I am unashamedly here to champion the International Baccalaureate (IB) programme. This is not because I feel compelled to do so, as BCB’s IBDP Coordinator. No, this is because I wholeheartedly believe in the approaches to teaching, learning and knowledge that the IB advocates. My belief in the IB has only been heightened during this strange new reality we find ourselves in. I want to specifically discuss one aspect of the IBDP, Theory of Knowledge (TOK).
In all subject areas IB students are expected to critically analyse information, reaching judgements based on credible and accurate information. However, in TOK students are expected to think critically about knowledge itself and reflect upon how our personal or societal affiliations can affect how we make sense of knowledge. This focus has become increasingly important under the reformed 2022 TOK curriculum which places the knowledge and the knower as the core theme of the course considering how we acquire, verify and use knowledge about the world.
Having young people exploring and developing this level of critical thought has never been more important. We are at a point in history where information about all aspects of our world is available at any moment. However, having the ability to think critically about information; where it has come from; the purpose for which it was produced; identifying that which is misleading or falsified, couldn’t be more important. In our current reality this critical thinking could be the difference between maintaining or jeopardising the health and safety of ourselves and those around us.