Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Prescribed Essay Titles 2010-2011

    Here are the TOK essay titles as published on the IB website. Your essay will be marked according to the assessment criteria. Remember to centre your essay on knowledge issues and, where appropriate, refer to other parts of your IB programme and to your experiences as a knower. Always justify your statements and provide relevant examples to illustrate your arguments. Pay attention to the implications of your arguments, and remember to consider what can be said against them. Include a word count and your list of references using the Harvard System.

    Please see my other posts under "writing an essay" for help and advice. Examiners mark essays against the title as set, using the TOK essay criteria. Please make sure you are familiar with the criteria before starting your essay. Respond to the title exactly as given; do not alter it in any way. Your essay must be between 1200 and 1600 words in length. Remember also that your TOK presentation and essay must be submitted in the same language.

      1. Consider the extent to which knowledge issues in ethics are similar to those in at least one other area of knowledge.
      2. How important are the opinions of experts in the search for knowledge?
      3. “Doubt is the key to knowledge” (Persian Proverb). To what extent is this true in two areas of knowledge?
      4. To what extent do we need evidence to support our beliefs in different areas of knowledge?
      5. To what extent are the various areas of knowledge defined by their methodologies rather than their content?
      6. “There are no absolute distinctions between what is true and what is false”. Discuss this claim.
      7. How can we recognise when we have made progress in the search for knowledge? Consider two contrasting areas of knowledge.
      8. “Art is a lie that brings us nearer to the truth” (Pablo Picasso). Evaluate this claim in relation to a specific art form (for example, visual arts, literature, theatre).
      9. Discuss the roles of language and reason in history.
      10. A model is a simplified representation of some aspect of the world. In what ways may models help or hinder the search for knowledge?
      And the same titles in Spanish:
      1. Considere en qué medida las cuestiones de conocimiento en la ética son similares a las de al menos otra área de conocimiento.
      2. ¿Qué importancia tienen las opiniones de los expertos en la búsqueda de conocimiento?
      3. “La duda es la clave del conocimiento” (proverbio persa). ¿En qué medida es esto cierto en dos áreas de conocimiento?
      4. ¿En qué medida es esto cierto en dos áreas de conocimiento? ¿En qué medida necesitamos pruebas para respaldar nuestras creencias en distintas áreas de conocimiento?
      5. ¿En qué medida están las distintas áreas de conocimiento definidas por sus metodologías más que por sus contenidos?
      6. “No hay distinciones absolutas entre lo que es verdadero y lo que es falso”. Discuta esta afirmación.
      7. ¿Cómo podemos reconocer cuándo hemos avanzado en la búsqueda de conocimientos? Considere dos áreas de conocimiento diferentes.
      8. “El arte es una mentira que nos acerca a la verdad” (Pablo Picasso). Evalúe esta afirmación en relación con una forma artística específica (por ejemplo, las artes visuales, la literatura, el teatro).
      9. Discuta las funciones del lenguaje y la razón en la historia.
      10. Un modelo es una representación simplificada de algún aspecto del mundo. ¿De qué maneras pueden los modelos facilitar o perjudicar la búsqueda de conocimientos?

      Ben Goldacre talks bad science

      In this episode of the podcast "Carpool", my favourite blogger Dr. Ben Goldacre discusses bad science:

      Monday, January 18, 2010

      Performance Art

      Do you think the following videos all show some form of performance art? Are they all of equal artistic merit? If you think no, can you justify why?





      video