IB ToK Essay Titles and Topics: November 2022
Here are links to ideas and suggestions relating to the the six November 2022 IB ToK Essay topics:
- Topic 1. Within an area of knowledge is it more important to have credibility or power? Discuss with reference to the natural sciences and one other area of knowledge.
- Topic 2. If pushed too far, can open-mindedness itself become restrictive? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
- Topic 3. Is it better to "have questions that can’t be answered than answers that can’t be questioned" (adapted from Richard Feynman)? Discuss with reference to mathematics and one other area of knowledge.
- Topic 4. Why do we seek indisputable evidence when it is so often unattainable? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
- Topic 5. To what extent do you agree with the directive to "measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so" (Galileo Galilei)? Answer with reference to the human sciences and one other area of knowledge.
- Topic 6. If the artist has freedom to interpret past events in ways that are denied to the historian, is this an asset or an obstacle to our understanding of the past? Discuss with reference to the arts and history.
Title 1: Within an area of knowledge is it more important to have credibility or power? Discuss with reference to the natural sciences and one other area of knowledge.
Thoughts to consider with essay 1 include:
- the varieties of power
- the difference between being credible and being correct
- what is meant by "importance" here?
These thoughts, and others, will be developed here shortly: come back soon!
Title 2: If pushed too far, can open-mindedness itself become restrictive? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
Thoughts to consider with essay 2 include:
- the role of imagination in being open-minded
- what is meant by "restrictive" in this context?
- are there limits to what can be coherently questioned?
Title 3: Is it better to "have questions that can’t be answered than answers that can’t be questioned" (adapted from Richard Feynman)? Discuss with reference to mathematics and one other area of knowledge.
Thoughts to consider with essay 3 include:
- is it possible, coherently, to frame a question that admits of no answer?
- what distinguishes plausible from implausible answers to questions?
- which sorts of true propositions can't rationally be doubted?
Title 4: Why do we seek indisputable evidence when it is so often unattainable? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
Thoughts to consider with essay 4 include:
- do we know any indisputable propositions?
- are proofs indisputable evidence?
- what is the difference between rational and irrational dispute?
Title 5: To what extent do you agree with the directive to "measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so" (Galileo Galilei)? Answer with reference to the human sciences and one other area of knowledge.
Thoughts to consider with essay 5 include:
- what is the difference between being measurable in practice and in principle only?
- must we change something that is immeasurable, beyond recognition, in order to render it measurable?
- the difference between accuracy and precision in measurement
Title 6: If the artist has freedom to interpret past events in ways that are denied to the historian, is this an asset or an obstacle to our understanding of the past? Discuss with reference to the arts and history.
Thoughts to consider with essay 6 include:
- must all interpretations of past events be faithful to the facts?
- what makes an interpretation objective?
- if an interpretation is available to the artist, but not the historian, does this mean that it is ineffable?
- 1. Within an area of knowledge is it more important to have credibility or power? Discuss with reference to the natural sciences and one other area of knowledge.
- 2. If pushed too far, can open-mindedness itself become restrictive? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
- 3. Is it better to "have questions that can’t be answered than answers that can’t be questioned" (adapted from Richard Feynman)? Discuss with reference to mathematics and one other area of knowledge.
- 4. Why do we seek indisputable evidence when it is so often unattainable? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
- 5. To what extent do you agree with the directive to "measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so" (Galileo Galilei)? Answer with reference to the human sciences and one other area of knowledge.
- 6. If the artist has freedom to interpret past events in ways that are denied to the historian, is this an asset or an obstacle to our understanding of the past? Discuss with reference to the arts and history.
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IB ToK Essay Prompts for November 2022
Table of contents
- Writing Metier
Every year, students who started IBDP are waiting for IB to share the list of specific prescribed titles for Theory of Knowledge essays. Like in all the previous years, IB opened a list of six topics for TOK essays for the next semester. In the year 2022, November TOK essay titles will be as below.
UPD! November 2023 TOK Essay Prompts
Writing a ToK essay often makes a lot of students nervous. They wait for the list of titles anxiously every year to begin planning how they are going to work on it. For most, it can be very overwhelming. The first and the most important thing is to finalize what topic you will work on. For this, you need first to analyze each topic and understand what it requires.
⏩ Order Originally Written TOK essay ⏪
Once you are done with that, you can begin working. For a good grade, you need to plan adequately before time, and you need to brainstorm so that you can come up with the best work.
Here is the list of Tok essay titles for November 2022. Each topic is explained by our IB experts for your ease. If you are ready to write a 1600 words TOK essay , take a look at these, along with the guidelines given to make your selection and begin working.
ToK Essay topics and titles: November 2022
1. within an area of knowledge is it more important to have credibility or power discuss with reference to the natural sciences and one other area of knowledge. + sample.
In this essay, you need to first break the two key terms down, which are credibility and power. Credibility can be a result of reputation, publication, research projects, and a few other important things. However, power can result from the same factors or others too. So it would be best if you gave examples based on your operational definitions of power and credibility, only after which you can come to a conclusion. You can consider the example of a leader who has power but not credibility, or credibility but not power, or even both. Then you can come to a conclusion based on that.
2. If pushed too far, can open-mindedness itself become restrictive? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
Here, the two key terms are “ open-mindedness ” and “pushed too far.” While “open-mindedness” can be fairly easy to explain, “pushed too far” is highly subjective. So before you begin, you need to clearly state what “pushed too far” means for you. Then, you can give relevant examples in the cultural and social context, where you talk about how open-mindedness can become restrictive. An example can be a leader who abolishes certain rules for his people, but then the freedom that they get automatically curbs them since it harms their own selves. In the same way, you can give examples of instances where open-mindedness has done more harm than good.
3. Is it better to “have questions that can’t be answered than answers that can’t be questioned” (adapted from Richard Feynman)? Discuss with reference to mathematics and one other area of knowledge.
For this title, you can break the essay down into two parts, where you talk about questions that cannot be answered and answers that cannot be questioned. However, the degree of subjectivity is very high here. What one researcher may think is a question that cannot be answered might have very valid answers for it by another researcher. You can compare and contrast those situations by using subjective areas of knowledge like art. An area of knowledge where you can find answers that can’t be questioned is religion. So using examples from areas of knowledge like these, you can make your point.
4. Why do we seek indisputable evidence when it is so often unattainable? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge. + SAMPLE
Here, you need to shed light on ‘indisputable evidence.’ You can see that most things in the world have people giving different opinions on it. The disputes are based on people’s personal beliefs and that is what makes them argue with each other. You can make the argument here about whether or not it is possible to have indisputable evidence in different fields of knowledge. Then you can compare and contrast examples from various fields to make your understanding much clearer.
5. To what extent do you agree with the directive to “measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so” (Galileo Galilei)? Answer with reference to the human sciences and one other area of knowledge.
Initially, this might seem confusing to most, but the basic idea is to understand the difference between being measurable in practice and in principle. When you talk about being measurable, you must also take into account things are beyond recognition so that you could render those as measurable too. In this essay, you can focus on the difference between accuracy and precision to make your point clearer by giving specific examples.
6. If the artist has freedom to interpret past events in ways that are denied to the historian, is this an asset or an obstacle to our understanding of the past? Discuss with reference to the arts and history.
In this essay, you must focus on past events and the ways that people choose to interpret them. Given that there are many different ways in which these events can be interpreted, you need to focus on how this aids understanding and helps us distinguish between different things.
We wish you good luck as you start off with your ToK essay writing. Know that you can do it! Be careful with deadlines and may the force be with you, my friend 😉
Meanwhile, if you are interested, you can check a list of previous TOK essay topics with samples.
The year 2023:
- 2023 May TOK essay prompts
The year 2022:
- May 2022 ToK essay titles
Previous years’ prompts:
- November 2021 ToK Essay titles
- May 2021 Theory of Knowledge essay prompts
Also, you might be interested in a great list of IB TOK presentation topic ideas that will be interesting both for you and your supervisor. Furthermore, we have shared a list of IB TOK exhibition IA prompts for the years 2022/2023 . Have a read and start working on your presentation.
Hope all the suggestions for each topic from our expert TOK essay writers will help you complete the TOK essay. You can also use one of the ToK essay samples for the November 2022 titles that follow all the latest IB TOK criteria. They can be used as an excellent guide to writing a TOK essay.
If TOK essay writing seems overwhelming to you, and you do not want to write a good TOK essay on your own, don’t hesitate to contact our team. We have professionals in our team who have years of experience in writing ToK essays. We can work with you and help you achieve what you want. All you need to do is get in touch with us for your work, and the rest is on us!
I wish you good luck with writing a ToK essay for the year 2022. Now the most important is to select the right topic for you. Should you need some assistance writing a ToK essay. You can always contact my team 😉
⏭ ToK Essay writing help ⏮
Vasyl Kafidoff is a co-founder and CEO at WritingMetier. He is interested in education and how modern technology makes it more accessible. He wants to bring awareness about new learning possibilities as an educational specialist. When Vasy is not working, he’s found behind a drum kit.
November 2023 tok essay prompts explained + samples.
This article is a complete guide to the November 2023 TOK essay prompts, which includes detailed explanations of each prompt along with samples to help students understand them better. It offers practical advice and expert guidance to help students improve their writing skills and succeed in this important assignment. Whether you need help selecting a topic or want to enhance your critical thinking skills, this article provides valuable insights that will help you craft a successful TOK essay.
ToK Essay Titles November 2021 | Explained + SAMPLES
In this article, we will be talking about the six Theory of knowledge essay topics students enrolled in the IB diploma need to be aware of. Just like every year, this TOK November’s topics vary in different elements, and in this article, we will share descriptions about each topic which the students need to keep in their minds when selecting the essay topic for their diplomas.
Prescribed May 2021 IB ToK Essay Titles
This year begins with the prescribed topics for 2021 May IB ToK essays. In this article, we will talk about the six ToK titles that were recently released and discuss the possible questions, responses, suggestions and strategies on how to construct the essay.
May 2022 Theory of Knowledge Essay Titles | Tips + SAMPLES
Already nervous about the BIG ToK essay? We hear ya! From finding the right ToK essay topic to making sure you cover all your basis, ToK essay can be a big deal and frankly overwhelming as well. The key here, however, is forward planning and by the looks of it, you seem to be on the right track!
12 ToK Key Concepts | Explained
This write-up is all about TOK concepts, what they are and how essential they are to help you work your way through things. In total, there are 12 TOK concepts. Let's figure out more about each
AOK and WOK in TOK Essays | Detailed Guide
Areas of knowledge and ways of knowing are two essential concepts that you need first to understand before you begin working on these. To find out more about areas of knowledge and ways of knowing, continue reading!
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IB Tok Essay
Tok essay titles november 2022.
Call / WhatsApp : +91 9717229659 TOK Essay Title 1
Within an area of knowledge is it more important to have credibility or power? Discuss with reference to the natural sciences and one other area of knowledge.
Unpacking the keyword credibility suggests the attribute of trustworthiness, which is impacted by factors like sensory perception, emotion, language, and reason. Power talks about the ability to influence human behaviour with or without resistance. It is imperative to rank the priority of credibility or power.
The KQ pertinent to the title may be ‘Why might some people regard science as the supreme form of all knowledge?’ Dissecting the title through natural sciences, assigns credibility to data through transparency and reproducibility, checking the validity of the information and analytical precision to avoid misinterpretations. The authority granted to science is thanks to the legitimate power of an individual to influence science. Questions arise on whether scientific truth may be validated only by the superpowers in the scientific world.
Another area of knowledge considered may be mathematics, which looks upon precision of data with minimizing errors and uncertainty in assigning credibility. ‘Though a credible mathematical resource needs to be published by a trusted authority, is it always true that the authority is powerful?’ Mathematical power often looks for the inherent logic in mathematics to test the veracity of mathematical ideas. Now that we know about the elements of credibility and power in mathematics, it is intriguing to evaluate which rules over the other.
The pertinent question here is to evaluate to what extent the influencers of credibility are reliable. While these tools help in making credible judgment, the question is whether the sources of credibility are confused with sources which are widely respected, or popular or powerful. Are credible sources a source of reliability because of gaining authority, power, and popularity? Is it always true that authority figures have the power in the knowledge acquisition? How far is it true that celebrities who are proclaimed to exercise some power in the community, influence a knowledge to be considered with high credence quotient?
A robust and rigorous hand-holding by our IB TOK facilitators would help you in the student-led TOK journey. Buy our tutoring packages to make an early start for your TOK essay.
TOK Essay Title 2
If pushed too far, can open-mindedness itself become restrictive discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge..
The attribute of open-mindedness looks for each knower to respect their own identity, historical background, traditions, and cultures and at the same time value the same for others’. As we consider others’ cultures and values to be valuable for evaluation, we tend to grow our exposure by widening our perspective through our experience. Open-mindedness is kind of an intellectual virtue to critically welcome a rational mind and evaluate claims which may not align with ours. However, the most intriguing question is in reconciling the gap of opposing perspectives, are we trying to be too lenient in actually restricting the pursuit of knowledge? Herein, the phrase ‘pushed too far’ gains significance-too far means how far and what’s the threshold to which it can be pushed?
‘Does art enlarge what is possible for us to think and know?’ While in the arts the open-mindedness in welcoming digital media has improvised and widened the scope of print media with first class prints, ‘too much of push’ with such modern infusion in traditional art has changed the innate meaning of rich traditional art by partly making print media obsolete and also devaluing its own identity for such easy accessibility.
Economic psychology welcomes open mindedness in infusing multiple perspectives to analyze the psychological aspects of human behavior. However, the limits in the wide pursuit of knowledge are in social and temporal contextual regards where the contexts.
TOK Essay Title 3
Is it better to “have questions that can’t be answered than answers that can’t be questioned” (adapted from richard feynman) discuss with reference to mathematics and one other area of knowledge..
It is an exciting title to unpack. Unanswerable questions that may or may not have an answer or may not be intended to look for an answer than reinforce the underlying point like rhetorical questions. The first part of the title opens up the window of brainstorming on the reason for the potential existence of unanswerable questions. Though rhetorics do not demand an answer, they pave the path for provoking the thought process hidden in asking the question.
On the other hand, the second part of the title deals with an overwhelming concept of answers that cannot be questioned. Cognitive science gives the endemic right to individual knowers to question every answer they pick up as an information. In fact, epistemological emphasis on knowledge construction gives a lot of value to the inquiry attitude of knowers in not accepting what is available but question and construct. Furthermore, the contestable spirit makes a knower rational, balanced, open-minded, and free of bias. However, the fabric of religious dogmas, superstitions acquired through shared knowledge would restrict a knower from questioning.
Coming to the question of ‘is it better’ unpacks the pertinent thought on ‘for whom is it better’-the knowledge authority or knower.
Examples in mathematics like Hodge conjecture is an example of a question which cannot be answered, though it forms a premise and guideline for long series algebraic cycles. Reflect on the example of universal mathematical constant Pi, which restricts you from questioning its mathematical existence but gives a wide clarity in understanding angles, units of measurement, and our Universe.
Consider the economic principle of ceteris paribus, a fundamental assumption for predictive analysis, or for that matter the assumption behind controlled experiments in human sciences and natural sciences- are answers which require acceptance for a theoretical framework. But how much reliability can it ensure to the experimental result?-is a sheer food for thought.
TOK Essay Title 4
Why do we seek indisputable evidence when it is so often unattainable discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge..
Indisputable evidence suggests incontestability, for having truth. An irrefutable evidence renders an information to a justified true belief-not opening up the scope for further contestability. The pertinent question here is does the concept of indisputable evidence open up the criterion of absolute certainty?
Indisputable evidence however banks on the existence of certainty-but whether certainty exists in reality is a bone of contention.
Dissecting mathematics through ‘Is absolute certainty attainable in mathematics?’ opens up to look through the scope of mathematical propositions and axioms which have objectivity. But to what extent are they attainable? Is it that beyond an optimum level of certainty, the axioms seem to be unattainable because they become uncertain.
Furthermore, in the arts irrefutable evidence is attained through our perceptions and senses. What if the senses are impaired-does the undeniable evidence cloak itself as shared belief? Is such indisputable evidence in the arts marked with subjectivity?
TOK Essay Title 5
To what extent do you agree with the directive to “measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so” (galileo galilei) answer with reference to the human sciences and one other area of knowledge..
The significance of measuring a component through quantifying makes understanding, visualization, and cognition easy and perceivable. Questions arise on whether concepts which are not measurable have importance or are to be considered as trifle and be dismissed.
However, is it possible to measure an unmeasurable or immeasurable concept ? What about concepts like success and stress? In human sciences, attributes like rationality and wants are immeasurable. Questions arise on whether they limit the pursuit of knowledge. To what extent qualitative components are being measured? ‘How does the use of numbers, statistics, graphs and other quantitative instruments affect the way knowledge in the human sciences is valued?’ True that without measurements value-added objectives cannot be attained. While on one hand performance management looks for a deeper understanding of performance through measures, whether performance of employees can always be measured and that too precisely-is indeed a thought to work on. Another example on the impact of measuring the IQ of children would make you mull over the significance of adopting a blanket approach of quantifying everything. Let us look through the lens of the arts. The measurable components of art might be in terms of size, shape, scale and so on. But what about the emotions of the artist infused in the piece of art? Even when we talk of measurement, we need to reflect on the scale of measurement. Is it always a commonly accepted objective scale or a subjective one, too?
TOK Essay Title 6
If the artist has freedom to interpret past events in ways that are denied to the historian, is this an asset or an obstacle to our understanding of the past discuss with reference to the arts and history.
One of the most exciting titles on art and history opens up the perspectives of looking at and understanding history viewed by an artist’s eyes rather than defined by a historian. An artist captures and preserves the culture dated of a historic era through the concomitant style, motifs, colors, and textures. However, the artist has all the freedom to infuse own beliefs, values, background knowledge, memories, imagination, and experience to bring out his or her inner voice through the art-that is to bring out the meaning of the theme. On the other end, a historian explains, analyses, and evaluates a past event based on the primary resources created by witnesses of the events and also secondary resources. Individual perspectives and biases of the interpreter often inflict history. The title focuses on the freedom of an artist, which is denied to a historian. The freedom of interpreting the past events through reconstruction is indeed a challenge for the historians due to lack of sufficient data. However, the variation in the autonomy exercised often leads to discrepancy in the interpretation of the same event. Look at the example of the artist Leonardo Da Vinci’s artwork of Monalisa’s smile which artists perceive and interpret as optical illusion- an aesthetic style of deceiving the human brain with eyes. However, history interprets the sorrowful marital life of the real-life model for Leonardo da Vinci’s iconic painting, Lisa Gherardini, the wife of merchant Francesco del Giocondo – who traded in female slaves shipped in from North Africa. Unpacking exciting examples like this pertinent to the arts and history would surely make us reflect on whether such varying interpretation is an asset or obstacle.
TOK Essay Title 1
Can there be knowledge that is independent of culture? Discuss with reference to mathematics and one other area of knowledge.
One of the AOKs through which you can connect your TOK essay
Which may be the appropriate TOK concepts?
How values and perspectives are innate in the cultures.
Threading TOK essay title 1 May 2022
- The essence of culture can be experienced by the community of knowers through their beliefs, emotions, assumptions and so on.
- Find the nexus between culture and knowledge production. Explore AOKs through the concept of culture. Which AOKs have more predominance of culture in the pursuit of knowledge and which have less? How do you substantiate that culture influences the study of Mathematics? Are there cases where mathematical understanding is not connected to culture? To what extent culture impacts the study of mathematics is your purview of the study.
- While you can cite examples for diverse cultures impacting the innovation of mathematics, can there be evidence that suggests the universality of mathematical study?
How important is the TOK essay?
The TOK essay of 10 marks is a 67% weightage component, which assesses how clear, critical, and coherent you are in your analysis and reflection. Students find it painstaking, for they often lack guidance on how to write the perfect TOK essay. It is not about how knowledgeable you exhibit yourself to be in explaining your research. It is about how you have constructed your knowledge-and that’s where the catch is!
The TOK essay path is not verbose but precise, not descriptive but analytical, not individualistic but holistically balanced.
To what extent do you agree with the claim that “there’s a world of difference between truth and facts”. (Maya Angelou) Answer with reference to two areas of knowledge.
Objectivity, perspective, truth, justification, explanation are concepts that can be coherently used.
Threading TOK essay title 2 May 2022
- Facts and truth are overwhelming. While facts look for verification through evidence, truth coincides and coheres with the real world. Are the concepts straight or are we missing something? What if, how I perceive and filter the information about the surrounding is different from your perception? In such cases, the same truth may or may not correspond to reality when analyzed through different perspectives. Have you thought of the case where you can attribute the surroundings based on your prior beliefs? Are we trying to say that there is a possibility of confirmation bias?
- Analyzing through the arts, questions may arise on what kind of truth is infused in the arts? Can the truth for the arts correspond to reality through scientific evidence or is there some other form of truth we might get to explore? How do fact and truth differ for the arts?
Is there solid justification for regarding knowledge in the natural sciences more highly than another area of knowledge? Discuss with reference to the natural sciences and one other area of knowledge.
The natural sciences
Evidence and objectivity
Threading TOK essay title 3 May 2022
- What are the conduits through which you can justify knowledge? What can make a justification more certain? What is the element of objectivity in justification?
- The natural sciences look for evidence to validate or justify the facts. What is the rationale involved in the justification process? How do we get to ratify a knowledge of the natural sciences?
- What are the ways we can support the justification for other AOK?
How do historians and human scientists give knowledge meaning through the telling of stories? Discuss with reference to history and the human sciences.
Culture, perspectives, certainty, responsibility
Threading TOK essay title 4 May 2022
- What does ‘meaning to knowledge’ connotate? Is it implying the realistic appeal of knowledge constructed? What is the role of stories in weaving through knowledge? Does knowledge become more powerful when weaved through stories?
- What are the foundational blocks for factual history and speculative history? What is the element of certainty in the stories shared by historians? How do you justify the knowledge construction in history? How meaningful is the knowledge in history constructed through stories? Also, the perspectives of historians may inflict neutrality in the pursuit of knowledge.
How can we distinguish between good and bad interpretations? Discuss with reference to the arts and one other area of knowledge.
One of the AOKs through which you can connect your TOK essay title 5
Culture, perspectives, certainty, justification
Threading TOK essay title 5 May 2022
- What is the connotation of acclaiming an explanation as good or bad? While these attributes are attacked by subjective bias, what is the extent of certainty for such interpretations?
- The perspective of looking at an artwork piece may vary. How does inter-cultural influence impact the communication of art through images, sounds, and stories as good or bad?
If we conclude that there is some knowledge we should not pursue on ethical grounds, how can we determine the boundaries of acceptable investigation within an area of knowledge? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
One of the AOKs through which you can connect your TOK essay title 6
The human sciences
Evidence, certainty, justification, responsibility
Threading TOK essay title 6 May 2022
- What is the instrument or filter funnel through which we evaluate the ethical stance of a research investigation? Can ethics be always abided by in an invention? Is the attribute ‘ethical’ subjective and dependent upon perspectives? Can there be impending reasons to bypass the ethical stance in an investigation?
- Through the research on animal behavior to inspect human behavior, there might be reasons for testing. Now, the question is -are such testing unethical? Zoom on ‘the learned helplessness experiment of 1965 conducted by psychologist Martin Seligman’ and critically reflect on the impending need for research and ethical stance involved. Is it that ethics limit the pursuit of knowledge?
TOK essay titles May 2022
The TOK essay of 10 marks is a 67% weightage component, which assesses how clear, critical, and coherent you are in your analysis and reflection. Students find it painstaking, for they often lack guidance on how to write it perfectly. It is not about how knowledgeable you exhibit yourself to be in explaining your research. It is about how you have constructed your knowledge-and that’s where the catch is!
The path is not verbose but precise, not descriptive but analytical, not individualistic but holistically balanced.
To what extent do you agree with the claim that “there’s a world of difference between truth and facts”. (Maya Angelou) Answer with reference to two areas of knowledge.
It is of 10 marks is a 67% weightage component, which assesses how clear, critical, and coherent you are in your analysis and reflection. Students find it painstaking, for they often lack guidance on how to write it perfectly. It is not about how knowledgeable you exhibit yourself to be in explaining your research. It is about how you have constructed your knowledge-and that’s where the catch is!
The writing path is not verbose but precise, not descriptive but analytical, not individualistic but holistically balanced.
The total marks are 10 marks and carries 67% weightage component, which assesses how clear, critical, and coherent you are in your analysis and reflection. Students find it painstaking, for they often lack guidance on how to write the perfect TOK essay. It is not about how knowledgeable you exhibit yourself to be in explaining your research. It is about how you have constructed your knowledge-and that’s where the catch is!
The TOK essay titles May 2022 will be released shortly during September. Students for additional help in planning, understanding the assessment criteria can contact us.
TOK essay is an external assessment component while TOK exhibition is internally marked at school. The IB releases 6 TOK essay titles each year, typically 6 months before the submission. While each school has its own calendar, it is strongly recommended that students must not spend 6 months on TOK essays but meet internal school deadlines.
Like all titles, the TOK essay titles May 2022 must not be altered in any way but used as it is. Any change in the TOK essay title will reduce the grade to be rewarded because it might lose its relevance. Furthermore, if at all there is no relevance due to a change in title, then a student might be awarded a score of zero.
It is strongly recommended that teachers must guide students on explaining the task and what is expected out of them. The teachers must not clarify the explanation of the TOK essay title as it may disturb their course of thinking.
In order to check the progress of students, Planning and progress form is used to arrive at the authenticity of student’s work. There are three interactions that are recorded to note the TOK essay writing journey. This may include:
- Explore the list of the 6 titles
- Discuss initial ideas, preferable in a mind-map kind of structure
- Give feedback on the written content (first draft)
More details on the TOK essay can be found here . Further, students can also check the TOK essay titles for previous years .
More details on Theory of knowledge can be checked here.
More details about TOK essay titles May 2022 will also be published on another website theoryofknowledge.online
Furthermore, details on the Theory of knowledge can be seen here.
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TOK ESSAY GUIDES NOVEMBER 2023
Our new and enlarged (3000-3800 words) specialist publications of TOK essay guides are based on the 2022 Guide Specifications and get you to think about what to do when preparing for your ToK essay.
Essay Guides Nov 2023
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November 2023 Titles at a glance
The ToK Essay questions for November 2023 are usually released in March 2023
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Q1. Knowledge claims, facts and proof.
Q2. Knowledge production, patterns and beauty in Maths and Arts.
Q3. Knowledge acquisition & our relationship with experts.
Q4. Knowledge production & the influence of values..
Q5. Knowledge, understanding and the world in History and N Sciences.
Q6. Knowledge acquisition, information and selection.
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November 2023 Guides
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ToK Essay Guides November 2023
A more detailed view of the guides is given below..., sample guide, title 1: are facts alone....
If facts ‘alone’ aren’t enough to prove a claim, what else, if anything, is there to fill the gap?...
Re ad more ...
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Title 2: if "the mathematician's patterns...".
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Breaking Down TOK Essay Titles 2022
The TOK Essay can be a daunting task, and many of us struggle to even begin out of fear of doing something wrong. Not only are you expected to learn the philosophy of all the areas of knowledge, but now you have to write an essay about it too!?
TOK Essay Titles in Human Sciences
As difficult as this may seem, what most of us need is just a nudge in the right direction, and this is exactly what the following guide will provide. If you’re struggling to begin your essay, don’t know where to start or which title to pick, we’re here to help!
Read on for a simple breakdown of the 6 TOK titles and how to tackle them.
1. Can there be knowledge that is independent of culture? Discuss with reference to mathematics and one other area of knowledge.
The first title is very intriguing for those who are interested in the social sciences! The question posed expects you to discuss whether knowledge and culture are always connected and if knowledge can exist without culture in the first place. You’re asked to consider mathematics and another AoK of your choice. Before we consider which AoK’s are suitable, however, we must establish what it means for knowledge to be independent of culture.
Culture is a very abstract concept, and it can refer to anything ranging from a regional food dish such as Spanish Paella to the entire history, language and moral values of a society. This may seem like a lot to tackle, but a simpler way to look at it is to consider whether knowledge is always defined by culture, or if there are exceptions.
In some cases, culture certainly determines the knowledge we produce. Consider the AoK History, for instance, where the history of a country is closely connected to aspects of culture such as language and morality. Historians use language to write history and their morals (which are defined by culture) to interpret the past, such as who was right or wrong. Both language and morality are aspects of culture, and therefore we can argue that historical knowledge may not be independent of culture!
How about Mathematics, then? We must also consider if knowledge can be independent of culture. In this case, mathematics is largely independent of culture as it is mostly an objective AoK. Knowledge is factual, and facts are absolute. Mathematics has one, universal language spoken by all mathematicians, and 2 + 2 = 4 in any part of the world. Thus, we can argue that mathematical knowledge is indeed independent of culture.
Lastly, don’t forget to support your arguments with real-life examples (RLEs). For history, one option would be to look at how bias affects historical writing. Some historians may have biases, which have arisen from their morals and culture and are reflected in their historical writing. For mathematics, consider the absence of bias and how formulae such as Pythagoras’ Theorem remain universal, and no amount of cultural influence can ever change something which is a fact.
2. To what extent do you agree with the claim that “there’s a world of difference between truth and facts.” (Maya Angelou) Answer with reference to two areas of knowledge.
While prompt 1 gives you one prescribed AoK, this one offers you more choice. Hurray! Or? While this question allows you to select both AoKs, too much choice is often more detrimental than beneficial in the Theory of Knowledge. Here, you’re asked to consider the difference between truth and fact. At first glance, you may be thinking that they’re the same thing and while this is not the case, they are immensely similar. Let’s see how you can approach this…
When considering the meaning of truth and fact, it is always useful to put them into some sort of context. For instance, in the natural sciences, we can argue that there isn’t much of a difference between truth and fact. This is because when a scientific theory such as the theory of evolution is proven, it becomes widely accepted as true and factual. Thus, the definition of truth and fact are virtually inseparable in the sciences.
Another AoK to explore could be history. Here, historians never truly know the ‘truth’ of what happened in the past, and they struggle immensely to recover facts from all sources so that they may piece together accurate interpretations. Therefore, they collect facts in an attempt to reach ever closer to the ultimate truth of what happened in the past, but arguably never achieve this fully. This leads to varying interpretations in history, as historians gather the same facts but may reach different truths from them. In this view, we can argue that facts are the building blocks of truth, rather than truth itself.
3. Is there solid justification for regarding knowledge in the natural sciences more highly than other areas of knowledge? Discuss with reference to the natural sciences and one other area of knowledge.
It’s time for more science! This is probably the most straightforward TOK title this time around, and that’s good news! Not everything has to be complex, even in TOK. Here, you’re being asked to discuss if there is any good reason to regard scientific knowledge ‘more highly’ than other AoKs. In other words, is scientific knowledge ‘better’ than knowledge in other AoKs, and if so, why and how? Let’s dig in!
To make things easier, let’s consider what other AoKs would be suitable choices for this title. In this case, a social science such as history or art would be very suitable. If we consider the arts, knowledge can be defined as the creations of artists such as paintings or music, and the interpretations people have of them. In this view, we can argue that art knowledge is quite subjective as the same song may make one person feel happy and another sad. This is not necessarily a bad thing, as it also makes the arts unique.
Nevertheless, the subjectivity of the arts could also be one reason that scientific knowledge may be regarded more highly, as it is objective and factual. For instance, it is an objective fact that cells are the smallest unit of life, but it is not factual to say that a painting is ‘beautiful’, as beauty is subjective. Then again, maybe facts aren’t everything, and maybe scientific knowledge isn’t better, but simply different from art knowledge. Consider these perspectives and ultimately decide if there is enough justification for the claim.
4. How do historians and human scientists give knowledge meaning through the telling of stories? Discuss with reference to history and the human sciences.
Storytelling is a powerful tool, so much so that experts in the social sciences use it to communicate their research. If you’ve chosen this title, you should begin by considering how knowledge is defined in history and the human sciences, such as psychology.
From the lens of history, you may decide that historical knowledge is a collection of interpretations of the past. Moreover, these are the interpretations of historians who record and teach them, orally or in writing.
These interpretations give historical events meaning by communicating their significance. A potential RLE would be to consider a historical event such as World War 2, and then analyze how historical interpretations teach us to appreciate its significance and not repeat the past.
If we consider the social sciences such as psychology, things can be a bit more complicated and ambiguous. Do psychologists tell stories? Maybe not in the conventional sense, but are research papers on mental health disorders not a type of story, one which teaches us about the disorder and the experiences people have of it? Exactly!
The key here is to consider how knowledge is communicated in history and social science. Thus, your essay should focus on analyzing and discussing the methodology that historians and human scientists use to tell stories.
5. How can we distinguish between good and bad interpretations? Discuss with reference to the arts and one other area of knowledge.
This question is my personal favorite! If you’re a fan of the arts, this is the question for you. What is an interpretation, and what makes it good or bad? In title 4 we considered how historical interpretations tell us about the past, and interpretations in the art are similar. While historians can interpret the past, art critics can judge the quality of an artistic piece. But how can we tell which interpretations are ‘good’ and which are ‘bad’?
When considering this title, make sure to focus on the different types of interpretations we can have within art. Not all interpretations come from professional art critics, as art is free to view by all, and the everyday person can have their own, unique opinion on a piece of art.
A good starting point to explore would be whether one art critic has a better interpretation of a piece of art than the everyday person. Perhaps the critic has professional training and is more qualified to judge the techniques Da Vinci used to craft the Mona Lisa than a casual art enthusiast.
However, art is not only about technique but also about emotion, and the everyday person may be better able to appreciate the subjective beauty of an art piece. Thus, in the arts, it may be difficult to tell the difference between good and bad interpretations, as there are no concrete criteria for determining this.
Through the lens of another AoK, we can see a completely different perspective in the natural sciences. Here, the opinions of experts can be said to always be better than those of the general public. A good RLE could be climate change propaganda, and how scientific knowledge is necessary in order to make educated interpretations.
In the arts, it may be debatable whether the Mona Lisa is a ‘sad’ or ‘joyful’ painting, but in the sciences, global warming is a proven fact, and anything which says otherwise is a ‘bad’ interpretation. Inherently, this question is about the subjectivity of the arts and the objectivity of other AoKs. Just some food for thought!
6. If we conclude that there is some knowledge we should not pursue on ethical grounds, how can we determine the boundaries of acceptable investigation within an area of knowledge? Discuss with reference to two areas of knowledge.
The last prescribed title is one of the most difficult, as it deals with ethics. Here, you’re asked to discuss ethical boundaries within two AoKs of your choice. Some good choices could be AoKs which are very research-based, such as the natural sciences and history. Let’s break this down.
Ethics can be very tricky, as you’re essentially asked to discuss the boundaries between what is ethical and what is not. This is difficult because ethics differ as much from person to person as they do from one AoK to another.
In the sciences, ethical boundaries may refer to experiments involving human trials, for example. How can we determine when a new drug is safe for human testing and is it ethical at all to test on humans?
Similarly, in history, we may consider the issues that arise when researching sensitive topics. For instance, is it ethical to interview holocaust survivors and urge them to remember their past traumas, all for the sake of historical records?
At what point do we draw the line, and how are these ethical boundaries determined? This question is all about methodology and whether methodology within two AoKs is ethical, so if that sounds interesting, this is your go-to title!
Prescribed Essay Titles for Your TOK Essay
The prescribed essay titles above are great for tok essays as they cover ethical grounds that you can discuss with reference and solid justification. Once you have narrowed down these prescribed titles, you can conduct research based on factual knowledge and find specific examples to work with. Then the fun part begins: the essay writing process!
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