How to Use Bloom’s Taxonomy in Assessment

Incorporating Bloom’s Taxonomy in assessment design is a strategic approach to ensure that assessments are well-rounded and cover the full spectrum of cognitive skills. Educators can comprehensively evaluate students’ understanding and abilities by creating questions and tasks corresponding to each taxonomy level. Not only does this method promote more accurate assessment results, but it also helps to differentiate instruction and identify the most effective teaching strategies for diverse learning styles.

For a complete overview of Bloom’s Taxonomy, read the article Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Bloom’s Taxonomy is a useful tool to structure assessment

Implementing Bloom’s Taxonomy in Assessment

Setting Learning Objectives

To implement Bloom’s Taxonomy in assessment, you’ll first need to start by setting clear learning objectives for your students. According to University of Arkansas, these objectives should be based on the different levels of understanding and skills within Bloom’s Taxonomy, guiding your teaching and assessment methods.

By categorising your learning objectives into the six levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy, you can ensure that your students are given the opportunity to develop a well-rounded understanding of the subject matter.

Designing Assessment Activities

With clear learning objectives, you can now focus on designing assessment activities that align with each level of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Incorporate a mix of assessment methods, which can cater to the different levels of learning objectives, including:

  • Multiple-choice questions.
  • Case studies and scenario-based tasks.
  • Research assignments and projects.

Creating Assessment Rubrics

Finally, to further utilise Bloom’s Taxonomy for assessment, create assessment rubrics that clearly outline the expectations for each level within the taxonomy. This ensures you and your students know the performance indicators for each assessment activity.

A well-designed assessment rubric should include the following:

  1. Criteria: Define the key elements that comprise each Bloom’s Taxonomy level.
  2. Descriptors: Describe what is required at each level of performance within the assessment activity.
  3. Scoring: Assign a numerical value or range for each performance descriptor, facilitating consistent and objective grading.

By aligning your assessment rubrics with Bloom’s Taxonomy, you can provide students with clear expectations and feedback, ultimately supporting a more effective learning experience.

Aligning Assessments with Curriculum Goals

When designing assessments, aligning them with curriculum goals by referring to Bloom’s Taxonomy is crucial. Aligning assessments with curriculum goals ensures that the evaluation accurately measures the intended outcomes and encourages higher-order thinking in students. This alignment process involves the following steps:

  1. Identify the intended learning outcomes by specifying the knowledge and skills students should acquire. These outcomes should be defined using relevant verbs from Bloom’s Taxonomy, such as “analyse,” “evaluate,” or “create”.
  2. Develop assessment tasks that appropriately measure the specified learning outcomes. Ensure that the tasks target the corresponding levels of cognitive skills in Bloom’s Taxonomy.
  3. Design instructional strategies that facilitate higher-level thinking and help students achieve learning outcomes. The strategy should connect the learning objectives to the assessment tasks and ensure that students are well prepared for the evaluation process.

Consider the following examples of assessment tasks and their corresponding levels of cognitive skills in Bloom’s Taxonomy:

LevelExamples of verbsAssessment tasks
RememberingRecall, recognize, identifyFill-in-the-blank, matching, labeling
UnderstandingExplain, describe, summariseExplanations, paraphrasing, summarising
ApplyingApply, solve, demonstrateProblem-solving, simulations, case studies
AnalyzingAnalyze, compare, differentiateCompare and contrast, debates, investigations
EvaluatingEvaluate, critique, assessCritiques, self-assessment, peer reviews
CreatingCreate, design, developDesign projects, proposals, research projects
Assessment tasks and Bloom’s Taxonomy

Aligning assessments with curriculum goals using Bloom’s Taxonomy ensures accurate measurement of learning outcomes and challenges students to think critically and develop essential problem-solving skills.

Incorporating Bloom’s Taxonomy into Various Assessment Formats

Multiple-Choice Questions

Using Bloom’s Taxonomy in multiple-choice questions involves creating questions targeting different cognitive levels. To achieve this, you can focus on various verbs associated with each level of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Here are some examples:

  • Remember: Identify, List, Define
  • Understand: Describe, Explain, Discuss
  • Apply: Solve, Demonstrate, Use
  • Analyse: Compare, Contrast, Analyse
  • Evaluate: Judge, Critique, Appraise
  • Create: Design, Construct, Synthesise

Design your multiple-choice questions to address these cognitive levels to ensure a comprehensive assessment of students’ understanding.

Essay Questions

When incorporating Bloom’s Taxonomy into essay questions, aim to encourage students to engage with higher-order thinking skills. To do this, prompt them to analyse, evaluate, and create within the essay format. Some example essay questions include:

LevelExample Question
AnalyseCompare and contrast the impact of globalisation on two different economies.
EvaluateAssess the effectiveness of various leadership styles in managing diverse teams.
CreateDesign a sustainable urban development plan considering environmental, social, and economic aspects.
Sample essay questions using Bloom’s Taxonomy

These questions promote critical thinking and require students to demonstrate a deep understanding of the subject matter.

Project-Based Assessments

Project-based assessments offer opportunities for students to demonstrate their mastery of various cognitive levels within Bloom’s Taxonomy. To incorporate the taxonomy into your project-based assessments, consider structuring your project with tasks addressing each cognitive level. For example:

  1. Remember: Require students to recall specific facts or concepts.
  2. Understand: Ask students to explain a related theory or principle.
  3. Apply: Instruct students to solve a real-world problem using their knowledge.
  4. Analyse: Have students evaluate and organise information to identify patterns or relationships.
  5. Evaluate: Ask students to justify their choices or decisions within the project.
  6. Create: Require students to design, construct, or develop a unique artefact that demonstrates their learning.

By sequencing these tasks, your project-based assessment will effectively incorporate Bloom’s Taxonomy and encourage students to engage with various cognitive levels throughout their work.

Did you find this article interesting? If yes, how about reading about using question stems with Bloom’s Taxonomy.

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