Knowledge Heroes

Knowledge Heroes allows you to draw on the ideas of more than 100 of the most influential thinkers from the past and present, who feature in our three different full-length TOK courses.

There’s a brief bio for each thinker, a key quote, and a discussion of how their work and ideas relate to the TOK course. Related thinkers are also indicated, with a link provided to a relevant lesson, and other media sources that can be used to explore them.

About the resource

Knowledge Heroes is designed to introduce students to some of the women and men who have done most to influence the way we think about, and interact with, the world. It helps students to grasp some of the most important TOK concepts, explained in a clear and engaging way, often from the very person who has formulated it. 

It supports students to craft authoritative assessment tasks, by enabling them to infuse their exhibition commentaries and essays with the thoughts of a wide range of crucial thinkers. Finally, it supports Diploma Programme integration by providing a library of thinkers who can prompt thought and debate about the nature of knowledge in both TOK, and other DP subjects.

Using the resource

Knowledge Heroes is a 38-page PDF booklet. The coloured icon indicates which aspect of the course the thinker aligns to, a brief biography providing you with a background to their life and work, and a quote allowing you to immediately identify the key concept they can help us understand.

We indicate a related exhibition prompt, broader issues that each thinker can help you explore (see Investigating Issues). You’ll also find guidance on how their ideas relate to TOK, similar thinkers, and links to their ideas in the context of a lesson, newsletter, article, or other media source.

Accessing Knowledge Heroes

To see the Knowledge Heroes resource, become a full access member of the site. In the meantime, you can download a sample version of Knowledge heroes here.

RESOURCE UPDATE In Spring 2024, we’ll be creating a padlet version of Knowledge Heroes, with additional key thinkers added. Check back nearer the time!

Help your learners to exit their echo chambers!

Our online and in-person workshops offer the usual support for students writing the essay and exhibition, and TOK departments designing great courses.

But our training sessions go much further than this: by focusing on authentic critical thinking, they demonstrate how to help learners confront, rather than confirm, their biases and assumptions, and exit their echo chambers. This makes them accessible and relevant for all teachers, whatever their subject or programme. Read more here.