4 Nature of the SubjectThe TOK challenges students and their teachers to reflect critically on diverse ways of knowing and areas of knowledge, and to consider the role which knowledge plays in a global society.It encourages students to become aware of themselves as thinkers, to become aware of the complexity of knowledge, and to recognize the need to act responsibly in an increasingly interconnected world.
5 Nature of the SubjectThe TOK programme is composed almost entirely of questions.The most central of these questions is ‘How do I, or how do we, know that a given assertion is true, or a given judgment is well grounded?’The questions have been grouped into four broad categories: Knowers and Knowing, Ways of Knowing, Areas of Knowledge and Linking Questions.
11 Ways of Knowing and Areas of Knowledge Language and EmotionsHistoryMethods of data collectionValidity of sourcesUniqueness as a body of knowledgeObjectivity vs subjectivity
12 AimsDevelop a fascination with the richness of knowledge, and an understanding of the empowerment that follows from reflecting on itDevelop an awareness of how knowledge is constructed, critically examined, evaluated and renewed, by communities and individualsdevelop an understanding of why critically examining knowledge claims is important
13 Aimsdevelop a critical capacity to evaluate beliefs and knowledge claimsmake interdisciplinary connectionsconsider that knowledge may place responsibilities on the knowerunderstand the strengths and limitations of individual and cultural perspectives
14 Knowers and Knowing Knowers and Knowing Nature of Knowing Knowers and Sources of KnowledgeJustification of Knowledge Claims
15 Ways of Knowing Perception Language Nature of Perception Limitations of PerceptionLanguageNature of LanguageLanguage and KnowledgeFunctions of LanguageLanguage and Culture
16 Ways of Knowing Reason Emotion Nature of Reason Reason and Knowledge Strengths and Weaknesses of ReasonEmotionNature of EmotionEmotion and Knowledge
17 Areas of Knowledge Mathematics Definition of Mathematics Mathematics and RealityMathematics and Knowledge Claims
18 Areas of Knowledge Natural Sciences Definition of the Natural Sciences Natural Sciences: Methods of Gaining KnowledgeNatural Sciences and Knowledge ClaimsNatural Sciences and ValuesNatural Sciences and Technology
19 Areas of Knowledge Human Sciences Definition of the Human Sciences Human Sciences: Methods of Gaining KnowledgeHuman Sciences and Knowledge ClaimsHuman Sciences and Values
20 Areas of Knowledge History Definition of History History: Methods for Gaining KnowledgeHistory and Knowledge ClaimsHistory and Values
21 Areas of Knowledge The Arts Definition of the Arts The Arts: Methods of Gaining KnowledgeThe Arts and Knowledge ClaimsThe Arts and ValuesThe Arts and Knowledge Perspectives
22 Areas of Knowledge Ethics Definition of Ethics Ethics: Methods of Gaining Knowledge and Knowledge ClaimsEthics and ValuesEthics and TechnologyEthics and Knowledge PerspectivesEthics and Politics
23 TOK Points TOK Points Points awarded for: External Assessment: the Essay (1,200-1,600 words) on a Prescribed Title (40 points)Internal Assessment: the Presentation (approximately 10 minutes per student) (20 points)both are combined to give a total out of 60.
24 Sample Assessment Topics A sample Essay Title:“We see and understand things not as they are but as we are.” Discuss this claim in relation to at least two ways of knowing.Sample Presentation Topics:Plastic surgeryBanning of videogames Media and society