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IB ToK Essay Topics: November 2012

Here are links to the full titles of the six November 2012 IB ToK Essay topics:

I briefly mention some points to consider for each title below; however, the personalised service I offer is tailored to each student.

You should be very wary of simply repeating phrases and words from ToK websites.

In particular, basing your essays on downloaded templates carries considerable risks. First, you don't know with whom you are dealing.

Secondly, your essay will share the same structure as many others and will likely be considered as plagiarised. As an experienced philosophy and ToK examiner I know how easy it is to identify essays with a common source.

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If you require personal help with any of these November 2012 ToK essay topics, I'd be delighted to receive your email: November 2012 IB ToK Essay Topics Enquiry

Title 1: Can we have beliefs or knowledge which are independent of our culture?

Thoughts to consider with essay 1 include:

  • the difference between belief and knowledge
  • two distinct ways of specifying beliefs and knowledge
  • three distinct conceptions of independence
If you require tailored help with topic 1 of the November 2012 ToK essay titles, then I'd be delighted to receive your email: Topic 1 ToK Essay November 2012 Enquiry

Title 2: "It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts" (Arthur Conan Doyle). Consider the extent to which this statement may be true in two or more areas of knowledge.

Thoughts to consider with essay 2 include:

  • two conceptions of the fit between data and theory
  • assumptions concerning the independence of data and theory
  • the philosophy of science and of theoretical knowledge
If you're considering answering topic 2 of the November 2012 ToK essay titles, then I'd be delighted to receive your email: Topic 2 ToK Essay November 2012 Enquiry

Title 3: "Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand." (Albert Einstein) Do you agree?

Thoughts to consider with essay 3 include:

  • the varieties of imagination
  • the assumption that imagination is not itself a form of knowledge
  • the value-relative nature of 'importance'
If you'd like to discuss topic 3 of the November 2012 ToK essay titles, then I'd be delighted to receive your email: Topic 3 ToK Essay November 2012 Enquiry

Title 4: What counts as knowledge in the arts? Discuss by comparing to one other area of knowledge.

Thoughts to consider with essay 4 include:

  • the varieties of arts
  • the distinction between objects of knowledge and ways of knowing
  • the distinction between propositional/factual knowledge and other forms
If you'd like help with topic 4 of the November 2012 ToK essay titles, then I'd be delighted to receive your email: Topic 4 ToK Essay November 2012 Enquiry

Title 5: "Habit is stronger than reason." To what extent is this true in two areas of knowledge?

Thoughts to consider with essay 5 include:

  • the nature of practical deliberation
  • the assumption that reason is not, in some respects, habitual
  • the value-relative nature of 'strength'
If you're considering addressing topic 5 of the November 2012 ToK essay titles, then by all means email me: Topic 5 ToK Essay November 2012 Enquiry

Title 6: "The ultimate protection against research error and bias is supposed to come from the way scientists constantly re-test each other's results." To what extent would you agree with this claim in the natural sciences and the human sciences?

Thoughts to consider with essay 6 include:

  • the theory-relative nature of testing
  • the conception of objectivity assumed by the title
  • important classes of data, from either of the sciences, that cannot be repeated
If you're writing on topic 6 of the November 2012 ToK essay titles, then I'd be happy to receive your email: Topic 6 ToK Essay November 2012 Enquiry
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