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May 2014 Help with tok title 2 examples

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So I've chosen title 2 -“There are only two ways in which humankind can produce knowledge: through passive observation or through active experiment.†To what extent do you agree with this statement?

 

I'm having trouble finding examples. I know this focusses mostly on the natural and human sciences, but can someone help me with examples of these in the Arts - especially Literature? 

 

The examples from the Natural Sciences are going over my head. I'm thinking of Economics and Psychology for the Human sciences. 

 

Would really appreciate the help.

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for the Arts ones, I think it's a good idea to use personal examples (they loves this stuff). When you read a book, say your WIT text, what are you doing? Reading a book; passive enough. But you are still gaining knowledge in a way. But then you can counter that with saying, is it really passive though? When you are reading a book, you are effectively being experimented on by authors in a sense.

 

Psychology is also pretty good; but I'd advise you to do it in an area that is your current subject. I don't know much about economics or psychology, but there's heaps of experiments in the Natural Sciences that can be a double-edged sword. For example, the Mesehlson-Stahl experiment (forgot the spelling), yes there is some experimentation involved, but knowledge is still gained from analyzing the results.

 

Good luck, I just ranted on and hopefully you've got some ideas.

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How can i get specific examples though? I'm also looking at a priori and a posteriori knowledge. Examples of that? I guess I don't know how to identify them

I suggest you use Google for this. Basing it on your cultural understanding and then stem it further.

Talking to your TOK teachers is often a good idea, and don't forget to use the TOK website

 

Priori and Posteriori knowledge sounds like it can link quite well, but you really need to think how you've got the knowledge. Is it from personal experience (which requires reflection and evaluation on your part), or from empirical data?

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Passive observation = learning from those before

Active experimentation = contributing to the store by which others can learn from

 

Put that way, any professional generating new or previously unknown content (scientist, writer, painter, historian, whatever) is contributing to the shared knowledge of humanity through active experiment. Any student, who is accumulating the knowledge of others through consumption or analysis of their work, is engaged in passive observation.

 

In this framework, astronomy, for all that it doesn't actually perform experiments on stars, is still working through active experimentation, as the academia is constructing novel theories and working to confirm or falsify them. A student absorbing and analyzing the theories already identified would be passive, as they would not be generating new content.

 

I don't know if this is accurate, but it seems like a good framework to work off of.

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you could actually try giving examples based on anthropology.......there's a techniques for investigation which is just called observation, so find any anthropologist who has done any ethnography with that technique....hope i helped

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