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Blooms Taxonomy of Educational Objectives

Bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives is a framework for categorizing learning targets according to domain and level of complexity. The taxonomy was developed by the American educational psychologist Benjamin Bloom and various colleagues of his. They began work in the late 1940s on a system for classifying the level of expertise necessary to achieve specific measurable learning outcomes. Bloom et al. completed work on the first domain, the cognitive domain, in the mid-1950s. In the years that followed, specialists developed classifications for two further domains: affective and psycho-motor.

Blooms Taxonomy of Educational Objectives

Blooms Taxonomy

The taxonomy is based on the principle that what educators intend for students to learn can be organized hierarchically from less to more complex. Levels within the hierarchy are presumed to be successive, so that students must master a given level before they can proceed to the next, more complex level.

For instance, the cognitive domain includes the levels of:

  1. Knowledge
  2. Comprehension
  3. Application
  4. Analysis
  5. Synthesis
  6. Evaluation

When various levels or outcomes of learning are involved, Bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives may be used to develop instructional goals, to design and present lectures, and to evaluate student performance. Unless such classification is performed, there is a risk that the educator will focus on one level of learning while neglecting others. For instance, an exam might unintentionally overemphasize factual knowledge even though the teacher sought to challenge students to demonstrate their abilities to analyze and synthesize.

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