What is Bloom’s Taxonomy and why do teachers need to learn it?

Teaching is a multi-dimensional and complex field. Moreover, if one wants to step beyond mere academic education and work on the overall development of the child, then there are several different considerations. Those looking for teaching jobs abroad should be able to plan the teaching courses despite these constraints, and Bloom’s Taxonomy is just the kind of tool that can help them do that.

What is Bloom’s Taxonomy?

Bloom’s Taxonomy is a hierarchical model first developed by commits that was chaired by Benjamin Bloom in 1956 and revised in 2001. It can be used for developing effective and holistic learning goals as it gives different levels into which learning objectives can be classified, and the complexity of the goal increases with each level.

Levels of Cognitive-based learning in Bloom’s Taxonomy

The cognitive model of Bloom’s hierarchy is the original and the most important level when it comes to dealing with concepts. The model is based on the five different activities of human cognition, and these involve the following:

  • Level 1 – Remembering 

The first and the most level of knowledge cognition is mere remembering. At this step, some facts or bits of information that they were taught. The words like ‘recall,’ ‘remember.’ ‘identify ‘, ‘tell,’ etc. should be used to invite students to remember the information.

For example, students may be asked to remember the important dates of world history.

  • Level 2 – Understanding

The next level in Bloom’s hierarchy is understanding the concept. The learning objectives at this level will seek to ensure that the students have a proper understanding of concepts. To test and ensure that the student has achieved this level, one must ask them to explain concepts using words like ‘explain.’ ‘Describe,’ ‘Illustrate,’ etc. It is important that one should not only merely repeat the words and definitions given by the teacher but should have a clear understanding of the concept. To ensure this, they should be challenged to explain things in their own words.

For example – students may be asked to explain the process of boiling in their own words.

  • Level 3 – Application

It is important to understand that it is not enough that a student should understand a concept; they should also be able to apply their understanding to solve problems. ‘Examine,’ ‘Interpret,’ etc. are some of the verbs that can be used to test students’ abilities to apply concepts.

For example – students may be asked to interpret a graph showing breathing rate during various activities.

  • Level 4 – Analysis

At this level, the information is further analysed for a better understanding of its parts and how it may relate to other concepts learned. ‘Differentiate,’ ‘Organise,’ and ‘Separate’ are some of the keywords used for testing whether a student has achieved this level.

For example – students may be asked to differentiate between boiling and evaporation.

  • Level 5 – Evaluate

At this level, the student is able to make judgments on real-world situations and cases based on what they have learned so far. ‘Convince.’ ‘Criticise,’ ‘Defend,’ ‘Decide,’ etc. are some of the things a student can be asked to do in appropriate cases to check whether they have achieved this level of understanding.

For example – Students may be given a problem where a hypothetical student solved a question the wrong way and then asked to convince this hypothetical student that they are in error.

  • Level 6 – Creating

The last and the most challenging level is where the students are expected to be able to use their learning and use it with other lessons to create something new and meaningful. ‘Create,’ ‘Plan, ‘Produce,’ etc. are some of the words that can be used to formulate the questions for evaluating students at this level.

For example – a student might be asked to create a lab project that shows which objects are good conductors of electricity.

It must be noted that the above levels are as per the revised Bloom’s taxonomy, which improves upon the original version.

Why does a teacher need to learn about it?

All teaching degree courses teach about Bloom’s taxonomy because of several benefits it offers to teachers. Some of the most important of these objectives include the following:

  • It helps a teacher ensure that the student has a holistic understanding of concepts. It is not enough to just ‘know’ or even just ‘understand’ the concept; such learning would be too abstract and limited. It is equally important that students should be able to apply it to the real world, analyse it as well as use the knowledge for creative purposes.
  • It can help teachers by providing a framework to set their learning objectives. Thus, teachers don’t have to start from scratch.
  • Bloom’s taxonomy also encourages teachers to ask questions that are different from the traditional, mere theoretical approach.
  • It helps teachers in testing a student’s learning of concepts in a holistic way. There are certain keywords that can be used to formulate the questions that test the students for various levels of Bloom’s taxonomy.
  • It helps improve all the cognitive abilities of the students – instead of just one or two, which might happen if the teacher was to teach in an unorganised manner.

How to Bloom’s taxonomy for the maximum benefit? 

Ideally, a teacher should create a course plan such that a student should have a chance to be able to achieve all the six levels for each of their lessons. Various kinds of examples, explanations, visual cues, questions, activities, projects, etc., could be added to the course to maximise the learning at each of the above levels. The educational courses should be set to ensure this by providing questions asked and activities for successive levels and increasing levels of complexity. Once a teaching schedule has been prepared to help the students reach various levels of the above model, one should stick with it. 

The Bottom Line

One can easily wrap up the above discussion by concluding that Bloom’s taxonomy is a great tool in the hands of teachers and can help them teach in an organised, systematic, and holistic manner.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button