Aims & Objectives

[from the TOK course guide for courses beginning in the fall of 2013]


The overall aim of TOK is to encourage students to formulate answers to the question “how do you know?” in a variety of contexts, and to see the value of that question. This allows students to develop an enduring fascination with the richness of knowledge.

Specifically, the aims of the TOK course are for students to:

  1. make connections between a critical approach to the construction of knowledge, the academic disciplines and the wider world
  2. develop an awareness of how individuals and communities construct knowledge and how this is critically examined
  3. develop an interest in the diversity and richness of cultural perspectives and an awareness of personal and ideological assumptions
  4. critically reflect on their own beliefs and assumptions, leading to more thoughtful, responsible and purposeful lives
  5. understand that knowledge brings responsibility which leads to commitment and action.

Assessment Objectives

It is expected that by the end of the TOK course, students will be able to:

  1. identify and analyse the various kinds of justifications used to support knowledge claims
  2. formulate, evaluate and attempt to answer knowledge questions
  3. examine how academic disciplines/areas of knowledge generate and shape knowledge
  4. understand the roles played by ways of knowing in the construction of shared and personal knowledge
  5. explore links between knowledge claims, knowledge questions, ways of knowing and areas of knowledge
  6. demonstrate an awareness and understanding of different perspectives and be able to relate these to one’s own perspective
  7. explore a real-life/contemporary situation from a TOK perspective in the presentation.

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Not all black and white; the most interesting bits are gray.