Bloom’s Taxonomy

For years, Bloom's Taxonomy has been near the top of the list of college teaching advice. Recently, I wrote another article on this subject.
Note: Before you spend more than $100 on a used copy of Bloom's original book, I encourage you to purchase Steven Banks's book: If you haven't read my first article yet, it was Bloom's Taxonomy for College Instructors.  I also encourage you to check out Bloom's Taxonomy Basics.

Questions That Assess Higher Level Learning

Let me expand on the teaching advice I provided in the other articles with some examples.  Consider how you might assess your students knowledge of Aristotelian logic at each of the six levels of Bloom's Taxonomy.  As you may know, I am not a philosophy instructor, but here is my attempt at this assignment:

Level 1 - Knowledge

What were Aristotle’s three categories of argumentative writing? a. Ethos, Logos and Pathos b. Primary, Secondary and Tertiary c. Moral, Social and Legal d. Juvenile, Adolescent and Adult

Level 2 - Comprehension

Explain Aristotle’s three categories of argumentative writing.
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Level 3 - Application

Write a one paragraph persuasive argument for legalizing marijuana using the technique Aristotle labeled as Pathos.

Level 4- Analysis

Classify the following three statements (not shown here) about tobacco use as either Credible, Emotional or Logical and explain why.

Level 5 - Synthesis

Write a short article that encourages birth control for parents with more than two children.  Use one type of reasoning, either Ethos, Pathos or Logos, and explain why you chose that approach.

Level 6- Evaluation

Critique the following two arguments about gun control.  Explain the approach taken by each author in terms of Aristotelian logic.  Identify which argument is more persuasive and why you that is. I hope you find these examples to be helpful college teaching advice.  However, if you found my examples sufficient reason to ban me from every philosophy classroom feel free to say so.  No, better yet.  Construct an argument for banning me from Philosophy 101 at your college, and explain the type of reasoning you applied.
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Thank you!!!

© 2010 Paul A. Hummel, Ed.D.

Revised January 28, 2014


About Dr. Paul A. Hummel, Ed.D.

My name is Paul Hummel, and I often introduce myself to others as a recovering engineer. If you are familiar with the Dilbert cartoons, let me simply say that I lived all of that. I started my college saga at Illinois Institute of Technology. Eventually, I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Engineering Management. I worked for many years in industry, and during this time I did some college adjunct teaching. During my career I held several managerial positions in industry, the last as Director of Technology of a division of a Fortune 500 corporation. Then, in 1996, with minimal planning or forethought, I found myself working as a manufacturing consultant on behalf of Elgin Community College (ECC). My career in higher education began to take shape. I fell in love with ECC and with the mission of community colleges in general. I worked fulltime and occasionally taught college courses for my institution and two other colleges. After a couple years I set a goal to move over to the “credit side of the college” and eventually become a college administrator. In 2006, having earned my doctorate in education, I achieved that goal. I was hired by Waubonsee Community College as Dean for Technology, Mathematics and Physical Sciences. I have had the great fortune of working at two excellent colleges. The insights I want to share are drawn from the various college positions I have held. At ECC, in addition to my consulting role, I coordinated non-credit professional development training programs for three years and spent four years advising students in the TRiO Student Support Services program. That position helped me understand college education from the perspective of today’s college students. After seven years at Waubonsee, I retired April 30, 2013. I now devote my knowledge and skills to upgrading and expanding the websites I created beginning with Adjunct Assistance. I have three other websites: College Teaching Tips, Keys for College Success and Lighthouse for Learning. A lot of work lies ahead for me in terms of upgrading and expanding each of these websites, but I could not be more excited about fulfilling the vision I have for helping college instructors and their students succeed.

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