using examples to illustrate points, and staying up-to-date with current events and developments.
A common mistake to avoid when writing an IBDP – TOK essay is failing to consider alternative perspectives or counterarguments.
You can improve your critical thinking skills for IBDP-TOK by questioning assumptions, evaluating evidence and arguments, and considering different perspectives and viewpoints.
A knowledge question in IBDP – TOK explores the nature of knowledge and how it is acquired and requires critical thinking and analysis to answer.