TOK Orals on the Internet: Beware!

Tim Sprod, highly experienced TOK teacher and co-author of one of the best TOK textbooks, recently posted this comment to the IBO’s “Online Curriculum Centre” TOK forum for teachers:

The examples of TOK presentations to be found with a search engine should – in my opinion – NEVER be taken as good exemplars. While there are a few that are good, most of them are not – not good, and in most cases, not TOK presentations. If you are looking at them to find good examples, then you presumably don’t yet have the ability to sort out the good from the bad.

All the ones I have seen that are pre-recorded videos (as opposed to videos of live presentations) have been, to put it bluntly, rubbish – they do not meet the criteria in the TOK Guide, no matter how much the students putting them up claim they do.

If you read recent subject reports, you will find that too many of the presentations that have been sent in for sampling are simply not meeting the specifications laid out in the TOK Guide. (For example, see the May 2013 SR, p 18, pp 20-21, p 22 under General Comments). Not all teachers seem to understand what these are. A lot of these non-TOK presentations seem to make it onto the web. I did an extensive search for good TOK presentations earlier in the year, and found very few.

[Clarification. The official example of a TOK presentation found on the OCC is, as Mark says, “not-so-good in many ways”, but it is a not-so-good TOK presentation, as opposed to a non-TOK presentation.]

In short: don’t go there.


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