Posted: May 23rd, 2015
The main reason knowledge is produced is to solve problems. To what extent do you agree with this statement?
a. What are the key words & terms that need pinning down?
The PT uses the phrase main reason for the production of knowledge, which means that you dont have to think in absolute terms theres scope to argue theres more than one reason for the production of knowledge (but the solution of problems is the most important one).
To solve problems also needs some consideration: what, for example, are you going to define as a problem? For different AOKs, problems come in different forms. For mathematics, a problem may be purely abstract. For ethics, it may involve the difficulties in applying moral principles. For human sciences, a problem may resemble a challenge to society that has to be overcome.
The essay is therefore suggesting, that all questions are leading questions, and that it isnt possible to ask or investigate knowledge without having a preconceived notion of what you want to find.
b. What are the difficulties and challenges of the question?
This is a broad question, because of the different ways in which solving problems can be interpreted. The solving of problems could easily lead you away from a consideration of knowledge, and onto more practical issues elated to the areas of knowledge. This would create an essay based on first rather than second order knowledge.
It may also be hard to establish a hierarchy of reasons for knowledge production sure, one of the reasons for knowledge is to solve problems, but how can we meaningfully measure its importance alongside other reasons for its production?
c. What knowledge issues & associated WOKs/AOKs could be explored?
d. What sort of real life situations could be drawn on?
e. Which perspectives and implications could be considered?
This has to be written to the specifications of the International bachalaurete’s idea of IB
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