Raffles Institution

Knowledge and Inquiry


    The Knowledge & Inquiry Unit is part of the larger KS1 Department. Through Knowledge & Inquiry, we aim to impart to our students an awareness of what knowledge is, how it is constructed and its role in society. Students will acquire an understanding of rudimentary epistemological issues and explore the nature and construction of knowledge in diverse fields such as science, aesthetics and ethics.  Critical thinking is a core skill in KI, and students will be familiarised with introductory logic.  The evaluation of set arguments and the application of logical, critical reasoning to their own arguments and in essays will be a constant feature of KI classes.  Through KI, students will be better equipped to evaluate arguments critically, and to recognise the limitations and validity of knowledge claims.


    Knowledge and Inquiry focuses on the nature of knowledge and its construction in areas such as the sciences, the social sciences, mathematics and the aesthetics. At Year 5, we also offer a course on epistemology for all KI students so that they possess a firm foundation which they can use to discuss the nature and construction of knowledge in all subject areas.

    Key features of the programme include:

    ⋅ A placement test, taken by all students who are interested in offering KI, so that we can best match students with the requisite aptitudes with the rigorous demands of our programme

    ⋅ Enrichment lectures on a variety of topics and issues

    ⋅ Tutorials that equip students with critical thinking skills, under the guidance of dedicated tutors

    ⋅ A mini-research essay programme, where tutors provide step-by-step guidance to prepare students to embark on their Independent Study