As an instructional designer and educator, understanding and using Bloom’s revised taxonomy is crucial to creating significant learning experiences. An important part of the course design process is aligning the Bloom’s levels with the topic. If you’re teaching spelling, then the majority of learning will be in the lower levels. The intended outcome is to have a student know the facts: how to spell cat, or dog, or even taxonomy. At this level, you would use a very simple assessment tool.
“Take out your paper…number from 1-20…#1 – spell the word CAT.”
However, if you’re teaching a college level philosophy class, your focus is on the higher order levels. Assessing the student’s learning requires more than a simple test that is focused on recalling facts. Unlike a spelling test, a philosophy assessment might be a critique of Plato’s allegory of the Cave. Now that’s critical thinking! (and possibly a headache from thinking too much)
It’s not always easy to determine the appropriate Bloom’s level for the learning outcome. When I work with an instructor, I find it helpful to use a simple explanation of each Bloom’s level. This allows the instructor to evaluate the content and decide if the level is appropriate.
Anderson, L. W., Krathwohl, D.R., Airasian, P.W., Cruikshank, K.A., Mayer, R.E., Pintrich, P.R., Wittrock, M.C (2001). A taxonomy of learning, teaching, and assessing: A revision of Bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives. New York, NY: Longman.