TOK essay

TOK essay is the externally marked activity that accounts for 2/3 of the TOK grade.

Approach: choose 1 out of 6 prescribed titles published by the IB for your exam session (for the May sessions the titles are published on September 1st of the previous year). Narrow down to 2 Areas of Knowledge you are going to analyse in your essay (you may want to choose 2 contrasting ones for a better effect).

Length: up to 1600 words

Form: comparative/analytical essay

Allowed: referenced quotes, personal examples

Not allowed: dialogs, poems, unreferenced quotes

References: all sources must be acknowledged (Academic Honesty)

The essay is marked using a holistic approach.


Source: Theory of knowledge guide (2015)

Source: Theory of knowledge guide (first exams 2022)

For other TOK essay advice review:

Tim Woods’ Top 10 Tips for Scoring High on the TOK Essay and “How to Structure a TOK Essay” , and “How to Meet all TOK Essay Requirements”

Amy Burvall‘s vlogs with advice based on Richard van Lagemaat book