I got an A (predicted score) for my TOK (Essay + Presentation). The topic of the presentation was “How can we know if language conveys the exact, intended meaning”.


[Sample excerpts]

Script for TOK Presentation
KQ: How can we ever know if language conveys the exact, intended meaning?

Introduction: Language is the system of words or signs that people use to express thoughts and feelings to each other. However, great variety of people have different experiences on their own, and since every single word carries very extensive meanings, so use of languages, words, can sometimes be understood differently on each perspective. These misunderstandings in real life can create conflicts in teamwork, friendships, and even with the human relations.

Just think about the situation in real life,

Real Life Situation (Knowledge Issue): Two weeks ago, my friend, M, and I had a little debate over the reason why some students rather decide to misbehave and upset their parents. While jumping into a statement that the reason might be because not many of them are given with the opportunity to receive a social recognition for their typically well-received behaviour, my friend M used a phrase ‘minority’ to describe those troublesome teenagers.

And at that point, this question of different interpretations of the same word arose. Since I somehow saw a strong connection between the word ‘minority’ and issues of discrimination around the world, I automatically came to believe that my friend M was trying to define a sort of social hierarchy inside the classrooms, fixing the problematic children at the bottom of the system. So remembering the lesson that all human beings are basically equal, my immediate response to the seemingly vicious ambition of my fellow was to say ‘No, you can’t say that.’

Of course what my friend meant wasn’t to segregate students based on their ability. After some moments of frustration, I realised that my friend, a huge fan of American Baseball Leagues, intended to convey the meaning of ‘being less qualified’ by the word ‘minority’…


  • Total number of pages: 3 pages
  • Topic: How can we know if language conveys the exact, intended meaning
  • Subject: TOK (Theory of Knowledge)
  • The file is in PDF format.