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Todays Lesson. Course Description What is TOK? Good reasons for knowing something Vague reasons for knowing something Knowledge Issues TOK knowledge words. As such the TOK course is very different to all other IB courses. Some of the key differences are:.

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Todays Lesson

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Todays lesson

Todays Lesson

  • Course Description

  • What is TOK?

  • Good reasons for knowing something

  • Vague reasons for knowing something

  • Knowledge Issues

  • TOK knowledge words


As such the tok course is very different to all other ib courses some of the key differences are

As such the TOK course is very different to all other IB courses. Some of the key differences are:

  • The syllabus consists only of questions to be discussed rather than information that students have to learn;

  • The classroom atmosphere is intended to be one of shared discovery and discussion rather than one of instruction;

  • There is no final examination;

  • There is minimal assessment during the course consisting of one essay which is marked externally and one presentation which is marked internally;

  • The student (and what they know or think they know) is the focus of the course.


What is tok

What is TOK?


What kinds of reasons are good reasons for knowing something

What kinds of reasons are good reasons for knowing something?

  • I know that grass is green, because I can see it

  • I know that the sum of any two odd numbers is always an even number, because I can prove it

  • I know that it is wicked to torture a person

  • I know that I have a headache, because I feel it.

  • I know that I walked home yesterday, because I remember it


Can students find a problem with this

Can students find a problem with this?

  • I know that the velocity of light is 186,000 miles per second, because the physicists say so.

  •  Joan of Arc knew that she would lead the French army, because God revealed this to her

  •  St. Thomas knew that he would be resurrected after his death, because he had faith

  • I know that the number thirteen is unlucky, because everybody says so


Knowledge issues

Knowledge Issues

  • Real Life Situation

  • The threatened stoning of SakinehMohammdiAshtiani in Iran

  • (A current, modern, global issue that will be quickly understood by the audience)

  • Not A Knowledge Issue

  • Where does the idea of stoning as a punishment come from?

  • (This sounds like a history or cultural studies question?)

  • A Weak Knowledge Issue

  • Is death by stoning a barbaric, inhumane and unacceptable form of punishment?

  • (Simple Yes / No debate style question)

  • A Medium Level Knowledge Issue

  • How can we determine what constitutes an acceptable form of punishment?

  • (The focus is more explicitly on knowledge and the question is more open)

  • A Strong Knowledge Issue

  • Is it justifiable for one culture to impose its own values or standards on another?

  • (A very high level topic that can be explored across many different examples / AOKs)


Knowledge issues1

Knowledge Issues

  • Real Life Situation

  • Applying to university and the UCAS tariff system for IB points

  • (A current, but personal issue that is particularly relevant to Year 13 students)

  • Not A Knowledge Issue

  • What is the UCAS tariff system?

  • (This sounds like a question you would ask your careers counsellor?)

  • A Weak Knowledge Issue

  • Is the UCAS tariff system an accurate way of comparing the IB and A-Level systems?

  • (Simple Yes / No debate style question)

  • A Medium Level Knowledge Issue

  • How can we be certain that an 45 points is equivalent to 6.3 A grades at A-Level?

  • (The focus is more explicitly on knowledge and the question is more open)

  • A Strong Knowledge Issue

  • How do we measure knowledge?

  • (A very high level topic that can be explored across many different examples / AOKs)


Knowledge issues2

Knowledge Issues

  • Real Life Situation

  • Watchingi-Robot – computers with human-like intelligence

    • (An general issue raised by the specifically personal experience of watching a film)

  • Not A Knowledge Issue

  • How does a computer work?

  • (This sounds like a computer studies question?)

  • A Weak Knowledge Issue

  • Do computers only know what they are programmed to know?

  • (Simple Yes / No debate style question)

  • A Medium Level Knowledge Issue

  • How can we verify that computers actually know something?

  • (The focus is more explicitly on knowledge and the question is more open)

  • A Strong Knowledge Issue

  • How far is it true to say that human beings and computers know in the same way?

  • (A very high level topic that can be explored across many different examples / AOKs


Key knowledge words to be used in tok essay and presentation

Key Knowledge words to be used in TOK essay and presentation

  • Belief  

  • Evidence

  • Interpretation

  • Certainty 

  • Experience

  • Intuition

  • Culture   

  • Explanation

  • Technology

  • Truth        

  • Values


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