Blooms taxonomy

In 1956, Benjamin Bloom and a committee of educators classified six major categories that comprised a framework of learning and assessment that is widely referred to as Bloom’s taxonomy.

The Taxonomy refers to the classification of the different objectives that served not only as a measurement tool but also as learning objectives. A revision of Bloom’s Taxonomy by Andrerson and Krathwol in their 2001 study: A Taxonomy for Learning, Teaching and Assessing: A Revision of Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives sets out the differences of this new revised Taxonomy.

Original versus Revised

The framework of Taxonomy moves from noun to verb forms and called ‘cognitive processes’.

In the original Taxonomy both noun and verb were embedded within the Knowledge category:

in the revised Taxonomy by allowing these two aspects, the noun and verb, to form separate dimensions, the noun providing the basis for the knowledge dimension and the verb forming the basis for the Cognitive Process dimension. (Krathwohl, 213)

Subcategories are also reorganised and replaced with verbs. A new subcategory was added to the Knowledge dimension, Metacognitive Knowledge: knowledge of cognition as well as awareness and knowledge of one’s metacognitive activity.

The list below outlines category changes:

Knowledge -> Remember

Comprehension -> Understand

Application -> Apply

Analysis -> Analyse

Synthesis -> Evaluate

Evaluation -> Create

Implications for 21st century educators

Metacognitive knowledge becomes significant as it teaches students the importance of their metacognitive activity and this helps them to adapt their critical thinking to the task. Using the revised Taxonomy educators can create learning objectives and assessments that provide clarity on the curriculum and define in clear active terms what the learner will do. Implications for educators’ include:

  • Determine the instructional and learning activities to achieve objectives
  • Create assessment that help learners achieve learning objectives
  • Improve the quality of curriculum on where there may be knowledge gaps
  • Improve delivery of instruction