Choosing the Right Unit Titles

As we said in our section on integrating TOK, when you start off as a TOK coordinator, there is nothing wrong with basing your unit titles on the areas of knowledge and TOK themes. However, when you pick up a little more experience, and are looking to infuse more originality and sophistication into your course, you’ll realise that this approach can be rather limiting in a number of ways.

Instead, there is a great deal to be said for basing your unit titles on questions that cut across different elements of the course, thus allowing you to explore multiple elements of the course at the same time. This also means that your course becomes instantly more accessible to non-TOK teachers, as they’ll be able to contribute to any question, rather than just ‘their bit’ of the course (such as history, or the natural sciences, or the arts).

We won’t go into too much detail about the content of units, but by offering some exemplar unit titles, you’ll get a clear idea of how a question-based approach to TOK allows you to create a rich, engaging, interlinked course. The unit titles we’ve used here come from theoryofknowledge.net’s Big Question framework, which is now used by many schools around the world. The questions are designed to be explorable via any combination of themes and areas of knowledge, so whilst providing a clear structure for the course, it doesn’t do so in a prescriptive way.

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