Expert Guide For Tok Essay Writing

What is Theory of Knowledge (TOK) Essay and How to Write it

Theory of knowledge essay which is also known as Tok essay is used for an IB diploma that discusses explicit problems and by nature, it is a comparative essay. The theory of knowledge essay has a word count of 1200-1600 approx.

Writing a well-structured Tok essay requires a good knowledge of the subject along with proper examination, analysis, links, comparisons, language, etc. Supporting your thesis with a strong point of view and relevant opinions is the major part of the Tok essay writing.

Having knowledge of Tok essay requirements can represent your best thinking ability and self-awareness about the topics. Having an in-depth knowledge of the topic and the latest insight by justifying important points, assumptions, arguments, implications, counter-arguments, etc. can give a complete analysis of the Tok essay structure.

The thesis is all about a comparative study and the inclusion of new facts and insights which are gained from different sources to complete the chosen study. Using detailed concepts and the right methodology of writing one can create a theory of knowledge essay a wonderful study.

What is Theory of Knowledge (TOK) Essay and How to Write it

What Is TOK Essay?

TOK essay or Theory Of Knowledge essay was introduced by the International Baccalaureate. It consists of approximately 1600 words and is assessed through an oral presentation. The topic of the essay is usually chosen as per the IB established norms.

The students who are enrolled in the IB program in their schools need to score well in the TOK essay. It is important for getting an IB endorsement in their diploma degree.

The Purpose Of Writing A TOK Essay

The goal behind drafting a TOK essay is to dive in and identify the reason behind executing the studies. It helps in understanding the practical applications and real-life involvement of the subjects we study in school. Thus, it is an excellent way to facilitate the academic essay learning application.

A TOK essay is great for enhancing the knowledge and understanding of students’ personal assumptions. It welcomes the diversified approach through distinctive perspectives. It helps learners develop their unique ideology and perception of a situation. This is what requires to excel in the IB TOK essay task.

The Assessment Of A TOK Essay

In the TOK there are primarily two types of assessment tasks involved:

  • A presentation
  • An essay

The essay is drafted as per the questions laid out by the IB organization. Whereas, the presentation motivates the students to assess and explore the possibilities related to the real-life situation via TOK’s approach.

So, what is the motive behind indulging students in carrying out these tasks?

  • The presentation is a great way to analyze a student’s caliber. It shows how capable they are in implying TOK ideas into practical scenarios. However, the TOK essay follows more of a conceptual approach.
  • The IB itself examines the essays. It has to be based on any of the titles prescribed by IB for the exam session.
  • The overall word count is up to 1600 words. This does not include the footnotes, bibliography, etc.

How To Select Title For Your TOK Essay?

The most difficult part is choosing the prescribed title for your TOK essay. Let us share some helpful ways that will make the title selection process easier for you.

  • Take It Easy: It is crucial not to rush things while choosing the essay topic. Stay open to the titles and consider other’s opinions carefully. Process everything slowly and then understand what each essay demands from you.
  • The Bigger Picture: You must try to find out the relationship between the title and the big questions. Analyze where your interest lies. Link them with your syllabus to reap better results.
  • Create A Link With The AoK: Try to figure out the link between the titles and the areas of knowledge. Moreover, focus on the idea of the AoK matching up with your essay’s context.
  • Challenge The Question: You must challenge the question to get a powerful TOK essay outcome. Hence, assess and evaluate all the possibilities related to your essay title. It ensures a critical approach and in-depth thinking.
  • Relate To The Question: It is important to analyze whether or not you are able to relate the title with the real-life experiences. It could be anything, the books you have read, the art pieces you have witnessed, an event you have been a part of.
  • The Real-World Context: Try relating the title with the real-world occurrences. It could be a local issue, a national-level concern, or a globally acknowledged matter.

Remind yourself of the articles, journals, podcasts, shows, documentaries you have come across in the past.

Best TOK Essay Topics In 2021

Best TOK Essay Titles in 2021


  1. “Statistics hide as much as they disclose”. Explain and write about this claim regarding two areas of knowledge.
  2. “Accepting knowledge claims always involves an element of trust.” Discuss this claim with reference to two areas of knowledge.
  3. “The quality of knowledge is best measured by how many people accept it.” Discuss this claim with your reference to two areas of knowledge.
  4. Is it necessary for good explanations to be true?
  5. “Disinterestedness is essential in the pursuit of knowledge.” Discuss this claim with reference to two areas of knowledge.
  6. “Areas of knowledge are most useful in combination with each other.” Discuss this claim with reference to two areas of knowledge.
  7. “One way to assure the health of a discipline is to nurture contrasting perspectives.” Discuss this claim.
  8. Assess and evaluate the role intuition plays in different areas of knowledge.
  9. Does the justification of moral decisions have to be driven by both emotions, and reasons?
  10. “Within areas of knowledge, how can we differentiate between change and progress? Answer with reference to two areas of knowledge.

also read about interesting topics of Pecha Kucha

The Best Structure & Format Practices For TOK Essay

If you wish to accomplish good results in writing tasks, it is important to stick to a specific structure and format. Let us introduce you to the structure followed while drafting a TOK essay paper.

  1. Introduction: It has to be around 150-200 in the word count.
  • Talk about the title of your essay and what makes it hook-worthy.
  • It is vital to define the terms mentioned in the title.
  • Now, select the AoK concerning the essay and also explain what makes them a good choice.
  • Write a thesis statement, whether agreeing, disagreeing, or partly agreeing with the prescribed essay title.
  • Then, share an overview of the context of your essay. It generally involves real-life examples, etc.
  1. Main Body Paragraph 1: The word length could be around 250-350.
  • Here, explore the first area of knowledge of your choice. Share your views on what makes the AoK support or oppose the title.
  • Discuss with a real-life example.
  • Further, utilize the WoK to explain what makes the real-life examples support or oppose the title of your TOK essay.
  • Explain and state whether it is a unique example. Also, discuss whether the example resonates with the majority of the AoK.
  1. Main Body Paragraph 2:The word limit is 250-350 at most.
  • Present a counterargument for the example stated in the previous paragraph.
  • Share a real-life example in the same AoK conflicting with the example in the above paragraph. Use a different WoK.
  • End the paragraph by referring back to the title. Also, share the extent to which your first AoK supports or opposes the thesis statement.
  1. Main Body Paragraph 3: Keep the word count in between 250-350.
  • Here you need to assess and explore the second AoK using concrete examples. Further, describe it through relevant WoKs.
  1. Main Body Paragraph 4: The word limit is 250-350.
  • Just like earlier, share a counterclaim with reference to the previous example. Next, refer to the title and show whether or not the second AoK supports the thesis.
  1. Main Body Paragraph 5
  • This is not necessary. You can include another paragraph if the TOK essay word limit allows. Here, you can compare and contrast the second AoK.
  1. Conclusion
  • Restate the thesis or refer back to the title. Share an overview after a thorough analysis of the title. It is best to keep a balance among the arguments. Share your learning and support it with relevant examples.
  • Emphasize the importance of the answer to the question.

Tips To Write A Winning TOK Essay

Here are some exciting tips that will strengthen your TOK essay writing game!

  • Understand The AOK and WOK: The areas of knowledge and ways of knowing are the two most important elements of TOK essay writing. They help in highlighting the knowledge scope of a question. Thus, include nearly 2-3 WOKs and AOKs.
  • Awareness Of The Terminology: You need to be well-versed with the terms related to the TOK essay title. It helps you score higher on the assignment.
  • Counter Attack Your Preferences: This is a helpful strategy for constructing relevant claims and arguments. When you challenge a personal bias in your TOK essay writing, it helps you look into the issue from a different perspective.
  • Research: Work on your research skills and explore new sources. It helps in generating a powerful argument that supports the thesis from every angle. You can look into the notes, relevant websites, or even take expert assistance.
  • Craft An Outline: The outline helps you keep the entire piece logically organized. It ensures you cover up all the relevant points and develop a strong write-up.
  • Assess The Previous TOK Essays: It is always a great idea to go through the previously written TOK essays.  You can learn how to transition between two arguments, and set the tone.

Final Thoughts

TOK essay follows a specific approach that is used for drafting a successful copy on the prescribed title. Knowing how to write a TOK essay can help you fetch the IB scores.

Thus, one must possess the ability to think critically and formulate arguments as well as counterarguments. We have also shared the tips that will help you craft a well-structured and informative essay.