Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy

A group of cognitive psychologists, curriculum theorists and instructional researchers, and testing and assessment specialists published in 2001 a revision of Bloom’s Taxonomy with the title A Taxonomy for Teaching, Learning, and Assessment. This title draws attention away from the somewhat static notion of “educational objectives” (in Bloom’s original title) and points to a more dynamic conception of classification.

The authors of the revised taxonomy underscore this dynamism, using verbs and gerunds to label their categories and subcategories (rather than the nouns of the original taxonomy). These “action words” describe the cognitive processes by which thinkers encounter and work with knowledge.

A statement of a learning objective contains a verb (an action) and an object (usually a noun).

  • The verb generally refers to [actions associated with] the intended cognitive process.
  • The object generally describes the knowledge students are expected to acquire or construct. (Anderson and Krathwohl, 2001, pp. 4–5)

The cognitive process dimension represents a continuum of increasing cognitive complexity—from remember to create. Anderson and Krathwohl identify 19 specific cognitive processes that further clarify the bounds of the six categories (Table 1).

Table 1. The Cognitive Process Dimension – categories, cognitive processes (and alternative names)

Remember

recognizing (identifying)

recalling (retrieving)

Understand

interpreting (clarifying, paraphrasing, representing, translating)

exemplifying (illustrating, instantiating)

classifying (categorizing, subsuming)

summarizing (abstracting, generalizing)

inferring (concluding, extrapolating, interpolating, predicting)

comparing (contrasting, mapping, matching)

explaining (constructing models)

Apply

executing (carrying out)

implementing (using)

Analyze

differentiating (discriminating, distinguishing, focusing, selecting)

organizing (finding, coherence, integrating, outlining, parsing, structuring)

attributing (deconstructing)

Evaluate

checking (coordinating, detecting, monitoring, testing)

critiquing (judging)

Create

generating (hypothesizing)

planning (designing)

producing (construct)

The knowledge dimension represents a range from concrete (factual) to abstract (metacognitive) (Table 2). Representation of the knowledge dimension as a number of discrete steps can be a bit misleading. For example, all procedural knowledge may not be more abstract than all conceptual knowledge. And metacognitive knowledge is a special case. In this model, “metacognitive knowledge is knowledge of [one’s own] cognition and about oneself in relation to various subject matters . . . ” (Anderson and Krathwohl, 2001, p. 44).

Table 2. The Knowledge Dimension

Factual

  • knowledge of terminology
  • knowledge of specific details and elements

Conceptual

  • knowledge of classifications and categories
  • knowledge of principles and generalizations
  • knowledge of theories, models, and structures

Procedural

  • knowledge of subject-specific skills and algorithms
  • knowledge of subject-specific techniques and methods
  • knowledge of criteria for determining when to use appropriate procedures

Metacognitive

  • strategic knowledge
  • knowledge about cognitive tasks, including appropriate contextual and conditional knowledge
  • self-knowledge

Bloom's Revised Taxonomy Model

Note: These are learning objectives – not learning activities. It may be useful to think of preceding each objective with something like, “students will be able to…:

The Knowledge Dimension

Factual

The basic elements a student must know to be acquainted with a discipline or solve problems in it.

The Knowledge Dimension

Conceptual

The interrelationships among the basic elements within a larger structure that enable them to function together.

The Knowledge Dimension

Procedural

How to do something, methods of inquiry, and criteria for using skills, algorithms, techniques, and methods.

The Knowledge Dimension

Metacognitive

How to do something, methods of inquiry, and criteria for using skills, algorithms, techniques, and methods.

The Cognitive Process Dimension

Remember

Retrieve relevant knowledge from long-term memory.

Remember + Factual

List primary and secondary colors.

Remember + Conceptual

Recognize symptoms of exhaustion.

Remember + Procedural

Recall how to perform CPR.

Remember + Metacognitive

Identify strategies for retaining information.

The Cognitive Process Dimension

Understand

Construct meaning from instructional messages, including oral, written and graphic communication.

Understand + Factual

Summarize features of a new product.

Understand + Conceptual

Classify adhesives by toxicity.

Understand + Procedural

Clarify assembly instructions.

Understand + Metacognitive

Predict one’s response to culture shock.

The Cognitive Process Dimension

Apply

Carry out or use a procedure in a given situation.

Apply + Factual

Respond to frequently asked questions.

Apply + Conceptual

Provide advice to novices.

Apply + Procedural

Carry out pH tests of water samples.

Apply + Metacognitive

Use techniques that match one's strengths.

The Cognitive Process Dimension

Analyze

Carry out or use a procedure in a given situation.

Analyze + Factual

Select the most complete list of activities.

Analyze + Conceptual

Differentiate high and low culture.

Analyze + Procedural

Integrate compliance with regulations.

Analyze + Metacognitive

Deconstruct one's biases.

The Cognitive Process Dimension

Evaluate

Make judgments based on criteria and standards.

Evaluate + Factual

Select the most complete list of activities.

Evaluate + Conceptual

Determine relevance of results.

Evaluate + Procedural

Judge efficiency of sampling techniques.

Evaluate + Metacognitive

Reflect on one's progress.

The Cognitive Process Dimension

Create

Put elements together to form a coherent whole; reorganize into a new pattern or structure.

Create + Factual

Generate a log of daily activities.

Create + Conceptual

Assemble a team of experts.

Create + Procedural

Design efficient project workflow.

Create + Metacognitive

Create a learning portfolio.

Recommended Resources

Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy by Andrew Churches a thorough orientation to the revised taxonomy; practical recommendations for a wide variety of ways mapping the taxonomy to the uses of current online technologies; and associated rubrics

Bloom et al.’s Taxonomy of the Cognitive Domain (Dr. William G. Huitt, Valdosta State University)

The Best Resources For Helping Teachers Use Bloom’s Taxonomy In The Classroom (Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…)

Volume Information. (2002). Theory Into Practice, 41(4), 265-267. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1477402

*Anderson, L.W. (Ed.), Krathwohl, D.R. (Ed.), Airasian, P.W., Cruikshank, K.A., Mayer, R.E., Pintrich, P.R., Raths, J., & Wittrock, M.C. (2001). A taxonomy for learning, teaching, and assessing: A revision of Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives (Complete edition). New York: Longman.