bloom's taxonomy

Bloom’s Taxonomy in the EFL Classroom

Introduction of Bloom’s Taxonomy

The original taxonomy was first described in 1956 by Benjamin Bloom, an educational psychologist at the University of Chicago in the book Taxonomy of Educational Objectives with his coauthors Max Englehart, Edward Furst, Walter Hill, and David Krathwohl.   

Bloom’s Taxonomy is a classification of the different outcomes and skills that educators set for their students (learning outcomes).

Since its publication, the book has been translated into over twenty languages and is currently utilized for instructional design all over the world.

Adapted from, Charlotte Ruhl at SimplyPsychology:

Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy

A group of academics led by Bloom’s colleague, David Krathwohl, and one of Bloom’s students, Lorin Anderson, revised the taxonomy in 2001 to provide learners with clearer instructional goals.

Adapted from, Patricia Armstrong at Vanderbilt University Center for Teaching.:

Nouns are substituted by action verbs in the new variation. In addition, the taxonomy’s two highest levels are switched. The Illustration of the difference between the Original Bloom’s taxonomy and the Revised Bloom’s taxonomy could be seen below:

Adapted from, Ekramul Hoque at Educare Centre:


It refers to the ability to recall information, in other words, this stage of learning is about memorizing basic facts, dates, events, persons, places, concepts and patterns. Students, for example, can memorize and explain vocabulary words learned in class.

The associated cognitive processes are:

  • Recognizing, locating knowledge in long-term memory related to presented material (e.g., recognizing the dates of important historical events).
  • Recalling, retrieving knowledge from long-term memory (e.g., recalling the dates of important historical events).


It manifests when students are able to explain ideas or concepts. For instance, they can clarify a metaphor or they can answer questions based on a text they have read.

The processes associated with understanding are:

  • Interpreting, changing from one form of representation to another. (e.g., transforming numerical information into verbal)
  • Exemplifying, finding a specific illustration of a concept or principle. (e.g., giving several examples of past activity)
  • Classifying, determining a category of something. (e.g., classifying the genre of text)
  • Summarizing, retrieving a general theme of significant points (e.g., writing a short summary of a story).
  • Inferring, drawing a logical conclusion from given information. (e.g., formulating grammatical principles of a foreign language from the presented examples)
  • Comparing, finding correspondences between two ideas or objects (e.g., comparing the differences and similarities between dog and cat).
  • Explaining, constructing a cause-and-effect model of a system (e.g., explaining the causes of the French Revolution)


The students can use facts or concepts in new or different contexts and particular situations. For example, the students can talk about a variety of situations using a grammar tense they have been taught.

The processes of cognition corresponding to this stage are:

  • Executing, applying a procedure to a familiar task (e.g., calculating the root of a number).
  • Implementing, applying a procedure to an unfamiliar task (e.g., using Newton’s Second Law in a new situation)


The students are able to break down information into separate parts, then examine and create connections between these different parts. For instance, learners can compare and contrast the characteristics of two objects.

The three particular processes associated with this stage are:

  • Differentiating, distinguishing important from unimportant parts of presented material (e.g., distinguishing between relevant and irrelevant numbers in a mathematical word problem).
  • Organizing, identifying how elements fit or function within a structure (e.g., finding the hypothesis, method, data, and conclusion in a research report).
  • Attributing, determining a point of view, bias, values, or intent underlying presented material. An example would be to identify the author’s point of view of an essay.


It refers to the ability to form and express one’s opinion. The learners are expected to use their knowledge and skills to appraise a situation, justify their stand or criticize others’ opinions.  One way students do this is by supporting and defending their views during a class discussion.

Evaluating is divided into checking and critiquing.

  • Checking, detecting inconsistencies or fallacies in a process or product. (e.g.,  determining if his/her friend’s answer about the school rules based on the school condition)
  • Critiquing, finding inconsistencies between a product and external criteria. (e,g., judging which of two methods is the best for solving a problem)


It is the most complex stage of the learning process and the highest level of the revised Bloom’s Taxonomy, wherein students can show proof of their learning by producing something new or original. Students at this stage, for instance, can rewrite a story in another setting or make a presentation out of the vocabulary, ideas, and concepts they’ve learned.

The three associated cognitive processes are:

  • Generating, coming up with alternative hypotheses based on criteria. (e.g., devising multiple solutions for a social problem.
  • Planning, coming up with a procedure for completing a task (e.g., preparing an outline of an article).
  • Producing, inventing a product (e.g., writing a short story that takes place during the Indonesian battle to fight for independence).

Bloom’s Taxonomy Verbs

When talking about Bloom’s taxonomy, action verbs associated with the categories and cognitive processes are often mentioned. Instructors use these verbs to describe activities required for achieving educational objectives corresponding to each level.

Table of Bloom’s taxonomy (remember) verbs

Adapted from Anderson and Krathwohl (2001)

Table of Bloom’s taxonomy (understand) verbs

Adapted from Anderson and Krathwohl (2001)

Table of Bloom’s taxonomy (apply) verbs

Adapted from Anderson and Krathwohl (2001)

Table of Bloom’s taxonomy (analyze) verbs

Adapted from Anderson and Krathwohl (2001)

Table of Bloom’s taxonomy (evaluate) verbs

Adapted from Anderson and Krathwohl (2001)

Table of Bloom’s taxonomy (create) verbs

Adapted from Anderson and Krathwohl (2001)

References & Recommended Reading

Tenry Colle
Tenry Colle

Hi! My name is A. Tenry Lawangen Aspat Colle. I am a motivated and resourceful English educator. In addition, as the owner of @rymari.translation17 has shaped me to be a punctual and dependable translator of Indonesian to English and vice versa.

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