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Test Construction

Using Bloom’s
Chello Ann P.
Productive Pedagogies
• Students are engaged only in lower-order thinking; i.e.
they receive, or recite, or participate in routine practice.
• In no activities during the lesson do students go beyond
simple reproduction of knowledge.
• Students are primarily engaged in routine lower-order
thinking for a good share of the lesson.
• There is at least one significant question or activity in
which some students perform some higher-order
• Almost all students, almost all of the time are engaged in
higher-order thinking.
What is Higher-order thinking?
• Higher-order thinking by students involves the
transformation of information and ideas.
• This transformation occurs when students combine
facts and ideas and synthesize, generalize, explain,
hypothesize or arrive at some conclusion or
• Manipulating information and ideas through these
processes allows students to solve problems, gain
understanding and discover new meaning.
What is Higher-order thinking?
• When students engage in the construction of
knowledge, an element of uncertainty is introduced
into the instructional process and the outcomes are
not always predictable; in other words, the teacher is
not certain what the students will produce.
• In helping students become producers of knowledge,
the teacher’s main instructional task is to create
activities or environments that allow them
opportunities to engage in higher-order thinking.
Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy
• Taxonomy of Cognitive Objectives
• 1950s - developed by Benjamin Bloom
• Means of expressing qualitatively different kinds of thinking
• Adapted for classroom use as a planning tool
• Continued to be one of the most universally applied models
• Provides a way to organize thinking skills into six levels,
from the most basic to the higher order levels of thinking
• 1990s - Lorin Anderson (former student of Bloom) revisited
the taxonomy
• As a result, a number of changes were made
Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy
Evaluation Creating

Synthesis Evaluating

Analysis Analyzing
(Based on Pohl, 2000, Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn, p. 8)
Change in Terms
• The names of six major categories were
changed from noun to verb forms.
• As the taxonomy reflects different forms of
thinking and thinking is an active process
verbs were more accurate.
• The subcategories of the six major categories
were also replaced by verbs
• Some subcategories were reorganized.
Change in Terms
• The knowledge category was renamed.
• Knowledge is a product of thinking and was
inappropriate to describe a category of
thinking and was replaced with the word
remembering instead.
• Comprehension became understanding and
synthesis was renamed creating in order to
better reflect the nature of the thinking
described by each category.
Change in Emphasis
• More authentic tool for curriculum
planning, instructional delivery and
• Aimed at a broader audience.
• Easily applied to all levels of schooling.
• The revision emphasizes explanation and
description of subcategories.
The learner is able to recall, restate and remember
learned information.
– Recognizing
– Listing
– Describing
– Identifying
– Retrieving
– Naming
– Locating
– Finding
Can you recall information?
• record
• choose • locate • relate
• cite • match • repeat
• distinguish • memorize • reproduce
• give example • outline • review
• group • quote • select
• know • read • show
• label • recall • sort
• list • recite • underline
• listen • record • write
Classroom Roles for Remembering

Teacher Roles Student Roles

- directs - absorbs - recognizes
- examines - defines - remembers
- evaluates - describes - responds
- questions - memorizes - retells
- shows - passive recipient
- tells
Questions for Remembering
• What happened after...?
• How many...?
• What is...?
• Who was it that...?
• Can you name ...?
• Find the definition of…
• Describe what happened after…
• Who spoke to...?
• Which is true or false...?
(Pohl, Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn, p. 12)
The learner grasps the meaning of information by
interpreting and translating what has been learned.
– Interpreting
– Exemplifying
– Summarising
– Inferring
– Paraphrasing
– Classifying
– Comparing
– Explaining
Can you explain ideas or concepts?
•account for •observe
•annotate •outline
•associate •paraphrase
•define •recognize
•describe •reorganize
•discuss •report
•estimate •research
•give examples of •restate
•give main idea •retell
•identify •review
•interpret •translate
Classroom Roles for Understanding

Teacher Roles Student Roles

•active participant
•contrasts •describes
•demonstrates •explains
•examines •interprets
•listens •outlines
Questions for Understanding
•Can you explain why…?
•Can you write in your own words?
•How would you explain…?
•Can you write a brief outline...?
•What do you think could have happened next...?
•Who do you think...?
•What was the main idea...?
•Can you clarify…?
•Can you illustrate…?
•Does everyone act in the way that …….. does?
(Pohl, Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn, p. 12)
The learner makes use of information in a context
different from the one in which it was learned.

– Implementing
– Carrying out
– Using
– Executing

Can you use the information in another familiar


• adapt • dramatize • operate

• apply • draw • paint
• calculate • exhibit • practice
• change • illustrate • sequence
• collect • interpret • show
• compute • interview • solve
• construct • make • translate
• demonstrate • manipulate • use
Classroom Roles for Applying

Teacher Roles Student Roles

•active recipient
•facilitates •compiles
•observes •completes
•organizes •constructs
•questions •demonstrates use of knowledge
•solves problems
Questions for Applying
•Do you know of another instance where…?
•Can you group by characteristics such as…?
•Which factors would you change if…?
•What questions would you ask of…?
•From the information given, can you develop a
set of instructions about…?
(Pohl, Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn, p. 13)
The learner breaks learned information into its parts to best
understand that information.
– Comparing
– Organising
– Deconstructing
– Attributing
– Outlining
– Finding
– Structuring
– Integrating
Can you break information into parts to explore understandings
and relationships?
• analyze • diagram • order
• appraise • discriminate • probe
• arrange • dissect • question
• calculate • distinguish • relate
• categorize • examine • research
• compare • experiment • separate
• contrast • group • sequence
• criticize • inquire • sift
• debate • inspect • survey
• detect • investigate • test
Classroom Roles for Analyzing
Teacher Roles Student Roles
•acts as a resource - active participant - inquires
•dissects - argues - investigates
•evaluates - calculates - questions
•guides - debates - tests
•observes - discusses - thinks deeply
•organizes - examines - uncovers
Questions for Analyzing
Which events could not have happened?
If. ..happened, what might the ending have been?
How is...similar to...?
What do you see as other possible outcomes?
Why did...changes occur?
Can you explain what must have happened when...?
What are some or the problems of...?
Can you distinguish between...?
What were some of the motives behind..?
What was the turning point?
What was the problem with...?
(Pohl, Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn, p. 13)
The learner makes decisions based on in-depth
reflection, criticism and assessment.
– Checking
– Hypothesising
– Critiquing
– Experimenting
– Judging
– Testing
– Detecting
– Monitoring
Can you justify a decision or course of action?
• appraise • determine • rank
• argue • discriminate • rate
• assess • evaluate • recommend
• choose • infer • reject
• compare • judge • revise
• conclude • justify • score
• criticize • measure • select
• debate • predict • tell why
• decide • prioritize • validate
• deduce • probe • value
• defend
Classroom Roles for Evaluating
Teacher Roles Student Roles
•accepts - active participant - disputes
•clarifies - argues - judges
•guides - assesses - justifies
- compares - questions
- critiques - selects
- decides
Questions for Evaluating
Is there a better solution to...?
Judge the value of... What do you think about...?
Can you defend your position about...?
Do you a good or bad thing?
How would you have handled...?
What changes to.. would you recommend?
Do you believe...? How would you feel if. ..?
What are the consequences..?
What are the pros and cons of....?
What are the alternatives?
Who will gain & who will loose?
(Pohl, Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn, p. 14)
The learner creates new ideas and information using
what has been previously learned.
– Designing
– Constructing
– Planning
– Producing
– Inventing
– Devising
– Making
Can you generate new products, ideas, or ways of
viewing things?
• act
• • devise • organize
• • devise • originate
• • forecast • plan
• • formulate • predict
• • generate • prepare
• • imagine • produce
• • improve • propose
• • invent • set up
Classroom Roles for Creating
Teacher Roles Student Roles
•active participant
•analyses •creates
•evaluates •designs
•extends •formulates
•facilitates •modifies
•reflects •plans
•takes risks
Questions for Creating
Can you design
Can you see a possible solution to...?
If you had access to all resources, how would you
deal with...?
Why don't you devise your own way to...?
What would happen if ...?
How many ways can you...?
Can you create new and unusual uses for...?
Can you develop a proposal which would...?
(Pohl, Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn, p. 14)
Watch Out for Verbs that are not Measurable

• In order for an objective to give

maximum structure to instruction, it
should be free of vague or ambiguous
words or phrases.
• The following lists notoriously
ambiguous words or phrases which
should be avoided so that the intended
outcome is concise and explicit.
• believe • listen • appreciation • enjoyment of
• capacity • memorize for • conscious of
• comprehend • perceive • acquainted • familiar with
• conceptualize • realize with • interest in
• experience • recognize • adjusted to • interested in
• feel • see • awareness of • knowledge of
• hear • self-actualize • capable of • knowledgeable
• intelligence • think • comprehension about
• know • understand of • understanding
• cognizant of of
• is a best practice framework for setting goals
or objectives.
• A SMART goal or objective should be:
– specific
– measurable
– achievable
– realistic
– time-bound
Now it’s your turn…
• Use the Bloom’s Matrix and these
notes to plan a number of activities or
questions for each level of the
Thank you!!!