Bloom’s Taxonomy and Course Design


What is Bloom’s Taxonomy?

In their original work, Bloom and a committee of educators known three domains of learning: psychological feature (mental), emotional (emotional), and content (physical). However, once the majority think about Bloom’s Taxonomy, they suppose solely of the psychological feature domain.

This article is sponsored by Online Whiteboard for Education | Dojoit.

The psychological feature domain is split into six classes, every representing a psychological feature ability level. Every class is related to a group of verbs, or psychological feature processes, that describe what learners ought to be capable of doing:

  • Knowledge: acknowledge, recall, list, name, memorize, define, locate, identify.
  • Comprehension: interpret, illustrate, summarize, explain, match, paraphrase.
  • Application: apply, choose, organize, draw, generalize.
  • Analysis: analyze, differentiate, classify, categorize, distinguish.
  • Synthesis: produce, plan, produce, construct.
  • Evaluation: measure, judge, criticize, compare, appraise. 

Bloom’s Taxonomy with examples. 

First, we will receive good knowledge sharing from Anthony Marini of Carleton University what he thinks Bloom’s technology is to most people in the education industry.


We all develop an understanding of the history of Bloom’s taxonomy is. His understanding is that Bloom and his associates went back in the late 50s when in the classrooms across the United States looking at what does happen in classrooms in terms of the level of teaching and the level of assessment.

Anthony Marini thinks one of the things they walked away with is the belief that there was an overwhelming amount of time and effort focused on what amounted to knowledge, factual teaching, and assessment. So teachers taught facts, and students essentially gave those facts back to the teacher.

The whole idea was to alert teachers and students to the possibility of deeper forms of learning. So the Bloom’s taxonomy was developed to demonstrate to teachers the various levels of cognitive engagement a learner could have.

Bloom’s Taxonomy New Knowledge Share.

Secondly, we will have Bloom’s taxonomy new knowledge share by Samah Sabra of Carleton University.

One of the things that are particularly useful about Bloom’s taxonomy is not just that you know there’s this idea that there are these three different domains of learning.

  • You’ve got that a cognitive domain which is really about intellectual skills and capabilities.
  • There’s the psychomotor domain which is really about physical kinds of skills. Often the example that’s given is driving in teaching and learning settings in, you know, educational institutions. Lab work is a great place where students develop psychomotor skills.
  • The affective domain is all about the values and attitudes that you want people to develop.

Within each of those, there are these kinds of levels, or you know, a hierarchy. All the levels are really important.

What’s useful about that is figuring out that certain things build on each other. So you know, students have to remember a certain terminology before they can understand it. They need to understand it before they can apply it. So this is how the levels kind of build on each other.

Within each of these levels, you have these action words that indicate to students the kinds of skills they’re developing in the kinds of actions they have to take. So in that way, it’s not just a useful way of communicating with students. It’s also a really useful way to design your assessments and the kinds of teaching and learning activities you’re doing.

Bloom’s Taxonomy cognitive and others 

In the third place, we shall move on to Andrew Barrett of Carleton University.

He says most of the time in higher education, it’s easy to focus on the cognitive domain. Still, it’s surprising how many courses or learning experiences involve some of the other domains. That’s kind of the first area that Bloom’s taxonomy can be helpful to look at, just to maybe think about this of the learning outcomes you want to consider for your course.

Bloom’s Taxonomy and Course Design.

From Brock University, Maureen Connolly describes that Bloom’s Taxonomy is huge in whole-person learning.

You’ve got the perceptual-motor, or psychomotor, or behavioral, cognitive, affective.

We’ve got varying levels of grasp inside all of those. She thinks a well-designed course takes up all of those dimensions of the learner. The cognitive dimension, the doing or the active behavioral dimension, and the affective dimension; not necessarily sure that we can assess all those dimensions or need to assess all those dimensions all the time. But certainly, they need to be a part of learning. It’s going to be deep learning as opposed to sort of just collisions with the subject matter.

How she organizes her course involves the students doing things in between posts or encounters with her that are concrete doing, not just thinking about doing but doing things. So she likes to build in all three. She thinks it makes for a multimodal learner. Certainly, it gets visual auditory kinesthetic tactile.

Bloom’s Taxonomy of learning. 

Joy Mighty from Carleton University says that in terms of how we associate or relate Bloom’s taxonomy of learning to an outcomes-based program would be that we would ensure that we are making clear what level of competence, what level of thinking our learning outcomes are supposed to be helping our students to demonstrate.

She would make sure that she has appropriate learning outcomes for every level of that taxonomy and appropriate outcomes and the other aspects of the course design. She would have to make sure that she has the right kinds of assessments for every level, the right kinds of learning activities for every level.

Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Natasha Kenny of the University of Guelph states that Bloom’s taxonomy provides that fundamental link of alignment between the outcomes we expect and how we are assessing something.

Course Design with Bloom’s Taxonomy.

When from the University of Waterloo, Jane Holbrook is talking to instructors, she’d show them Bloom’s taxonomy or Fink’s hierarchy, mainly to give them some words to use.

Often when they’re writing a learning objective for the course or thinking about a learning outcome for their students for a course, they’ll very much want to think about or talk about what the students need to understand or know. Then she thinks, well how do you know that they know this!

They need access to the words in Bloom’s taxonomy because it can help them identify how they will assess those objectives or learning outcomes.

Having words like identify or articulate or discuss or list or make connections between those things are a little bit easier to make that connection to “all right I have this particular outcome, this is how I’m expressing it now, how am I going to assess it.”

Course Design and Bloom’s Taxonomy. 

Steve Joordens from the University of Toronto thinks Bloom’s taxonomy is very good in creating multiple-choice questions and thinking about how you can ask questions that tap knowledge or content at a much deeper level.

There’s a lot of verbs in Bloom’s taxonomy too. Sometimes he sees people kind of stop at the multiple-choice, and you know what he likes about learning outcomes is that they specify a lot of the skills he wants his students to learn skills over and above knowledge.

Relation of Course Design with Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Andrew Barrett, Carleton University, says that Bloom’s taxonomy is a hierarchy, and so it has things at the bottom, it has things at the top, and it doesn’t mean that one is more important than the other.

It just means that for you to do some of the things at the top level like create or value or these sorts of things, you must have these prerequisite skills.

The only way that you can get them is by marching your way up the hierarchy.

The Relationship Between Bloom’s Taxonomy and Course Design.

Giulia Forsythe of Brock Univesity mentions that often you know you’ll see the Bloom’s Triangle. People are like, “Oh! We have to be working up at the top of the triangle,” but they’re all connected, so it’s really important to not just stay obviously at the lower level, but you want to be able to see how they connect across the spectrum.

So she’s trying to incorporate that into many of the assessments. Sometimes she will have just a multiple-choice test that hopefully makes sure that they’re reading the material and answering the questions.

She thinks that has its place, but she also wants to make sure that she has other checking measures to understand and how the students can apply it to new contexts.