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Bloom's Taxonomy of Learning Domains

Updated January 12, 2015. Created June 5, 1999.

Donald Clark

Since the work was produced by higher education, the words tend to be a little bigger than we normally use. Domains
may be thought of as categories. Instructional designers, trainers, and educators often refer to these three categories as
KSA (Knowledge [cognitive], Skills [psychomotor], and Attitudes [affective]). This taxonomy of learning behaviors may be
thought of as “the goals of the learning process.” That is, after a learning episode, the learner should have acquired a
new skill, knowledge, and/or attitude.

Domains Of Learning
Sarah Mae Sincero

This categorization is best explained by the Taxonomy of Learning Domains formulated by a group of
researchers led by Benjamin Bloom in 1956.

Emerging Theories of Learning and the Role of Technology

By Shannon Doak

In fact, core subject knowledge is no longer enough, students need higher-level learning skills. The
demands of the 21st century require young adults to be able to “use their knowledge and skills—by
thinking critically, applying knowledge to new situations, analyzing information, comprehending new ideas,
communicating, collaborating, solving problems, making decisions” (Honey, et al, 2003, p. 9).

Honey, M., Mandinach, E., & McMillan, K. C. (2003). A retrospective on twenty years of education
technology policy. Education Development Center, Center for Children and Technology, U.S. Department
of Education, Office of Educational Technology.

Affective mechanisms linking Internet use to learning performance in high school students: A
moderated mediation study
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this study hypothesizes that academic self-efficacy acts as a mediator for Internet use and academic performance. Based
on Social cognitive theory, we argue that student academic performance will be mediated by academic self-efficacy with
respect to Internet use. Two kinds of Internet use, general and professional, are considered to be antecedents of
academic self-efficacy. Survey data from 212 twelfth-grade vocational high school students in Taiwan indicate that
general Internet use has an indirect positive effect on student academic performance, which is also mediated through
academic self-efficacy. In contrast, general Internet use has no significant direct impact on students learning
performance. This study also shows that Internet anxiety moderates the relationship between academic self-efficacy
and learning performance. In students with low Internet anxiety, the relationship is moderated, which results in
enhanced learning performance.

Interactive Education:
Impact of the Internet on Learning & Teaching
Professor Hossein Arsham

It is a common misperception that delivering courses online diminishes the personal connection between students and
teacher. On the contrary, online learning tools present a new universe of possibilities for creating an individualized,
highly effective environment that enhances and personalizes the learning experience.

Chapter 6: Learning designs for learning literacies

Applications of the Taxonomies of Learning Objectives (Part 1)

Jan 4, 2008
Mike Touchstone
These hierarchies exist within the three established domains of learning objectives: the cognitive, the
affective and the psychomotor. The cognitive domain refers to knowledge; the “what” we need to learn.
The affective domain refers to emotion and attitude; the “why” we need to learn and how we feel about it.
The psychomotor domain refers to the hands-on skills; the “how” we do the things we do. The hierarchies
in each domain, again, begin with simple functions and progress to more complex ones.

By tracking the domain and level of the objectives a student successfully meets, we can determine that
student’s level of function in each of the domains. We can also use objectives to create exams that confirm
the student’s level of function.
Internet Use and Cognitive Development: a theoretical framework

GENEVIEVE JOHNSON Grant MacEwan College, Canada

All stages of cognitive processing are facilitated by meta-cognition, which includes learning strategies and monitoring
the effectiveness of processes (Solso et al, 2005). According to the IP perspective, as children develop, they become
more able to focus attention on relevant stimuli, they have greater capacity to remember (i.e. store information), they
recognise and interpret more stimuli due to increased knowledge base (i.e. stored information), and metacognition
becomes more sophisticated, which improves the efficiency of all aspects of cognitive processing. This results in
individuals who are progressively more able to function effectively in their environment (Klahr & MacWhinney, 1998).

In formulating a theoretical framework appropriate for organising the effects of media on cognitive development, media
is categorised in terms of varying cognitive demands which translate into cognitively distinct influences. The text in
books is non-interactive and requires visual and language processing. Recorded music is non-interactive and requires
auditory processing. Television is largely non-interactive and requires visual and auditory processing. The Internet is
interactive, requiring the processing of visual input (i.e. text and images on a computer screen) that leads to manual
output as devices (e.g. keyboard, mouse, response pad, controller) are manipulated

All trends indicate that the number of children accessing the Internet as well as the amount of time spent online is
steadily increasing (Statistics Canada, 2004). Given such pervasive and extensive use in children and youth, from a
cognitive-developmental perspective, the Internet is a cultural tool that influences cognitive processes and an
environmental stimulus that contributes to the formation of specific cognitive architecture.

Like books and magazines, web sites contain text and images that require interpretation. Although there are differences
in the reading processes involved in decoding printed text and digital text, ‘there are also many similarities, with
meaning-making being central to the process’ (Marsh & Thompson, 2001, p. 269). Unlike print material, web sites are, to
varying degrees, interactive. Children make choices about accessing site features and links. ‘Electronic texts are
malleable and fluid; they are not firm and fixed in the manner of printed books and magazines’ (Desmond, 2001, p. 42).
In this regard, visiting web sites makes cognitive demands beyond those associated with simply decoding text.
Metacognitive processes such as planning, search strategies, and evaluation of information are exercised when
accessing web sites (Tarpley, 2001).

‘About 72 percent of Internet users ages 5-17 (or 42 percent of all youth in this age range) use the Internet to complete
school assignments’ (National Center for Educational Statistics, 2003, pp. vi-vii). Approximately 90% of parents claim
‘that the computer has had a positive impact on their child’s learning ability, while 79% say that it has improved their
child’s homework quality’ (Canadian Council on Social Development, 2001, p. 4).

Solso, R.L., MacLin, M.K. & MacLin, O.H. (2005) Cognitive Psychology, 7th edn. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Statistics Canada
(2004, July) Household Internet Use Survey.

Klahr, D. & MacWhinney, B. (1998) Information Processing, in D. Kuhn & R.S. Siegler (Eds) Handbook of Child Psychology:
Vol. 2. Cognition, Perception, and Language, 5th edn, pp. 631-678. New York: John Wiley.

Desmond, R. (2001) Free Reading: implications for child development, in D.G. Singer & J.L. Singer (Eds) Handbook of
Children and the Media, pp. 29-46. Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Tarpley, T. (2001) Children, the Internet, and Other New Technologies, in D.G. Singer & J.L. Singer (Eds) Handbook of
Children and the Media, pp. 547-556. Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Marsh, J. & Thompson, P. (2001) Parental Involvement in Literacy Development: using media texts, Journal of Research
in Reading, 24, pp. 266-278.
Learners’ representation of their affective domain through figurative language in a web-based
learning environment
Stefania Manca, Manuela Delfino
What is valuable in accommodating students’ need for expressing affective domain is the

role played by face-to-face meetings and by the tutors. The opportunity to meet face-to-face and

the frequent private chat sessions in small groups helped to sustain the community, by helping

participants to face problems and, together with their tutors, find possible solutions. This

appeared particularly true in the middle of the course, when disagreements were solved through

discussion: the second face-to-face meeting encouraged students to interrupt their silence and

write again, thus increasing their sense of togetherness (Conrad, 2005).

Conrad, D. L. (2005). Building and Maintaining Community in Cohort-Based Online Learning,

Journal of Distance Education, 20(1), 1-20.

Learning to feel: Education, affective outcomes and the use of online

teaching and learning

Dr. Martha Cleveland-Innes

Dr. Mohamed Ally

Affective educational outcomes, defined as learning outcomes that focus on "individual disposition, willingness,
preferences, enjoyments …..." (Gronlund, 2000, p. 57) can be reintegrated as a critical focus during this restructuring.
A shortage of these skills has been identified in both Canada and the U.K. Human Resource and Skill Development
Canada identified, for example, that employees in call centre/help desk environments must be able to handle not only the
technological aspects of their job, but a variety of customer queries in an appropriate manner, using good 'soft skills'
(MacLeod, 2000). Found conceptually in the affective domain as the external expression of internalized emotion through
attitudes and values (Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001; Krathwohl, Bloom & Masia, 1964; Gagne, Briggs & Wagner, 1992),
workplace training in these content areas is being implemented to remedy this skills gap.

Results from this initial study of online learning and affective outcomes are inconclusive in relation to the comparison of
delivery outcomes, but hopeful in terms of working toward soft skills and affective gains using online delivery. Both
groups performed well on an exam testing knowledge of appropriate affect in customer service environments. The soft
skill assessment showed some gain from time one to time two in both platforms.
Gronlund, N.E. (2000). How to write and use instructional objectives. Toronto: Prentice-Hall.
Anderson, L.W. & Krathwohl, D. (Eds). (2001). A taxonomy for learning, teaching and assessing: A revision of Bloom's
taxonomy of educational objectives.New York: Addison Wesley Longman.
MacLeod, A. (2000). The importance of soft skills in the current Canadian labour market. Sectoral and Occupational
Studies Division of Human Resources Development Canada, April.

Reaching Students' Affective Domain of Learning


By Philip Duczyminski

Bloom’s Taxonomy identifies three domains of learning: cognitive, psychomotor, and affective.
The cognitive domain relates to thinking and the classification of knowledge. The psychomotor
domain pertains to our physical/kinesthetic skills, or task classification. The affective domain
includes behaviors associated with emotion/feeling and involves attitude and values.

Each domain is equally important. Students need to fully understand the subject matter and, in
firefighting especially, must be able to physically perform all required practical skills. The real trick
is to have students learn to care about what they are learning.

Domains & Learning Theories

Dr. Cheryl Grable


Anita Harrow's taxonomy for the psychomotor domain is organized according to the degree of
coordination including involuntary responses as well as learned capabilities. Simple reflexes begin
at the lowest level of the taxonomy, while complex neuromuscular coordination make up the
highest levels (Seels & Glasgow, 1990).

Learn more at

Constructivist Theory

(J. Bruner)
A major theme in the theoretical framework of Bruner is that learning is an active process in
which learners construct new ideas or concepts based upon their current/past knowledge. The
learner selects and transforms information, constructs hypotheses, and makes decisions, relying
on a cognitive structure to do so. Cognitive structure (i.e., schema, mental models) provides
meaning and organization to experiences and allows the individual to "go beyond the information