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Knowledge and Inquiry

H2 KNOWLEDGE AND INQUIRY (SYLLABUS 9759)


Aims


Knowledge and Inquiry (KI) is an elective H2 subject that focuses on the nature of knowledge and its construction in areas of knowledge (AOKs) such as the sciences, the social sciences, mathematics, history, ethics and aesthetics. Students will be engaged in critically evaluating what is regarded as knowledge.

In the course of studying KI, students will develop:
  • An understanding of the nature of knowledge
  • An understanding of the ways of constructing knowledge in different fields
  • An awareness of the ethical dimensions of knowledge construction
  • Critical thinking skills
  • A capacity for independent learning
  • An ability to communicate clearly and convincingly.

KI counts as a contrasting subject for both Science and Arts subject combinations, and replaces both GP and another H1 subject. The final KI grade will be equivalent to the same grade for these 2 H1 subjects.

Pre-requisites to offer subject
  • Good L1R5 of 9 and below (raw score)
  • Good EL Grades (A1 or A2)
  • Success at a selection test, consisting of at least an essay and critical thinking component.

Approach


KI as a subject is conceptually distinct from traditional subjects. The KI syllabus emphasises learner-centredness, negotiated learning and spiral progression. Students are encouraged to engage with the syllabus and construct a learning experience that is meaningful for them. Students would be given opportunities to confront new information and experiences in the search for meaning. Teachers and students also work together as they explore concepts and their applications at increasing levels of difficulty.

As students are regarded as peer tutors and given opportunities to negotiate their own learning experience, KI is suitable for high-ability students with a broad interest in critical inquiry and thinking. Students who are inquisitive and read widely will do well in the subject. Independent learners who are capable of self-directed learning are especially suited for this subject.

Programme


KI as a subject is conceptually distinct from traditional subjects. The KI syllabus emphasises learner-centredness, negotiated learning and spiral progression. Students are encouraged to engage with the syllabus and construct a learning experience that is meaningful for them. Students would be given opportunities to confront new information and experiences in the search for meaning. Teachers and students also work together as they explore concepts and their applications at increasing levels of difficulty.

As students are regarded as peer tutors and given opportunities to negotiate their own learning experience, KI is suitable for high-ability students with a broad interest in critical inquiry and thinking. Students, who are inquisitive and read widely, will do well in the subject. Independent learners who are capable of self-directed learning are especially suited for this subject.

Students are tested on three papers, two of which are taken on different days during the ‘A’-level examinations, with the third being submitted before the examinations.
  • Paper 1 Essay (3h) – Students are required to write two essays on the areas of learning identified in the content coverage. In Section A, students answer 1 of 2 questions on issues in Epistemology. In Section B, students answer 1 of 4 questions on issues drawn from the AOKs.
  • Paper 2 Critical Thinking (2h) – Students apply their knowledge and understanding of what they have learnt to unseen stimulus material. The compulsory question in Section A (Long Argument) requires content knowledge in one of the AOKs studied. In section B, students answer 2 out of 3 short arguments.
  • Paper 3 Independent Study (IS) – Students are required to carry out independent research and write a 2500 - 3000 word research paper on a topic of their choice. The selected topic must focus on the nature and construction of knowledge and must be suitable for an in-depth study of approximately six months' duration, typically from April to September of the examination year.

Paper 3 accounts for 40% of the ‘A’ Level Grade, while Paper 1 and 2 each account for 30%.

The syllabus may be accessed at the following link