Senior School Prospectus.
Theory of Knowledge (ToK)
The Theory of Knowledge course, which is a 100-hour two-year timetabled course and is mandatory for all IBDP students, aims to stimulate critical reflection on the nature of knowledge. By focusing on the key question “How do we know?”, this course encourages students to think critically both about the subjects that they are studying and the world around them.
Students compare areas of knowledge as diverse as mathematics and history, the natural and human sciences and the arts. While doing so, they explore the assumptions and value judgments that underlie the claims that people involved in these areas, and the students themselves, make. They are encouraged to explore ToK within the context of their own learning and lives and to consider the impact of cultural and contextual differences on both the production and acquisition of knowledge.
Each student is required - after an extensive period of preparation and drafting - to submit one essay between 1,200 and 1,600 words, from a list of titles prescribed by the IB for each examination session. These include such challenging titles as: Given access to the same facts, how is it possible that there can be disagreement between experts in a discipline? Develop your answer with reference to two areas of knowledge. and “Without application in the world, the value of knowledge is greatly diminished.” Consider this claim with respect to two areas of knowledge. In addition to this, the students present an ‘exhibition’ based on one of the knowledge questions provided by the IBO and complete a commentary of it that includes a concise description of the objects selected for the exhibition and why they were selected. This is then externally moderated by IBO appointed examiners.
Up to three points can be awarded for this work in combination with the Extended Essay.
DP Courses students who do not wish to complete ToK requirements will participate in two semesters of ToK, but will not submit any assessments.