Tok course Description 2010-2011 The Short Version



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TOK Course Description 2010-2011 The Short Version

  • Daniel W. Blackmon
  • Coral Gables Senior High

TOK Course Guide 1st Exams 2008

  • You should download the TOK Course Guide from my Teacher’s Website.
  • The TOK Course Guide is the final authority on all questions regarding TOK

My Web Address

  • Teachers.dadeschools.net/dblackmon

My Email Address

  • dblackmon@dadeschools.net

IBO Mission Statement

  • The International Baccalaureate Organization aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.

IBO Mission Statement

  • To this end the IBO works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment.

IBO Mission Statement

  • These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.

IB Learner Profile

  • The aim of all IB programmes is to develop internationally minded people who, recognizing their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world.

IB Learner Profile

  • IB learners strive to be:

IB Learner Profile

  • Inquirers:
    • They develop their natural curiosity. They acquire the skills necessary to conduct inquiry and research and show independence in learning. They actively enjoy learning and this love of learning will be sustained throughout their lives.

IB Learner Profile

  • Knowledgeable:
    • They explore concepts, ideas and issues that have local and global significance. In so doing, they acquire in-depth knowledge and develop understanding across a broad and balanced range of disciplines.

IB Learner Profile

  • Thinkers
    • They exercise initiative in applying thinking skills critically and creatively to recognize and approach complex problems, and make reasoned, ethical decisions.

IB Learner Profile

  • Communicators
    • They understand and express ideas and information confidently and creatively in more than one language and in a variety of modes of communication. They work effectively and willingly in collaboration with others.

IB Learner Profile

  • Principled
    • They act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness, justice and respect for the dignity of the individual, groups and communities. They take responsibility for their own actions and the consequences that accompany them.

IB Learner Profile

  • Open Minded:
    • They understand and appreciate their own cultures and personal histories, and are open to the perspectives, values and traditions of other individuals and communities. They are accustomed to seeking and evaluating a range of points of view, and are willing to grow from the experience.

IB Learner Profile

  • Caring
    • They show empathy, compassion and respect towards the needs and feelings of others. They have a personal commitment to service, and act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment

IB Learner Profile

  • Risk Takers
    • They approach unfamiliar situations and uncertainty with courage and forethought, and have the independence of spirit to explore new roles, ideas and strategies. They are brave and articulate in defending their beliefs

IB Learner Profile

  • Balanced
    • They understand the importance of intellectual, physical and emotional balance to achieve personal well-being for themselves and others.

IB Learner Profile

  • Reflective
    • They give thoughtful consideration to their own learning and experience. They are able to assess and understand their strengths and limitations in order to support their learning and personal development.

Introduction

  • The programme model is displayed in the shape of a hexagon with six academic areas surrounding the core. Subjects are studied concurrently and students are exposed to the two great traditions of learning: the humanities and the sciences.

Introduction

Introduction

  • Diploma Programme students are required to select one subject from each of the six subject groups. At least three and not more than four are taken at higher level (HL), the others at standard level (SL). HL courses represent 240 teaching hours; SL courses cover 150 hours.

Introduction

  • Successful Diploma Programme students meet three requirements in addition to the six subjects.

Introduction

  • The interdisciplinary theory of knowledge (TOK) course is designed to develop a coherent approach to learning that transcends and unifies the academic areas and encourages appreciation of other cultural perspectives.

Nature of the Subject

  • The TOK course, a flagship element in the Diploma Programme, encourages critical thinking about knowledge itself, to try to help young people make sense of what they encounter. Its core content is questions like these:

Nature of the Subject

  • What counts as knowledge?
  • How does it grow?
  • What are its limits?

Nature of the Subject

Nature of the Subject

  • What makes TOK unique, and distinctively different from standard academic disciplines, is its process. At the centre of the course is the student as knower.

Nature of the Subject

  • In TOK they have the opportunity to step back from this relentless acquisition of new knowledge, in order to consider knowledge issues.

Nature of the Subject

  • These include the questions already mentioned, viewed from the perspective of the student, but often begin from more basic ones, like:

Nature of the Subject

  • What do I claim to know [about X]?

Nature of the Subject

  • Am I justified in doing so [how?]?

Nature of the Subject

  • TOK activities and discussions aim to help students discover and express their views on knowledge issues.

Nature of the Subject

  • The course encourages students to share ideas with others and to listen to and learn from what others think.

Nature of the Subject

  • In this process students' thinking and their understanding of knowledge as a human construction are shaped, enriched and deepened.

Nature of the Subject

  • Connections may be made between knowledge encountered in different Diploma Programme subjects, in CAS experience or in extended essay research; distinctions between different kinds of knowledge may be clarified.

Nature of the Subject

  • The course is organized in four broad categories: knowledge issues, knowers and knowing; ways of knowing; areas of knowledge; and linking questions.

Nature of the Subject

  • The categories are not intended to indicate a teaching sequence.

International Dimensions

  • In many ways TOK is ideally placed to foster internationalism, in close harmony with the aims of the IB learner profile.

International Dimensions

  • The TOK aims embody many of the attributes needed by a citizen of the world: self-awareness; a reflective, critical approach; interest in other people's points of view; and a sense of responsibility.

International Dimensions

  • Global controversies often rest on significant knowledge issues that can provide useful starting points for TOK explorations, depending on students' interests and awareness.

International Dimensions

  • T0K activity, in turn, can contribute significantly to the understanding of these large questions.

Aims

  • The aims of the TOK course are to:

Aims

  • develop a fascination with the richness of knowledge as a human endeavour, and an understanding of the empowerment that follows from reflecting upon it

Aims

  • develop an awareness of how knowledge is constructed, critically examined, evaluated and renewed, by communities and individuals

Aims

  • encourage students to reflect on their experiences as learners, in everyday life and in the Diploma Programme, and to make connections between academic disciplines and between thoughts, feelings and actions

Aims

  • encourage an interest in the diversity of ways of thinking and ways of living of individuals and communities, and an awareness of personal and ideological assumptions, including participants' own

Aims

  • encourage consideration of the responsibilities originating from the relationship between knowledge, the community and the individual as citizen of the world.

Objectives

  • Having followed the TOK course, students should be able to:

Objectives

Objectives

  • 2. generate questions, explanations, conjectures, hypotheses, alternative ideas and possible solutions in response to knowledge issues concerning areas of knowledge, ways of knowing and students' own experience as learners

Objectives

  • 3. demonstrate an understanding of different perspectives on knowledge issues

Objectives

  • 4. draw links and make effective comparisons between different approaches to knowledge issues that derive from areas of knowledge, ways of knowing, theoretical positions and cultural values

Objectives

  • 5. demonstrate an ability to give a personal, self-aware response to a knowledge issue

Objectives

  • 6. formulate and communicate ideas clearly with due regard for accuracy and academic honesty.

Traditional TOK Diagram

Traditional TOK Diagram

  • Teachers and students may find figure 1 useful as a pictorial representation of the TOK course.

Traditional TOK Diagram

  • Because the course is centred on student reflection and questioning, the diagram places the knower(s), as individuals and as groups, at the centre.

Traditional TOK Diagram

  • Surrounding the knower(s), four ways of knowing are identified, which permeate an exploration and interpretation of the world:

Traditional TOK Diagram

  • the receipt of stimuli through sense perception, affected, perhaps, by an emotional and spiritual dimension labelled as emotion, formulated and expressed through language, and shaped by attempts, through reason, to seek order and clarity

Traditional TOK Diagram

  • Within the perimeter, areas of knowledge are identified, which represent a classification of knowledge into subject areas, many of which the student pursues in the Diploma Programme.

Traditional TOK Diagram

  • Six such subject areas are included: mathematics, natural sciences, human sciences, history, the arts, and ethics.

Traditional TOK Diagram

  • No solid barrier, however, separates the ways of knowing and the areas of knowledge, because it can be maintained that the questions "How do I know?" (pertaining to ways of knowing) and `What do I know?" (pertaining to areas of knowledge) interact.

Knowledge Issues

  • Knowledge issues are questions that directly refer to our understanding of the world, ourselves and others, in connection with the acquisition, search for, production, shaping and acceptance of knowledge.

Knowledge Issues

  • Among the issues to be explored are the positive value of different kinds of knowledge, and the discriminatory power of methods used to search for knowledge, to question it, and to establish its validity.

The Nature of Knowing

  • In English there is one word “know”, while French and Spanish, for example, each has two (savoir/connaître and saber/conocer). In what ways do various languages classify the concepts associated with “to know”?

The Nature of Knowing

  • How do “believing that” and “believing in” differ? How does belief differ from knowledge?

The Nature of Knowing

  • What are the differences between the following: information, data, belief, faith, opinion, knowledge and wisdom?

Knowledge Communities

  • In the TOK diagram, the centre is represented as both an individual and a group. To what extent can we distinguish between knowing as an individual and knowing as a group or community enterprise?

Knowledge Communities

  • How much of one’s knowledge depends on interaction with other knowers?
  • Are there types of knowledge that are specifically linked to particular communities of knowers?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • How is knowledge gained?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • What are the sources?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • How is knowledge gained?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • What are the sources?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • To what extent might these vary according to age, education or cultural background?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • What role does personal experience play in the formation of knowledge claims?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • To what extent does personal or ideological bias influence our knowledge claims?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • Does knowledge come from inside or outside? Do we construct reality or do we recognize it?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • In what sense, if any, can a machine be said to know something? How can anyone believe that a machine can think?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • Does technology allow some knowledge to reside outside the human knower?

Knowers and Sources of Knowledge

  • Is knowledge even a “thing” that resides somewhere?

Justification of Knowledge Claims

  • What is the difference between “I am certain” and “It is certain”?

Justification of Knowledge Claims

  • Is conviction sufficient for a knowledge claim to be validated?

Justification of Knowledge Claims

  • What are the implications of accepting passionate, personal belief as knowledge?

Justification of Knowledge Claims

  • How are knowledge claims justified?

Justification of Knowledge Claims

  • Are the following types of justification all equally reliable:
    • intuition, sense perception, evidence, reasoning, memory, authority, group consensus, and divine revelation?

Justification of Knowledge Claims

  • Why should time be taken to assess critically the nature of knowledge claims?

Linking Questions

  • Do knowledge claims transcend different communities or cultures?

Linking Questions

  • What differences exist between public and private justifications?

Linking Questions

  • To what extent might this distinction between private knowledge and public knowledge be culturally dependent?

Linking Questions

  • Do the images of a web, building blocks, concentric circles, a spiral, or a grid make a convincing description of the interconnections in the ways of knowing and areas of knowledge?
  • In what ways might these metaphors be useful?

Linking Questions

  • To what extent is knowledge about the past different in kind from other kinds of knowledge?

Linking Questions

  • Does making a knowledge claim carry any particular obligation or responsibility for the knower?

Ways of Knowing

  • Sense Perception
  • Language
  • Reason
  • Emotion

Areas of Knowledge

  • Mathematics
  • Natural Sciences
  • Human Sciences
  • History
  • The Arts
  • Ethics

Linking Questions

  • Belief
  • Certainty
  • Culture
  • Evidence
  • Experience
  • Explanation
  • Interpretation

Linking Questions

  • Intuition
  • Technology
  • Truth
  • Values

Assessment Outline

  • Part 1 External assessment (40 points)
  • Essay on a prescribed title (1,200–1,600 words)
  • One essay on a title chosen from a list of ten titles prescribed by the IBO for each examination session.

Assessment Outline

  • The presentation (approximately 10 minutes per student)
  • One presentation to the class.
  • One written presentation planning document and presentation marking form, using the relevant form
  • from the Vade Mecum, including:

Assessment Outline

  • the knowledge issue that is the focus of the presentation
  • a summary in note form of the knowledge issues to be treated during the presentation
  • achievement levels for each of the four assessment criteria, briefly justified, from both student and
  • teacher.

Assessment Outline

  • The presentation should be an integral part of the TOK course

The diploma points matrix

TOK Points

  • Points awarded for the externally assessed component, part 1, the essay on a prescribed title (40 points), and for the internally assessed component, part 2, the presentation (20 points), are combined to give a total out of 60.

TOK Points

  • The grade boundaries are then applied, to determine the band (A to E) to which the student’s performance in TOK belongs.

TOK Points

  • The band descriptors are:
  • A Work of an excellent standard
  • B Work of a good standard
  • C Work of a satisfactory standard
  • D Work of a mediocre standard
  • E Work of an elementary standard

TOK and the Extended Essay

  • The performance of a student in both Diploma Programme requirements, theory of knowledge and the extended essay, is determined according to the quality of the work, based on the application of the IB Diploma Programme assessment criteria. It is described by one of the band descriptors A–E.

TOK and the Extended Essay

  • Using the two performance levels and the diploma points matrix, a maximum of three diploma points can be awarded for a student’s combined performance.

TOK and the Extended Essay

  • A student who fails to submit a TOK essay, or who fails to make a presentation, will be awarded N for TOK, will score no points, and will not be awarded a diploma.

TOK and the Extended Essay

  • Performance in both theory of knowledge and the extended essay of an elementary standard is a failing condition for the award of the diploma.

Part I: Essay on a Prescribed Title

  • (1200-1600 words)

General

  • Each student must submit for external assessment an essay on any one of the ten titles prescribed by the IBO for each examination session.

General

  • The titles ask generic questions about knowledge and are cross-disciplinary in nature.

General

  • They may be answered with reference to any part or parts of the TOK course, to specific disciplines, or with reference to opinions gained about knowledge both inside and outside the classroom.

General

  • The titles are not meant to be treated only in the abstract, or on the basis of external authorities.

General

  • In all cases, essays should express the conclusions reached by students through a sustained consideration of knowledge issues; claims and counterclaims should be formulated and main ideas should be illustrated with varied and effective examples that show the approach consciously taken by the student.

General

  • Essays should demonstrate the student’s ability to link knowledge issues to areas of knowledge and ways of knowing.

General

  • The chosen title must be used exactly as given; it must not be altered in any way. Students who modify the titles may gain very few or no points, since the knowledge issues that essays treat must be relevant to the titles in their prescribed formulation.

General

  • The essay must be well presented, clearly legible, and, where appropriate, include references and a bibliography.

Acknowledgements and References

  • Students are expected to acknowledge fully and in detail the work, thoughts or ideas of another person if incorporated in work submitted for assessment,

Acknowledgements and References

  • and to ensure that their own work is never given to another student, either in the form of hard copy or by electronic means,

Acknowledgements and References

  • knowing that it might be submitted for assessment as the work of that other student.

Acknowledgements and References

  • Factual claims that may be considered common knowledge (for example, “The second world war endedin 1945”) do not need to be referenced.

Acknowledgements and References

  • However, what one person thinks of as common knowledge, within a particular culture, may be unfamiliar to someone else, for example, an assessor in a different part of the world.

Acknowledgements and References

  • If in doubt, give an authoritative source for the claim.

Acknowledgements and References

  • The principle behind referencing in TOK is that it should allow the source to be traced. The simplest way to achieve this is to use consistently an accepted form of referencing.

Acknowledgements and References

  • Guidance on such matters is available in the Diploma Programme Extended Essay guide or on reputable web sites, for example http://www.wisc.edu/writing/Handbook/Documentation.html.

Acknowledgements and References

  • Students are expected to acknowledge fully and in detail the work, thoughts or ideas of another person

Acknowledgements and References

  • A particular difficulty arises in the context of class notes or discussion. Reference to factual claims or ideas originating from these sources should be as precise as possible (for example, giving the name of the speaker and the date of the discussion).

Acknowledgements and References

  • In cases where factual claims are fundamental to the argument of an essay, high academic standards demand that such claims should always be checked and a proper, traceable source supplied.

Bibliography

  • The TOK essay is not a research paper but, if specific sources are used, they must be acknowledged in a bibliography.

Essay Length

  • The essay on the prescribed title must be between 1,200 and 1,600 words in length. Extended notes or appendices are not appropriate to a TOK essay and may not be read.

Essay Length

  • The word count includes:
    • the main part of the essay
    • any quotations.

Essay Length

  • The word count does not include:
    • any acknowledgments
    • the references (whether given in footnotes or endnotes, any maps, charts, diagrams, annotated illustrations and tables
    • the bibliography.

Essay Length

  • Students are required to indicate the number of words.

Authenticity

  • Teachers must ensure that essays are the student’s own work.

Authenticity

  • It should be made clear to students that they will be required to sign a written declaration when submitting the essay, to confirm that it is their own work.

Authenticity

  • In addition, students must be made aware that their teachers will also be required to verify the claim made in the declaration

Part II: The Presentation

  • Students must make one or more individual and/or small group presentations to the class during the course.

Part II: The Presentation

  • The maximum group size is five.

Part II: The Presentation

  • If a student makes more than one presentation, the teacher should choose the best one (or the best group presentation in which the student participated) for the purposes of assessment.

Part II: The Presentation

  • It is important that the situation that is selected is sufficiently circumscribed, so as to allow an effective treatment of knowledge issues

Part II: The Presentation

  • For this reason, it is wise to avoid topics so unfamiliar to the class that a great deal of explanation is needed before the underlying knowledge issues can be appreciated and explored.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation planning document
  • Each student must complete and submit a presentation planning document.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation planning document
  • This document will summarize the thinking behind the topic, state the specific knowledge issues to be addressed, and present an outline of the intended treatment of them, in a maximum of one typed page.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation planning document
  • It must not be an essay, but should be in skeleton or bullet point form.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • Both students and teachers must fill in the presentation marking form (the reverse side of the presentation planning document).

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • Student presenters award themselves an achievement level for each of the four assessment criteria and briefly justify the level they have given.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • If the teacher considers the student mark accurate, they may simply reproduce it.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • Both students and teachers are required to certify the authenticity of the presentation work.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • Participants in a group presentation should be marked individually, although all may be given the same marks if they have contributed equally.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • In a group presentation, not every student need speak for the same amount of time, but all students are expected to make a contribution and to participate actively.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • Both students and teachers must fill in the presentation marking form (the reverse side of the presentation planning document).

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • Student presenters award themselves an achievement level for each of the four assessment criteria and briefly justify the level they have given. If the teacher considers the student mark accurate, they may simply reproduce it.

Internal Assessment Documentation

  • Presentation marking form
  • Both students and teachers are required to certify the authenticity of the presentation work.

Assessment Criteria

  • Part I: Essay on a Prescribed Title
  • Part II: Presentation

External Assessment

  • Part I: Essay on a Prescribed Title
  • A: Understanding Knowledge Issues (10 marks)
  • B: Knower’s Perspective (10 marks)
  • C: Quality of Analysis of Knowledge Issues (10 marks)
  • D: Organization of Ideas (10 marks)

Internal Assessment

  • Part II: The Presentation
  • A: Identification of Knowledge Issue (5 marks)
  • B: Treatment of Knowledge Issues (5 marks)
  • C: Knower’s Perspective (5 marks)
  • D: Connections (5 marks)

TOK Course Description

  • You will receive more detailed instructions / criteria as the occasion demands.

The End



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