Bloom's Taxonomy

Bloom’s revised taxonomy is a two-dimensional framework for identifying, categorizing, and scaffolding learning outcomes with a cognitive emphasis. The taxonomy table helps to organize learning outcomes by level of cognitive complexity (y-axis) and level of conceptual knowledge (x-axis).

 

Using Bloom's framework to  identify your learning outcomes will allow you to think of learning outcomes as two-fold:

 

                                            Cognitive Process   +   Knowledge

Looking back at the How to Write Learning Outcomes, you'll see this referred to as the pairing of a verb with an object. The verb, or the cognitive process, clarifies the expected action to occur in learning. The object, or the knowledge phrase, identifies the targeted information learners will attain and the meaning learners will construct.

 

 

COGNITIVE PROCESS dimension | ORDER OF THINKING

The cognitive process dimension contains six categories of thinking skills.

 

The categories are on a continuum of increasing cognitive complexity, from lower order thinking skills to higher order thinking skills. A learner who is able to achieve a higher-level thinking skill is understood to have already mastered the lower-level thinking skills. For example, a learner who is able to apply a procedure will have already attained lower-thinking skills of knowledge (recall) and comprehension (understand).

Knowledge Dimension

The knowledge dimension contains four categories on a continuum of concrete knowledge to abstract knowledge. The revised taxonomy includes a fourth category called metacognitive knowledge, which encompasses students' awareness, control, and regulation of their own cognition. The inclusion of metacognition reflects research that shows how knowledge of one's own cognition and the ability to strategically control one's own cognition plays an important role in learning (Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001).

 

These four types of knowledge help determine what to teach and how to teach it, or instructional content and instructional methods and activities.

Concrete

Knowledge

Abstract

Knowledge

Factual

basic elements, verbal and nonverbal terminology, specific details, systematic organization or concrete facts within a discipline

Conceptual

classifications, categories, principles,  theories, generalizations and the relationships between them, how they function together

Procedural

specific skills, processes,  techniques, methods of inquiry, and criteria for using certain algorithms and methods

Metacognitive

awareness of one's own learning, control and regulation of cognitive processes, self-knowledge, contextual knowledge, and conditional learning

HOW TO WRITE MEASURABLE LEARNING OUTCOMES

Using Bloom’s revised framework, you'll be able to form measurable learning outcomes using verbs that appropriately correspond with the level of knowledge. Lower-order thinking skills are typically used for concrete knowledge, while high-order thinking skills are typically used for more abstract knowledge.

Writing an effective learning outcome that is measurable involves the structuring of two parts, a verb and an object. The verb phrase describes the intended cognitive process and the noun describes the knowledge students are expected to acquire or construct (Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001).

verb

Cognitive Process

Remember, Understand, Apply, Analyze, Evaluate, and Create

object

Knowledge

Factual, Conceptual, Procedural, Metacognitive

verb identifies the observable action and cognitive process.

Articulate the standards for excelling with integrity.

Explanation of the concept, procedure, or skill.

Example

References

Anderson, L.W. and Krathwohl, D. R. (2001). A taxonomy for learning, teaching and assessing: A revision of Bloom’s

taxonomy of educational objectives. New York: Addison Wesley Longman, Inc.